Thursday, March 31, 2011

Review - Red Riding Hood (2011)

Starring: Amanda Seyfried, Gary Oldman, Max Irons, Shiloh Fernandez, Michael Hogan
Director: Catherine Hardwicke
Writer: David Johnson

So being the good boyfriend I decided to go and see this movie. I had no expectations what so ever; in fact you could say that they were rock bottom. At the end of the movie while I thought it was actually not good I found some positives about it while my girlfriend was really really disappointed. Didn’t see that one coming. So let’s break this movie down and see how it ticks. Because apparently it’s a watch. Geez I really need to think of better segue’s.

First off let me say that the movie does look pretty. The establishing shots really do capture the eye and make me remember a few Imax documentaries I’ve seen in the past. Even when the shots were repeated I didn’t mind as I was taken in by the landscape. However most of the film takes place on a set and it’s obvious, yet I found that it gelled with the fairy tale atmosphere trying to be created. Yet again this seemed to tap into some stage plays I use to watch when I was just a young kid. I will also give a shout out to my man Michael Hogan who played Colonel Saul Tigh in the latest Battlestar Galactica tv series. When he was on screen he actually had presence and you could tell he was having a little fun. It’s a shame that none of the other actors seemed to be in the same spirits.

So now onto the stuff I didn’t like and lets start with all the other actors. I don’t believe I’ve ever watch a film with Amanda Seyfried before, and honestly after this I’m not sure what people see in her. I just didn’t buy her decisions, I didn’t care and to me there was potential for a great character in Valerie but it was really wasted. Gary Oldman shows up to chew the scenery as Solomon. Here he plays a werewolf hunter, and I must say while he was doing his thing I just wasn’t into his character. I think if he was given more focus there could have been something. As for Valeries two suitors played by Shiloh Fernandez (Peter) and Max Irons (Henry), they were just bland. Max does show some life but it quickly dies out. To me one just bravely whined and the other cowardly whined and all the time I was hoping the wolf would eat both of them. As for the other actors they did a fine enough job but they just seemed bored in some scenes and such I was bored along with them.

But maybe I’m being to harsh on the actors as honestly the biggest fault of this movie is that it has three stories each with great potential, but each one would be good enough for an individual film yet all mashed together they have no real time to develop. We have of course the love story and yet it’s undercooked. At no time did I see it as a love triangle even though they were pushing for it, and honestly everything just seemed too coincidental. Also a love story isn’t going to work when there just doesn’t seem to be any chemistry between the actors. Next we have the ‘Who is the Wolf?’ plot that also suffers as this would have been better as just the main movie. To tell you the truth I didn’t see the twist reveal (as there is always a twist reveal) but I just didn’t care. To convoluted. Finally we have the monster hunter’s story arc. This one actually intrigued me the most and as such it was also the one that was least touched upon, also the resolution was yet again so bloody forced it sat wrong with me. The main problem is that while yes each thread has a tenuous link with each other it just doesn’t feel right. With some revision we could have had a great story. Getting the lead male romantic interests more involved with the hunters/werewolf plots might have helped. However I can’t get into too much detail unless I get into spoiler territory.

I will stress that I didn’t find this a horrible affront to mankind, yet it is a testament to how lazy some movies are getting. Some have called this Twilight with werewolves, and while I can see how the comparison works, I would point out that this movie had greater potential. The source material hamstrung the Twilight movie before it even got out of the gate. Red Riding Hood could have been a great movie if it just had gone through a serious rewrite. Also it’s funny I bring up source material of Twilight and yet I haven’t actually mentioned the Red Riding Hood fairy tale and how it links with this movie. Well the fact is dear reader that its ties to Red Riding Hood are tenuous at best and could honestly be dumped and it wouldn’t have hurt the movie at all.

So look I’m not really sure who to recommend this movie too. I’m damn sure it’s not me. Hell if you want to role the dice I can think of worse date movies. Still I’m dead certain that this isn’t going to create a werewolf craze like Twilight did. While it might be easy for me to bash it, I will say there were some scenes I was captivated if only visually. I guess if you liked Twilight then you’ll probably like this movie. Now I’m off to watch Crank, I do believe it has properties that can counteract this movie.

No comments:

Post a Comment