Red Riding Hood

Featured In Issue 158, July/August 2011

WSR Score3.5
Basic Information on new release titles is posted as soon as titles are announced. Once reviewed, additional data is added to the database.
Warner Home Video
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Violence and creature terror, and some sexuality
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Single Side, Dual Layer (BD-50)
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Not Indicated
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(THX® Digitally Mastered):
Catherine Hardwicke
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Dolby Digital 5.1, DTS HD Lossless 5.1
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(French Language):
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Red Riding Hood is the tale of a beautiful young villager Valerie (Seyfried), who is promised in marriage to one man but in love with another. The people of the medieval village of Daggerhorn have maintained an uneasy truce with the local werewolf, who prowls at every full moon. Her troubles intensify when the werewolf rejects its monthly animal sacrifice to quench its appetite and kills Valerie's older sister. When werewolf hunter Father Solomon (Oldman) tells the villagers that the werewolf is disguised among the villages in human form by day and could be any one of them, Valerie discovers a unique connection to the werewolf. Their connection inexorably draws them together, making her both suspect...and bait. (Gary Reber)

The two-disc combo set includes viewing either the Blu-ray Disc™ theatrical version or the alternate cut version (01:40:24), as well as the DVD theatrical version and a digital copy of the film. Special features include "Secrets Behind The Red Cloak" picture-in-picture Bonus View commentary with Catherine Hardwicke, Amanda Seyfried, Shiloh Fernandez, and Max Irons; four featurettes The Reinvention Of Red Riding Hood (HD 05:25), Red Riding Hood: Making Of The Score (HD 10:59), Casting Tapes (HD 07:24), and Red Riding Hood In 73 Seconds (HD 01:28); four deleted scenes (HD 04:18); a gag reel (HD 02:37); two music videos (HD 05:27); up-front previews; and BD-Live functionality.

The 2.40:1 1080p AVC picture is warmly rendered with a rich and vibrant, saturated color palette. Hues are toned in browns and gold, especially during the night scenes lit by torch. Valerie's red-hooded robe starkly contrasts against the white snow in effectively contrasted scenes. Blacks, exhibited in the werewolf's hair, are deep and solid, and shadow delineation is revealing. Fleshtones are naturally hued. Resolution is excellent, with details revealed in facial features, the werewolf, clothing, and object textures in wooden structures. A layer of grain enhances the cinematic quality of the picture. Dimensionality is impressive throughout. This is a beautifully photographed picture, with strong saturated qualities that enhance the dark storytelling and deliver an engaging visual experience. (Gary Reber)

The DTS-HD Master Audio™ 5.1-channel soundtrack is superb, with an aggressive holosonic® soundfield presence. Atmospherics and sound effects are aggressively directionalized throughout the soundfield with effective panning, to intensify the terror. Foley effects are articulate and nicely executed, to convey a medieval village soundscape. Low-frequency energy is strong in the .1 LFE channel, with sub-25 Hz bass that provides a solid sonic foundation to the suspense. The orchestral music score is haunting, with a wide and deep soundstage presence and strong energy in the surround channels. The sound is dynamic and revealing of orchestral timbre. Dialogue is natural sounding and spatially integrated, for a convincing perception of realism. This is a really effective soundtrack that sounds enveloping and dynamically haunting, and is engaging throughout. (Gary Reber)