Film Review: Unintentionally a Laughable Thriller, ‘Red Riding Hood’ Proves ‘Twilight’ Formula Can Flop

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CHICAGO – Catherine Hardwicke, who only directed the first “Twilight” and none of the following franchise films because she felt rushed and financially constrained, has cleverly figured out how to make another “Twilight” under the guise of the name “Red Riding Hood”.

HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 1.5/5.0
Rating: 1.5/5.0

Even “A”-lister Gary Oldman – who has curiously accepted the role of god’s good werewolf slayer – deserves better than to be grouped with this film’s teen-targeted talent. While he’s certainly the film’s highest-caliber artist, Oldman’s presence is nonetheless disappointing and still only scratches the surface of saving this film flop.

In a time when vampires and their foes are all the rage, Hardwicke’s modern-day “Red Riding Hood” transforms the Big Bad Wolf into a werewolf. (The earliest, 17-century version of the beloved story used an actual wolf whereas later versions have used ogres or a “bzou,” which we know as a werewolf.)

StarRead Adam Fendelman’s full review of “Red Riding Hood”.

Hardwicke has even cast a Robert Pattinson lookalike named Shiloh Fernandez who you’re likely as familiar with as you are the taste of your own urine. She’s even imbued him with another forbidden love story with Kristen Stewart replacement Amanda Seyfried from “Mamma Mia!” fame. Ironically, Shiloh’s role of Peter was even considered by “Twilight” hunk Taylor Lautner who’s remembered for his inability to wear a shirt so he can flaunt his airbrushed abs.

Though the story of Red Riding Hood is a well-loved children’s classic, Hardwicke’s “Red Riding Hood” proves the “Twilight” formula isn’t always a surefire bet. While her audience is the same “Twilight” and “Harry Potter” teen clan, the film’s failure is its billing as a fantasy, horror and Hitchcock-esque mystery/whodunit. This should have been a comedy. Instead, it delivers the worst mistake a thriller film can: an unintentional comedy that forces you to laugh in mockery.

“Red Riding Hood” stars Amanda Seyfried, Lukas Haas, Gary Oldman, Julie Christie, Virginia Madsen, Billy Burke, Shiloh Fernandez, Max Irons, Shauna Kain, Michael Hogan, Adrian Holmes, Cole Heppell, Christine Willes, Michael Shanks and Kacey Rohl from director Catherine Hardwicke and writer David Johnson. The film, which is rated “PG-13” for violence, creature terror and some sensuality, was released on March 11, 2011 with a running time of 120 minutes.

StarContinue for Adam Fendelman’s full “Red Riding Hood” review.

Amanda Seyfried in Red Riding Hood
Amanda Seyfried in “Red Riding Hood”.
Image credit: Kimberly French

StarContinue for Adam Fendelman’s full “Red Riding Hood” review.

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