I don’t think I’m that hard to please when it comes to movies. I laugh easily, like most things unless they are creepy or offensive, and even enjoy lots of kids family movies. But not this one! Despite loving the Muppets musicals and being a fan of most fairy tales, I could hardly handle this fairly tale musical, Into the Woods.
The basic recipe was:
- Take a whole bunch of fairy tales.
- Put them in a blender.
- Sing A LOT.
- Make it all rhyme. The songs don’t have to make sense as long as they rhyme.
- Then, when everyone thinks it’s over, make it an hour longer!
Besides the headache of hearing endlessly rhyming songs sung loudly to a very similar tune, there was the added annoyance of a totally confusing message. At one point Little Red Riding Hood, while plotting to kill a giant, says, “I don’t think my mom would be very proud of me. I’m about to murder someone.” She is reassured by Cinderella, in song of course, not to worry, cause “Your mother isn’t here; you have to make you own decisions now.” So while we hear at one moment that giants are perhaps people, too, and there could even be good giants, we in the next moment witness the ‘good guys’ killing one anyway. Wha!?
Earlier Red Riding Hood is met in the forest by a creepy wolf, who is, unsurprisingly, played by Johnny Depp (please, Johnny, stop playing creepos—you’re too good at it!). He sings about her tender flesh in a way that seems quite unrelated to his belly (yuck!) and she, after being eaten by him and then rescued, pipes away about all she learned…and keeps repeating that it was scary but exciting. What are we supposed to make of that!?
Another “charming” moment is when the sleezy prince woos the baker’s wife, who just had a long awaited baby, by reassuring her that they should “live in the moment” and that anything goes “in the woods.” This is after he and his brother prince sang of their supposedly heart wrenching love struck “agony” for their newly met beloveds, Cinderella and Rapunzel, while tearing at their shirts at the top of a waterfall. Ugh! 😝 As the prince later explained, “I was raised to be charming, not sincere.” My girls were not impressed.
Well, anyway, forgive me as this was more of a rant than a review, but in the hopes of sparing precious hours of your life, here is my advice: If anyone invites you Into the Woods, run! 🏃🏻🏃🏻🏃🏻