Sunday, January 26, 2014

Red Riding Hood

I watched this film recently through my trial of Netflix. It's a fantasy horror story about a village terrorised by a werewolf. I'm not sure when or where it was supposed to be set, the costumes look vaguely medieval but I doubt historical accuracy is the point. It's a bit like the film Hansel and Gretel Witch Hunters, in that it tries to give a modern twist to the old fairy tale of Red Riding Hood. I don't mind the idea of taking an old fairy tale and re-invigorating it for the modern age. Unlike the all out action in Hansel and Gretel Witch Hunters there was more in this film for teenage girls and a bit less of the horror content. Neither film contains real horror content in my opinion. Gary Oldman gives his usual performance, this time as a kind of a priest turned slightly mental by his knowledge of the occult werewolf. To give an idea of his madness, his fingernails had been replaced with pointed silver ones, which can't have been fun. The village thought bringing him in to kill the werewolf terrorising them for years would be a good thing but as it turns out, he brings with him knowledge that by day the werewolf walks among them and this leads to all sorts of suspicions and mistrust. So the premise isn't a bad one and the execution of the film is not unpleasant to watch. It just sort of washed over me though, without me feeling very engaged in the characters. The performances were okay, bordering on mediocre. I didn't feel the central character of Valerie, played by Amanda Seyfried, had enough going for her for me to feel strongly about her. I was left not caring whether she was killed by the werewolf or not, it might have been a good twist if evil had prevailed. In summary, it's something I would think would appeal to teenager girls for the fantasy and romance elements but not really to anyone else. In that sense, I'm probably not the intended audience. I was interested in seeing it because of an interest in fantasy horror but this film didn't have much of either.

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