This movie was based off of the musical, Into the Woods. It centers on a baker and his wife, who are sent on a quest by a witch to lift a curse from their house. In order to do so, they must collect a cloak as red as blood, hair as yellow as corn, a cow as white as milk and a slipper as pure as gold within three days time. This quest proves difficult- even more so than they thought, as they venture into the woods. They gain the cloak through an encounter with a girl who was eaten by a wolf. The shoe comes from Cinderella, who is always on the run and desperate to stay away from the prince chasing after her. The hair is taken, quite forcibly, from a fair maiden, Rapunzel, who lives in a tower. [That didn’t end up working anyway, since the witch had touched the object, as she was the caretaker of the girl.] They took the cow from Jack, who sold it for a bunch of beans. [This action probably proves that he has his own supply hidden inside his head.] After they collect these items, with a sudden poof the witch regains her youthful beauty and the baker’s wife becomes pregnant. All is well, and they all live happily-
-wait, this just came in. The beanstalk has been neglected and there is a giant on the rampage, trying to get revenge for the death of her husband. Everyone runs for their lives, and the aforementioned characters stick together for survival. Until the baker’s wife wanders off and starts kissing Cinderella’s prince. I guess karma hit them both pretty hard since the prince was rejected by Cinderella and the baker’s wife… well, she fell off a cliff. The baker is hit pretty hard by this, and decides to leave his baby with Cinderella, determined that he will be a horrible father. After seeing the ghost of his father within the depths of the woods, he decides to go back. Everyone works together to kill the giant. They all live happily ever after, except for the fact that half of the characters are lost and forgotten, two of them died, and the others have no homes because they were destroyed by the giant.
What I Thought:
The soundtrack is totally awesome. Really; I’ve had the entire thing on repeat for the past few days. I love, love, love the harmonies. I was really excited for Meryl Streep, because I adore her in the movie Mama Mia, and she surprised me even more with the role of the witch. On The Steps of The Palace, Into the Woods Medley, and Agony (which has absolutely nothing to do with the pointless shirt ripping from both the princes) were my favorite songs. I loved Anna Kendrick’s Cinderella character, but I would have loved to actually see some of the ball. I thought Rapunzel was kind of a pointless character (other than the fact that they needed her hair) and her prince was even more pointless. I was also extremely disappointed that Johnny Depp had so little screen time; he was the one I was most excited to see. I didn’t really see the point of the sudden death of the baker’s wife; it seemed like of those death’s that was more of a “shock” factor. I thought, considering Little Red Riding Hood’s thoughts to Cinderella about showing forgiveness, that they would show compassion for the giant, but it seemed that message in the story was neglected. I thought it was kind of disturbing that the prince and the baker’s wife were having a party with their mouths, considering they are both married. I was satisfied with that, however, when Cinderella dumped him, because he was a total imbecilic nitwit. To be honest, the only sensible characters were the bakers, [the butchers, and the candlestick makers] Little Red, Jack, Cinderella, and the witch. The stepmother was pretty sensible, why not cut off your daughters’ toes and heels to put on a slipper? Who cares if the prince discovers the fraud later as soon as she takes off her shoes? It’s a great plan, totally foilproof. Also, if the witch could bring back the cow from the dead, why couldn’t she do the same for the baker’s wife? She had plenty of time before her finale came and she reached her end. I am being really pessimistic about this. I did enjoy this movie immensely; it might be one of my new favorites. The music is so upbeat and fun, plus I’ve always been a huge fan of fairytales. I just thought a lot of the characters were… missing something. Overall, it was a great musical and the actors did fairly well.