Friday, 12 May, 2006

Hoodwinked

Little Red Riding Hood walks into Grandma's house and goes through the whole, "What big ears you have" bit with the Big Bad Wolf who's trying to impersonate Granny.  The Wolf finally jumps out of the bed to attack Little Red.  Granny hops out of the closet, all trussed up and a giant woodsman with an axe comes bursting through the window.  Then things become much different from the fairy tale that we remember.

I rented the movie Hoodwinked today, based on a preview that I saw in the video store.  I had encountered it on the shelf and even picked it up, but ultimately decided not to get it.  Until I saw the trailer.  It's a wonderfully clever bit of silliness that had me laughing throughout.

The police of the Woods show up at Granny's house (called, no doubt, because of all the screaming that was going on).  Each of the four primary characters (Little Red, Granny, the Wolf, and the Woodsman) end up telling his own part of the story of how he managed to end up at Granny's house.  The stories all intersect in many different ways, and all have to do with trying to find the Goodie Bandit who is robbing all of the goodie shops of their recipies.

Shawn Edwards of Fox-TV is quoted as saying that Hoodwinked is, "the funniest animated movie since Shrek."  That's not saying much, considering that Shrek was dreck.  Hoodwinked ranks up there with Monsters, Inc. as a great film that's fun for all ages.

Hoodwinked works because it's a fun story well told.  The film makers concentrated on the story rather than on the medium.  The animation is good, but it's not cutting edge.  The sets (backgrounds) are simple--just complex enough to be useful, but not gratuitous.  The focus is on the characters and the story--especially the story.  And very little in the film fails to move the story along.

I'm quite impressed with the way that Hoodwinked was done, and I'll almost certainly add it to my movie collection.  If nothing else than to replay the singing goat part from time to time.  That was an absolute scream.  I give the movie my highest recommendation.  Grab a bowl of popcorn and sit back to enjoy a laugh.