When I previewed several clips from “Beastly” before it was released last week, I said the dark twist on the classic fairy tale seems to be the new supernatural creature flick. Just like a host of vampire and werewolf projects have cropped up in recent years, fairy tales seem to be the latest fad. And just one week after the teen retelling of “Beauty and the Beast” hit theaters comes the next in line, “Red Riding Hood.”
The girl in the red riding hood this time around is Valerie (Amanda Seyfried), a young woman whose medieval village is being terrorized by a wolf. The mysterious wolf kills Valerie’s sister, and the village receives a shock when werewolf hunter Father Solomon (Gary Oldman) reveals the wolf takes human form by day and is in fact one of the village’s residents.
The terror the wolf causes throws a wrench in Valerie’s romance with orphaned Peter (Shiloh Fernandez) and in her parents’ attempts to get her to marry wealthy Henry (Max Irons) instead.
“Red Riding Hood” is directed by Catherine Hardwicke of “Twilight” fame, and she certainly knows how to present a visually appealing story. The look of the film is beautiful, but the writing in these clips feels a bit stale. Hardwicke has assembled one heck of a cast in Seyfried, Oldman, Julie Christie and Virginia Madsen, but I don’t know that “Red Riding Hood” is actually going to be as dark a take on the classic fairy tale as it would like to be.
Based on the clips, Seyfried seems to be a decent enough lead, but the love triangle aspect feels very “Twilight,” especially given Fernandez’s Edward Cullen-esque brooding. While we’re making the vampire comparison, I’d like to see a fairy tale adaptation that takes a page from the dark and twisted world of “True Blood” rather than the sparkle of “Twilight.”
“Red Riding Hood” opens Friday. Check out seven clips from the film below.
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