A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that this is a jerry-rigged version of Little Red Riding Hood, with jokes (verbal and visual) aimed at kids and adults, though not at the same time. The plot involves theft, cartoonish violence (including the use of explosions, axes, guns, and vehicles), and an extreme snowboarding semi-finale.
What's the story?
At the center of HOODWINKED is a mystery wherein police investigate a break-in at Grandma's house by the Goody Bandit. Granny (Glenn Close) is worried that her secret goody recipe book is missing, one of a series of similar thefts in the forest. The suspects are questioned by detective frog Nicky Flippers (David Ogden Stiers), aided by Detective Bill Stork (Anthony Anderson) and Chief Grizzly (Xzibit). Each story ends in the bedroom: Red (Anne Hathaway), pausing during her deliveries of baked goods for Granny, discovers Wolf (Patrick Warburton) in the old lady's bed and Granny herself tied up in the closet; Wolf reveals that he's an investigative reporter hunting the recipe thief; and the Woodsman (Jim Belushi) is an actor in the process of practicing for a role who stumbled and accidentally crashed through Granny's window.
Is it any good?
The stories sort of intersect at repeating points of action, but the film lacks coherence and tact: all the gags slam against one another, like a set of sketches more than any sort of plot. This narrative sloppiness is hardly helped by the unimpressive animation, which makes the characters seem bloated and blocky, rather than engaging. The storytelling grows increasingly tedious (as does Andy Dick's twitchy bunny, Boingo), leading at last to a denouement full of extreme sports tricks and thuggy villains, all more frantic than amusing.
The target audience also seems conceptually mushy: most of the verbal gags aim at adults, the slapsticky violence might please kids, but these tracks remain divergent. Plus, with all its energy directed toward the hyper-actionation, the movie loses the fairy tale's creepy focus, namely, the little girl's engagement with the fuzzy beast pretending to be her grandma. Here, Red's martial arts skills rather undermine the threat, and place big bad Wolf -- and everyone else for that matter -- at a disadvantage. Bland rather than lively, Hoodwinked eventually peters out.
Talk to your kids about ...
- In theaters: January 13, 2006
- On DVD or streaming: May 2, 2006
- Cast: Anne Hathaway, Glenn Close, James Belushi
- Directors: Cory Edwards, Todd Edwards
- Studio: Weinstein Co.
- Genre: Family and Kids
- Topics: Fairy tales
- Run time: 80 minutes
- MPAA rating: PG
- MPAA explanation: for mild action and thematic elements.
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Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.