Brittany Madigan: Red Riding Hood review

Who’s afraid of the big bad wolf? Obviously not Amanda Seyfried who plays Valerie in the 2011 adaptation of the story Little Red Riding Hood. The movie was directed by Catherine Hardwicke, who is known for directing the movie Twilight.

Ironically, Red Riding Hood includes the same type of music, a few of the same actors, and almost identical screen shots as Twilight.

For the most part, everyone knows the old fable of Little Red Riding Hood. (The fairytale where the little girl wanders through the woods to bring food to her sick grandmother and then runs into a big bad wolf who wants to eat her. The wolf then decides on a genius idea to hide in the little girl’s grandmother’s house and pretends to be the grandma. Right before the wolf eats the little girl, a woodsman kills the wolf.) Well, the movie takes the same concept, but it's not identical to the story. Red Riding Hood has a grandmother that lives in the woods, a girl who wears a red cloak, and a wolf of sorts, but that’s the extent of the similarities between the two.

In the movie version, Little Red Riding Hood is a girl named Valerie who lives in a small village in the middle of nowhere. The village has been plagued by the curse of a werewolf for years. Valerie is in love with a woodcutter named Peter, but Valerie’s mother wants her to marry Henry. Henry happens to be the local blacksmith’s son, and in the movie, there is no real reason Valerie’s mother wants her to marry Henry instead. Apparently, blacksmiths are just better than woodcutters.

The village they all live in has long dealt with the wolf striking on full moons, but the moon that takes place in the movie is different. It’s a red moon, meaning if a wolf strikes a human, the human will become a snack and turn into a werewolf as well. Valerie and Peter are minutes from running away with each other when news gets out that the wolf has struck again. This time, the victim is Valerie’s sister. After the incident, a local priest calls for backup and soon, the famous witch and wolf hunter, Father Solomon, arrives.

The village people are then told that the wolf is really a person, a person who everyone knows. A giant festival is thrown in the middle of town and everyone attends. While everyone is dancing and having a merry old time, the wolf attacks the party and then tells Valerie he wants her to leave with him. Valerie is the only one who can hear it and gets accused of being a witch.

I won’t give away the ending because it’s the best part, but the rest of the movie deals with a lot of violence, romance, and Valerie trying to piece together who the wolf really is and saving herself and the town’s people.

The Good

Amanda Seyfried and Shiloh Fernandez definitely fit the characters of Valerie and Peter perfectly. Seyfried can play the innocent girl and the bad girl all in one movie, making everything a little less dull and Fernandez is good at playing the mysterious bad boy everyone likes.

Although Hardwicke made Red Riding Hood look a little too much like Twilight, there was still some awesome screen shots in the beginning of the movie that made everything a little more interesting.

Hardwicke used an impressive amount of creativity to design the movie and made it stick out from others because she took such a different movie and made everything about it…different. Not to mention the fact that there’s also a large amount of good looking guys in the movie, but I won’t get into that.

The Bad

The audience was annoyed with the selection of music for the movie. Electronica does not serve well for a horror/romance movie. It ended up making some scenes awkward, leaving people’s minds to wander elsewhere.

Besides Seyfried and Fernandez, there was some awful acting. Gary Oldmon (Father Solomon) and Max Irons (Henry) went a little overboard. Their acting was making the movie funny and I'm pretty sure that's not the direction it was meant to lead. There was too much hype behind this movie just to be disappointed because of the off balance acting that was included.

The romance in Red Riding Hood was almost irrelevant to the movie, and the scenes were longer than they needed to be. I was hoping the movie would have been scarier.

It was also tiring trying to figure out who the wolf was, which made the movie feel too long. Many parts of Red Riding Hood used cheesy graphics that could have turned out better if more time was spent editing the movie.

What it means

It’s not that I didn’t enjoy seeing Red Riding Hood, but I wouldn’t say it was the best movie I have ever seen. I would say it was the worst best movie I have ever see because it left me wanting to see it again.

It was refreshing to be able to watch a movie without being able to predict the ending. To everyone who enjoyed the tale of Little Red Riding Hood as a kid and wants to see a good twist to the story, then this is a must see.

Grade: B-

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