Following the release of the official plot synopsis for this big-screen movie, no illustration forms about what this adaptation of the classic Grimm fable is like. It wasn’t until its trailer that we learn to what lengths Twilight director Catherine Hardwicke would take the Red Riding Hood fairy tale.
Red Riding Hood (2011) Film Review
Since childhood, Valerie is taught the dangers of a stranger, and the importance of being a “good girl.” Even though she tries, her burgeoning friendship with a boy in the woods pushes her to break the rules. Some ten years later, Valerie’s (Amanda Seyfried) life is mundane. The small village she resides in is anything but satisfying, and her parents (Virginia Madsen, Billy Burke) pressure her to marry the successful Henry (Max Irons). It isn’t that there is anything wrong with Henry except for Valerie’s disinterest. Instead she peruses the outsider and orphaned woodcutter Peter (Shiloh Fernandez); her childhood sweetheart.
The two lovers meet in secret under the protection of the woods that surround the village. Together they make plans to run away, but fate has other ideas. Things change when Valerie’s elder sister is dies at the hand of a creature. Until now, villagers have held a tentative truce with this wolf through animal sacrifices. Now the residents fear what they cannot see.
I’ll wait for you… – Red Riding Hood
It doesn’t take all that astute an observation to realize this is fairy tale has undertones that are more sinister than the movie touches on. Good or bad, most of these are passed over either because writers chose not to explore them or for fear of the MPAA rating. As I think back on the original concept, Little Red Riding Hood isn’t exactly prime children’s reading material, so a darker approach fits.
All this movie does is capitalize on a sinister (aka chilling) idea. The chills change because of the grown-up cast (for a grown-up audience), a love triangle and a werewolf villain. Never did I think I’d have such a close connection to the Twilight franchise. But since I am a sucker for fairy tales, and a fan of Seyfried’s work, this became irresistible. Its cast is quite impressive – nearly everyone exhibits hints of mystery in their persona; it’s always up in the air as to who you should trust. The writers conceal the wolf’s identity well, although it isn’t for lack of making obvious choices targets.
The movie starts as a beautiful story like any fictionalized tale might, and its cinematography is gorgeous. As with everything I “endorse,” this is not for everyone. Some will find this entertaining, but it’s “different.” The entire movie is morally skewed, but this isn’t because of the plot. Instead it’s the characters who have some ideas we question, plus the ending is about as unromantic as any I’ve seen. If you’re a fanatic of the Twilight series, then you’ll likely to enjoy Catherine’s latest young adult movie. It’s a dark fairy tale that somehow still manages some touching snapshots amidst the otherwise dreary tale.A dark and deceptive #fairytale. ‘Red Riding Hood’ (2011) is nothing like the childhood fable you remember. #FWArchives #Movies #Fantasy Click To Tweet
CONTENT: In attempts to make Peter jealous, Valerie suggestively dances with a female. Peter and Valerie have intimate relations [later scenes show the pair, obviously naked lovemaking]. In order to ensure the safety of her brother, one village girl offers herself as barter. There’s an out-of-wedlock pregnancy. The wolf is a terrifying creature who kills a dozen people in the course of the film [all of which are shot with little blood and the camera cuts away just before impact; there are some implications of torture also, a girl is thought a witch]. One man collects the head of a wolf as a prize of sorts, assuming it is the werewolf. The film is PG13.