A few weeks ago, I rented Into The Woods. It seemed like a good idea at the time. Dan had seen it in theatres and given it a solid “meh,” so how bad could it be?
For starters, the cast is totally ah-mazing. I especially loved Lucy Punch as an evil stepsister and Tracey Ulman as the Jack’s mother. And obviously Meryl Streep. I wasn’t familiar with Lilla Crawford, who played Red, before this, but her sardonic style and tough-girl attitude won her a new fan in me.
But I did think it was totally weird that Cinderella played such a major role in the picture so soon before her own feature film (which came out only about 10 weeks later) … although she seems to have magical powers over the animals in this version of the tale, which is so. much. better. than the stupid crap in every other Cinderella retelling. And while I absolutely hated the Cinderella character herself (terrible, no-agency-having idiot that she is), I loved how they incorporated the darker aspects of the original fairy tale.
Okay … so here’s the real thing: I had no idea this movie was going to be a musical. I know it’s a Broadway musical, but for some reason, I thought it was just going to be a straight movie retelling. So that was weird for me, right off the bat. Plus, the music was okay, but the songs are hardly earworms. They just weren’t wowing me.
As the movie progressed, it just got darker and darker. Which is cool with me. I actually loved the slightly dark and twisty tone of the piece … but somehow, the movie didn’t work as a dark musical. I’m not saying such a thing isn’t possible (see: Sweeney Todd), but it definitely didn’t work here.
And then, I thought the movie was over. The plot seemed to have resolved itself. But there were still 45 minutes left. How? What? Huh? Uggggh. This one couldn’t have been over soon enough.
Did you see Into The Woods? What did you think? Let us know in the comments!