" Red Riding Hood offers nothing for me to recommend. If you're a huge Gary Oldman fan then you can wait until it's on TV and fast forward to his scenes, otherwise, I wouldn't even waste a dollar at Redbox. "
Director: Catherine Hardwicke
Studio: Warner Brothers
Tagline: Believe the legend. Beware the wolf.
Release Date: March 11, 2011
Valerie's (Seyfried) caught in a love triangle, a werewolf's on the loose, and a deranged werewolf hunter comes into town bent on doing whatever it takes to kill the wolf. Two hours of bad acting, boring plot devices, and a lame plot twist later and you're on your way home wishing you'd listened to my warning. An inexcusable mess of a so-called horror movie ensues.MY TAKE
Dear Warner Brothers, director Hardwicke, and screenwriter David Johnson,
What exactly was I just subjected to? I was willing to buy into the potential wrapped within the concept of a dark version of the Little Red Riding Hood story. And when I saw that Gary Oldman was on board as a werewolf hunter I naively thought to myself, “OK, this could work.” Then I watched the movie…
Did you blow all the acting budget on Oldman? After rounding up some bigger names who no doubt owed Ms. Hardwicke and/or WB a favor or two, it appears you had to resort to scouting some high school plays with little more than free bologna sandwiches and a credits mention to offer. I’m particularly curious as to what was going on with Billy Burke. Did you agree to give him something stronger than bologna sandwiches? I don’t know how else you explain the fact that he spends the entirety of his monotone performance in a complete haze. At least Oldman didn’t need the sandwiches as he obviously satiated his appetite with his voracious scene-chewing.
You should be aware that the sub-par acting of the very modern-day looking teenage-ish characters effectively takes the viewer out of the film immediately. It’s bad enough that it looks like they shop at The Gap for Medieval Teens and that their hair is perfectly coiffed; was it necessary to give them clunky dialog and awkward “make-out” scenes in addition?
It’s not all bad though. You might be happy to know that the film did cause a bit of discussion between my wife and me afterward. In the midst of trying to come to an agreement on the most ridiculous scene of the film, we narrowed our choices to the following three:
- The weird 10-15 minute “celebration” scene with the idiotic dancing that obviously served as nothing more than filler.
- The dream sequence featuring all the “my, what big eyes, ears, teeth you have” lines. You did a masterful job at awkwardly forcing this into the film without giving it any real purpose. Kudos.
- The [poorly-rendered CGI] werewolf telepathically speaking to Valerie. If inducing unintentional laughter was your goal then y’all are some goal-achieving sons of guns!
I’d be interested in your thoughts on the matter.
In conclusion, I would probably find the film to be quite intense and scary if I were a sheltered 9-year-old girl with no true sense of fear. And the romantic subplot would have hit on all the right angles if… well, if I manage to think of a demographic it would appeal to I’ll get back to you.
With the economy as bad as it is, surely you can agree that movie-goers deserve better than this, no? How can you as a business - in good conscious - expect your customers to spend time, gas money, and $10+ a pop on such an inferior product as Red Riding Hood? Have you seen gas prices these days? Come on, the least you can do is offer a “money back guarantee.”
At one point (correction: it was at about three or four different points), my wife turned to me and said, “This is just stupid.” Audience exclamations such as “Well, that was awful!” and “Are you kidding me?” would seem to indicate that you’d be hard-pressed to find many who disagreed with that assessment.
Anyway, back to my original question – what was I subjected to? I said adieu to two hours of my life in order to watch something that doesn’t even measure up to a Sy Fy Original! An explanation would be much appreciated.
A frustrated movie-goerMAMA'S APPROVAL
Rated PG-13 for violence and creature terror, and some sensuality, RED RIDING HOOD contains no profanity, but the somewhat suggestive "make-out" scenes and violence make this unacceptable for the pre-teens. The film's poor quality is more offensive than the content.