“The woods are just trees,
The trees are just wood.”
Anybody going to see Into the Woods who is not familiar with the story was probably just expecting to see Meryl Streep with big blue hair going crazy for 3 1/2 hours, which might actually be somewhat true, but I will honestly say that I, not even being the biggest fan of these types of big Hollywood productions, absolutely loved the movie. Not only because it was a musical and I adore musicals, but more so because the cast made it a worthwhile watch; it was fun, and the Chris Pine / Billy Magnussen duet scene makes it worth the entire $15.00 (aaagonyyyy, AGONY!!!).
The original Into the Woods production (first a musical and also a book) is set literally in the middle of the woods where all of the most well-known fairy tale characters like Rapunzel, Jack in the Beanstalk, Little Red Riding Hood, etc. cross paths after a Witch (Meryl Streep) challenges a Baker (James Corden) and his Wife (Emily Blunt) to reverse a curse put on their childless family by gathering 4 very specific things: 1) the cow as white as milk, 2) the cape as red as blood, 3) the hair as yellow as corn, and 4) the slipper as pure as gold. Everything intertwines quite perfectly for all of them, at least at first.
“Into the woods,
The path is straight,
You know it well,
But who can tell?”
While the Baker and his Wife are busy preparing their journey to get everything for the Witch so they can finally have their baby, Cinderella (Anna Kendrick) is stuck in the attic of her stepmother’s house wishing nothing more than to go to the ball. Kendrick really did kill it (as always!), being the freaking cutest Cinderella ever while perfectly hitting all the notes respectfully. Her stepsisters also make for a lot of Into the Woods‘ laughs, as they are perfectly awful in every way possible.
Little Red Riding Hood (Lilla Crawford) was also a riot (pretty sure she was my favorite part), with her very hungry and silly ways eating entirely too much of Grandmother’s bread from the Baker and then running into the Big Bad Wolf played by Johnny Depp (because WHO ELSE WAS GOING TO PLAY THE BIG BAD WOLF YOU GUYS I mean seriously???).
Aside from the gorgeous set production that was up for an Academy Award this year (it lost to Grand Budapest Hotel), the music and songs really made Into the Woods so much fun despite it feeling very long (it was actually 125 minutes; at one point I thought it was going on 3 hours). But if you’re in it for the fun and dig the concept I’d say definitely make a point to see this one (or just wait until it comes out on DVD March 24th).
(photo via The Credits)