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We all know the Brother’s Grimm fable Little Red Riding Hood. Most of us would have grown up with the story being read to us repeatedly, so it’s no surprise that this new adaptation has been a highly anticipated movie. Yet, if you think you already know the storyline, you could find yourself either disappointed or pleasantly surprised.
Catherine Hardwicke’s adaptation of Little Red Riding Hood has all the important bits: a wolf, a girl with a red hood and a grandmother. Most importantly it features three crucial phrases: what a deep voice you have; what big eyes you have; what a big mouth you have. Unfortunately that’s where the similarities between the fable and the movie end.
Valerie (played by Amanda Seyfried) is a beautiful young woman who’s pursued by two very handsome men – one her childhood love, but outsider Peter (played by Shiloh Fernandez) and the other her soon-to-be husband and wealthy blacksmith, Henry (played by Max Irons). When Valerie’s sister is killed by the werewolf that has been taunting their village for two decades, Valerie and Peter plan to run away, but find themselves locked in the village when famous werewolf hunter, Father Solomon (Gary Oldman), closes the gates and warns that the werewolf has been living among the villagers for years and could in fact be a close friend or relative. Subsequently Valerie discovers her connection with the werewolf – she can talk to him. Unsurprisingly the witch talk begins and Valerie ends up as bait for the werewolf.
While the acting is passable, the storyline and set have taken away any credibility or authenticity that could have been expected from a movie with a budget of millions of dollars and one of the best fables ever written. The set resembles some fake soap opera set and not one worth a million dollars or more and the script has made Little Red Riding Hood into yet another teenage chick flick with some muscly men but little else. Unfortunately the similarities between this adaptation and Twilight are all too apparent, from the lighting, the way the film was shot to the all too predictable script, which is disappointing when it could have been such a dark and exciting film.
Little Red Riding Hood does have some scary moments and some funny ones, but if you’re looking for a dark and twisted movie, you might want to look somewhere else. If, however, you’re just looking for some entertainment and perhaps some eye candy, then this could be the right movie for you. This film could have been done so much better and it’s a shame considering it’s one of the most read stories in the world.