zondag 1 februari 2015

100 Movie Challenge 2015 - # 19: Into the Woods

Director: Rob Marshall
Genre: Comedy/ Adventure/ Musical/ Fantasy
Runtime: 117 minutes
Year: 2014
Starring: Anna Kendrick, James Corden, Emily Blunt, Meryl Streep, Chris Pine, Johnny Depp, Tracey Ullman, Lucy Punch, Christine Baranski, Tammy Blanchard, Daniel Huttlestone, Lilla Crawford, Simon Russell Beale, Joanna Riding, Billy Magnussen, Mackenzie Mauzy, Annette Brosbie, Richard Glover, Frances de la Tour

Description: A witch (Meryl Streep) tasks a childless baker (James Corden) and his wife (Emily Blunt) with procuring magical items from classic fairy tales to reverse the curse put on their family tree.

Review: When you mix up the stories of ‘Little Red Riding Hood’, ‘Cinderella’, ‘Jack and the Beanstalk' and ‘Rapunzel’, you get “Into the Woods”. James Lapine and Stephen Sondheim did that already in 1986, not without success. And when you’re a big hit on West End, we off course need a movie version of it. Disney managed to get “Into the Woods” to the big screen. And Rob Marshall, who also directed “Chicago”, decided to direct.
“Into the Woods” is a mix of different fairytales by the brothers Grimm, with a little twist here and there and a lot darker. The story starts with a simple baker and his wife. The witch who lives next door has cast a spell on their house, a reason why the couple can’t have children. To lift that spell, the baker and his wife have to deliver a couple of items to the witch. In their search for those ingredients in the woods, the couple bumps into several interesting characters.
The fact that Disney produced this movie, doesn’t mean it has lost its dark edge. A true relief for Sondheim fans, because when the lines ‘and they lived happily ever after’ are spoken, the movie is only halfway. For people that get nervous when actors suddenly burst into song, don’t worry. It’s part of a musical, but the songs fit the story perfectly and form one. It’s not just a story build around the songs.
“Into the Woods” is a spectacle, with some dark tones and sometimes bombastic. The d├ęcor is stunning and the cast manages to win you over. Especially Meryl Streep and Emily Blunt shine. If you like musicals, you shouldn’t miss “Into the Woods”.

Rating: 4/ 5

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