The husband and I, we decided to go see a movie. Something we haven’t done since the first Transformers came out. You can thank my aunt, who bought us gift cards. “Now, you really use that!” As opposed to whatever else I was going to do with it, I suppose.
Not a lot out right now. Rango and Hop were ruled out because I wanted to see a grown up movie. Because it was just us. The grown ups.
I checked the site and tossed out my only two considerations: Limitless or Red Riding Hood. Now, Limitless has Robert De Niro in it. I should note, my husband has never in the history of ever taken me to see a chick flick. I figured De Niro had a better shot at upholding our “guy movie” trend. But he chose Red Riding Hood.
I love Amanda Seyfried. She was Lily on Veronica Mars. I quote her often, to my kids (Lily, I mean): “Whoop-de-freaking-do, Veronica!” They totally know what this means. I will always remember the end of season 1, when dead/flashback Lily is saying goodbye and she tells Veronica to never forget her. And Veronica says, “I could never.” That’s kind of how I felt.
Okay, so fast forward and Amanda is all gorgeous, as always, and kind of innocently bad, and sexy as Red Riding Hood.
What did I like? I was surprised to find out who the big bad wolf really was, though I think (spoiler) the grandma clues were a bit heavy handed. Is that a spoiler? Whatever.
I liked Gary Oldman, because he’s Gary Oldman, except he turned out to be a bit one dimensional as a character. I liked the mirroring of (spoiler) him losing his hand, as his wife-the wolf-had done. At his hand. Ha.
I like that Valerie (little miss riding hood) stayed true to her character. She was a brave girl and she stayed brave. She admitted to having spoken to the wolf. When she thought her grandmother was in trouble, she went there. Alone. With her knife. (Spoiler) She stabbed her love because she thought he was the wolf. Silly Valerie. Don’t you know the woodsman saves your ass?
I like that there was a clear protagonist, a clear antagonist, and lots of conflict. The stakes were made clear in the beginning. There were lots of red herrings. And when they explained who the wolf really was, the subtle signs had been laid throughout the story. And his actions, why he changed what had worked for the last two generations, were explained by his motivation. His reaction to story events. It made sense. That’s good storytelling.
What didn’t I like? I didn’t like that the guy playing Valerie/Amanda’s love interest reminded me of Teddy Dunn who played her brother on Veronica Mars. It wasn’t him, but it distracted me during the love scenes. Seriously. It’s actually Shiloh Fernandez. But, look:
There’s similarities, right? Just humor me.
There’s a scene, (spoiler) when they put Valerie out as wolf bait, and one of her friends tells her she tricked them all, she’s evil, blah blah blah. I have no idea what purpose this scene served other than to point out that Valerie realizes it could be anyone, including her best friend. Her friend turning on her does not come up in the story again and I’m thinking her new frenemy is one the people who says they won’t let Valerie sacrifice herself like 5 minutes later. Story events don’t just happen because that’s the easiest way for the writer to share information. Events should happen because that’s what a character, based on what’s happened up to that point, chooses to do and she has motivation to do it.
And even though all the elements of story were there, it wasn’t awesome. I was not, sadly, blown away. Also, my husband hated it. But he couldn’t say why. Except that it was like “watching paint dry.” His words. I’d never use a cliche like that.
He said this counts as taking me to a chick flick. I told him it totally didn’t count as a chick flick because it didn’t even have Katherine Heigl in it. And I offered him De Niro. So he still owes me a chick flick.
Have you seen it yet? What did you think?