Red Riding Hood is a movie kinda like Twilight, by the director of Twilight. It also has some people from Twilight from it, but don't let that lead you to believe it's anything like Twilight. Despite my own personal opinion that Twilight kind of sucks, this is in a league of its own.
I fear Red Riding Hood is the first in a long line of movies based on things that are nothing to do with the things they are based on. I know there have been some in the past, but this is a clear example, and with movies based on Battleship, Candy Land and Monopoly coming out of the woodwork I feel Red Riding Hood has opened the floodgates.
Red Riding Hood follows Valerie (Amanda Seyfried), a girl who loves Peter (Shiloh Fernandez), a lowly woodcutter, but has been betrothed to another man, because her parents probably don't want her to be happy or something. Also, her village has a problem with a local werewolf, because just a love triangle would be too boring. Anyway, the villagers have upheld a peace treaty with the werewolf (no idea how that was worked out), and they leave out livestock for it every full moon. But soon Valerie's sister is killed, so the villagers decide to call in some outside assistance to deal with the menace. Enter Solomon (Gary Oldman), a guy who knows his way around a werewolf, and who instantly quarantines the village to identify which of its inhabitants is intent on ripping out people's throats.
Basically Red Riding Hood is a whodunnit with a werewolf, set in a medieval village, whose residents can't quite decide if they're English or American, and the Twilight element comes in when it's implied that Valerie's love interest is in fact the wolf. Or is he? There seem to be many clues peppered throughout that imply several people are the wolf. Sound confusing? That's because it's a mess. This movie is clearly trying to draw in the Twilight crowd in the empty void in their life between Eclipse and Breaking Dawn, where they can see their favourite boys with their shirts off again. It's also trying to be something else, a movie in its own right, it just can't figure out what it wants to be.
The acting is bland, the characters aren't very likeable and the plot twists and turns are just tiresome. It's hard to see why they even called this movie Red Riding Hood at all, it bears no resemblance to the fairy tale, the film makers probably looked at their first cut and thought "Wait, there's nothing in this movie to do with Little Red Riding Hood, so let's make her wear a red cloak for a little while and add in a stupid dream sequence near the end with that famous 'What big eyes you have' dialogue in it." Seems like the only purpose of calling this Red Riding Hood is to draw people in who are just interested about how much they can screw it up.
Overall it's a poor attempt. The story drags and gets held up too long by having too many plot twists and turns. The special effects are decent, but they're not enough to save a movie with no real substance.
"Warner Bros., what big eyes you have"
"All the better to greatly misread the source material with, my dear"
"Warner Bros., what big pockets you have"
"All the better to cash in on Twilight and take the teenagers' money with, my dear"
"Warner Bros., what a big anus you have"
"All the better to lay a big fat steaming dump of a movie with, my dear"
I actually had that conversation with one of their executives. No lie.
My rating: 1/5