Disney is stepping back into their fairy-tale musical genre which made films such as ‘Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs’ an instant classic.
‘Into the Woods’ is essentially about a story that focuses on a family of bakers, played by Emily Blunt and James Corden, who wishes to have a child, but can’t as their house is cursed by a witch, played by Meryl Streep. But they need four items to break the curse, as they head into the woods (sorry, I had too).
This film is charming as you see all of these fairy-tale characters interacting with one another, similar to ‘Once Upon A Time’.
What this film does well is the music and the songs. While there are a very few weak songs, most songs are catchy and entertaining to listen too. My favourite songs include the catchy opening number “Prologue: Into the Woods” which was a nice introduction to these fairy-tale characters and developed their personality perfectly. Other songs which I enjoyed are “Stay With Me” and “No One Is Alone”, both offering emotional sides to the characters. This film also reminded me a bit of ‘Les Misérables’ in both the songs and some scenes.
The cast is great, but the standouts were Emily Blunt and Anna Kendrick providng stellar acting performances. While others like James Corden, Meryl Streep and MacKenzie Mauzy were also quite good. Like I said, the cast is great, all fitting into their roles brilliantly, with the exception of Johnny Depp as the Wolf. While Depp does bring a character to life in past productions such as the ‘Pirates of the Caribbean’ series and ‘Edward Scissorhands’, Depp seems miscast, but it might be the character which was uninteresting, and only had a very small part in a very large film, running for 2 hours.
There are a few problems with the film, like the film’s final third act, which is quite good, starts to feel overlong and some omissions to the character’s story which sometimes comes out of the blue, an example being the prince and Cinderella.
But for the most part, I enjoyed ‘Into the Woods’ a lot. The acting is great, the story is fun and enjoyable, the songs are catchy and delightful, with only a few problems with the film’s sometimes slow pacing and the third act a little disjointed with the rest of the film, ‘Into the Woods’ is a great family film which captures the magic and charm of this fairy-tale world.