Title: Into the Woods
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Director: Rob Marshall
Starring: Meryl Streep, Emily Blunt, James Corden
Runtime: 2 hr 5 mins
What It Is: Stephen Sondheim’s (Sweeney Todd) newest musical adventure is again based on a stage play. It takes a variety of the Brothers Grimm tales an smashes them together in a musical extravaganza. We start with a humble baker (Corden) and his wife (Blunt) really want a child! And they will do anything to get one including fulfill the wishes of a wicked witch (Streep). She had previously cursed the Baker’s home thaks to his father and now the witch needs certain items to regain her previous form and break the curse. These items are: a cow as white as milk, a cape as red as blood, hair as yellow as corn and a slipper as pure as gold, and the Baker and his wife must now journey into the woods to find these things.
What We Think: There was so much that could’ve gone right here, and yet it’s squander thanks to the writing and story direction. At the onset you get introduced to this world full of brilliant songs and wonderful visuals, and yet the characters in that world aren’t the least bit interesting. Anna Kendrick is normally quite charming, and take nothing away from her wonderful singing in this but Cinderella just isn’t interesting…at all. Chris Pine is a one trick pony as Prince Charming through no fault of his own. Frankly even Streep couldn’t get me into what was going on, but it all looked nice from an aesthetic point of view. Emily Blunt was quite good but again the dialogue was blase. Marshall presents these big pictures that lack depth, and there are way too many . There wasn’t any time to develop Repunzel, or the Big Bad Wolf. And speaking of the Wolf, hes not very appealing nor that great a character.
Our Grade: C+, Having said all those things there is still a certain charm about the film that won’t let it fall despite it’s tepid ending which seemed tacked on to begin with. The special effects were hit and miss, and the makeup was okay. It’s the costumes that really bring the whole thing home I mean honestly what’s a musical without bombastic costumes and sets? Answer, not nearly as much fun. Sadly thats not enough to make this one ACTUALLY fun!