Lucamar Productions, Marc Platt Productions, Walt Disney Pictures,
Anna Kendrick, Johnny Depp, Chris Pine, Meryl Streep, Emily Blunt, James Corden, Lilla Crawford
A Baker (James Corden) and his wife (Emily Blunt) live next door to a wicked witch (Meryl Streep) who informs them that their house is cursed because of something his father did years ago, and they can never have a child unless they retrieve four items from the woods before midnight on the third day. This happens to be a fantasy forest where all of the major fairy tale characters live, such as Cinderella (Anna Kendrick), Little Red Riding Hood (Lilla Crawford), Jack (Daniel Huttlestone) and his mother (Tracy Ullman) and many more. The poor baker and his wife set out into the woods to meet up with all these other characters to try to locate the items in time while lots of perils and troubles plague everyone. This film is a musical based upon the Broadway musical by Stephen Sondheim of the same name.
I have been waiting for a long time for this film. I suspect it will get mixed reviews. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion of what art is, and one man’s pile of junk is another man’s brilliant sculpture. I went to the theater positive this would garner a 5 star review. I was sorely disappointed. The look of this film is tremendous. The sets and locations are stunning. The effects are dazzling, but the music did not impress me much. They tried to throw all the characters together, which is a lot to bite off, but they cut what they didn’t want, modified the stories to fit the plan, and then drew out parts that seemed like they would never end. Oh, and the music. I wasn’t sure if i heard different songs, or one long song that changed it up once in a while. I won’t remember any of the music tomorrow. It seems like they said a word or two, made a point or shared a value judgement, then everyone stopped to sing about the same thing over and over for quite some time. The songs did not drive the story forward, they seemed more like a timeout every few minutes. Some of the characters were good. Meryl Streep was amazing, of course, and this was a great role for her. If you can’t imagine her as a wicked witch, that’s the idea, cause she pulled it off. Chris Pine has a nice singing voice, and he’s actually a pretty decent guy, really, but this role had nothing for him to do. I have no idea what happened to him towards the end, as he just went insane and faded out of the picture????? In fact, when the story comes to a nice smooth ending, where Cinderella and the Prince get married and the baker and his wife have their baby, everything is swelling up to a fine fairy tale finish and credits, and then this film takes a bizarre turn into a land where no one ought to go. Bodies are piling up, everything turns really, really dark, and no one is unscathed. We plod on and on and on and on, with no end in sight, and it seems like the whole theater turned really restless. Things got pointless, as I said, extremely dark, and not much made sense after that.
This is a PG rated film, that is very violent and extremely dark for kids. You really need to use Parental Guidance on this one. But even more I would hate to unleash this long dragged out musical on the kids who would probably enjoy a 45 minute version of this without any of the music. I’m not sure where the new musical thing came in where there is really no dialog ,but everything is sung. Les Miserables was like that. I would have liked the story much better if they would have talked more and sung much less. Granted there are great songs in Les Mis, but all the singing in between the songs is what drove me nuts. This is even worse as they sing and sing and sing the same stuff over and over making the same points again and again, and it’s really chaotic. I am speaking heresy here, and the Sondheim fans are going to crucify me, but my reviews are my opinions, and I really felt cheated here. I had such high hopes.
EdG – EdsReview Dot Com – A Movie Review Blog
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