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DVD Review: Hoodwinked Too! Hood vs. Evil

August 16, 2011

Hoodwinked Too! Hood vs. Evil – An Alliance Films’ Release

http://hoodwinkedtoomovie.com/

DVD Release Date: August 16th, 2011

Rated G for violence

Running time: 86 minutes

Mike Disa (dir.)

Mike Disa (writer)

Cory Edwards (writer)

Todd Edwards (writer)

Tony Leech (writer)

Murray Gold (music)

Tom Keane (music)

Hayden Panettiere as Red Riding Hood (voice)

Glenn Close as Granny Puckett (voice)

Patrick Warburton as The Big Bad Wolf (voice)

Joan Cusack as Verushka the Witch (voice)

Our reviews below:

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Hoodwinked Too! Hood vs. Evil DVD Review By John C.

* (out of 4)

Red Riding Hood (Hayden Panettiere) is called back into action with the Happily Ever After detective agency, when two kids by the names of Hansel (Bill Hader) and Gretal (Amy Poehler) suddenly disappear.  With a little help from Granny (Glenn Close), The Big Bad Wolf (Patrick Warburton) and a hyperactive squirrel named Twitchy (Cory Edwards), they must rescue the kids before they go in the oven and defeat an evil witch known as Verushka (Joan Cusack).  Despite having such a talented voice cast, everyone here just sounds really bored.

The original Hoodwinked was a surprisingly funny little send-up of classic fairy tales, and somewhat of an overlooked delight for those of all ages.  The deliberately cheesy animation was all a part of the joke.  But with a unbelivably lame script and some of the weakest CGI animation that I’ve seen in a mainstream film, the utterly pointless Hoodwinked Too! Hood vs. Evil is a joyless mess of a movie.  No wonder why it took so long for this to see the light of day.  Despite only running for a thankfully short 86-minutes, anyone above a certain age will find this hackneyed and annoying sequel nearly impossible to endure without falling asleep.

The DVD includes a couple of featurettes and several music videos.

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Hoodwinked Too! Hood vs. Evil DVD Review by Erin V.  

1/2 a star (out of 4)

In Hoodwinked Too! – Hood vs. Evil, we open with Wolf (Patrick Warburton), Granny (Glenn Close), and Twitchy the Squirrel (Cory Edwards) all on a mission to save the kidnapped children Hansel and Gretel from a mean witch in a candy house.  Red (Hayden Pennetairre) is not with them, as she is training at a super secret facility that trains in Kung Fu baking, which is where her Granny got her skills.  When Granny is kidnapped, as is a super-secret-recipe from the facility, Red has to come back to the Happily Ever After team run by Nicky Flippers (David Ogden Stiers) to help save the day.

The first Hoodwinked! was a pleasant surprise, surviving on a sharp script that played its cheaper visuals as a joke.  For those who aren’t familiar with it, Hoodwinked! told the story of Little Red Riding Hood as a crime scene from separate perspectives of Red, the Wolf, the Woodcutter, and Granny, using their intertwining tales to solve a separate mystery – and it has a twist that on first viewing will not necessarily be guessed.  Although the good voice cast for the principal roles all returned, (except for Anne Hathaway who was replaced by Hayden Penettiere as Red), this one unfortunately does not have that one thing the first had is needed – a good script.

With a storyline and villains disappointingly worthy of a Dora the Explorer episode/cheap video game, there isn’t much on screen to please those out of the 5-9 year old market.  Watching this film, I felt that this is like a nightmare as a writer – to try to write something good and find it to just fall flat on every level.  On the other hand, I feel sorry for the writer that thought this was really good at all (which I would kind of doubt ever happened).  The jokes are not funny, and the amount of drama/tension between the characters they try to put in just feels forced and fake, and never allows us to connect with them – at all.  The characters here just all come off as kind of sad and whiny at times, and totally not in tune with either each other or even their own movie – which in itself is lame.  This is a complete capitalization on the surprise success of the first film.

I’ve seen some bad movies recently, but somehow this one just seems even worse.  In some ways it seems like attempted emotion falling flat comes across as comedy falling flat – at least here…  There really is nothing here worth checking out – unless you find this in a dollar bin and want to buy something to place your young kids in front of while you get some work done…  And even then – they could do with better.  Way better.

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Hoodwinked Too! Hood vs. Evil DVD Review By Nicole

*1/2 (out of 4)

**1/2 (for its intended audience of 4-10)

I really liked the first Hoodwinked film.  It was quirky, surprisingly intelligent and totally original.  Hoodwinked Too! Hood vs. Evil has none of these qualities.  It is fine for the under-10 crowd, but anyone over that age will be bored.  Red (Hayden Pennetierre) is now training with the sisters of the hood, an Asian monastery that teaches recipes and martial arts.  When witch Verushka (Joan Cusack) steals a secret recipe and allegedly kidnaps Hansel (Bill Hader) and Gretal (Amy Poehler) it is up to Red, Granny Pucket (Glenn Close), Wolf (Patrick Warburton) and Twitchy the squirrel (Cory Edwards) to save the day.

While the animation here is okay and the characters are charming, the script and storyline feel like a children’s cartoon.  Rent it if you have kids to use as a babysitter, while you do something else.

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Hoodwinked Too! Hood vs. Evil DVD Review By Maureen

*1/2 (out of 4)

Red (Hayden Penettiere) is at it again.  This time in Hoodwinked Too! Red with the help of Granny (Glenn Close), Wolf (Patrick Warburton), Twitchy (Cory Edwards) with the help of the Sisters of the Hood have to rescue two big-eyed innocent children named Hansel (Bill Hader) and Gretal (Amy Poehler) from a wicked witch (Joan Cusack).  Sounds really exciting, right?  Well, that’s where the viewer gets hoodwinked – it’s not.

The original Hoodwinked was a lot of quirky, cleverly written fun.  The characters and storyline felt original.  I’m not quite sure what happened with this sequel.  Somehow the characters all lost their collective edge.  Everything felt flat and very ordinary.  There’s no doubt the under-10 crowd may be attracted to the brightly coloured, big-eyed characters on the front of the DVD package.  However, what’s inside is no different than much of the mediocre children’s programming available on 24 hours specialty channels.

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Hoodwinked Too! Hood vs. Evil DVD Review By Tony

(out of 4)

Hoodwinked Too! Hood vs. Evil is a sequel to the surprisingly good Hoodwinked! (2005). Made for about $15 million, the original grossed over three times that much. Made for about $30 million, the sequel has made less than half that amount back, and I am afraid deservedly so. Though it looked cheap, Hoodwinked! had a really clever mystery plot seen from several completely different viewpoints and very witty dialogue delivered by a strong voice cast led by Anne Hathaway as Red.

With a few new voices and much of the original voice cast (with the exception of Hayden Panettiere adequately replacing Anne Hathaway), acting is not the problem. Revolving around Hansel und Gretel with Red proving herself worthy as a Sister Hood at a mountaintop retreat, the story really doesn’t go anywhere, and every attempt at humour falls flat. Perhaps young children will like it, but then they wouldn’t get the cultural references misfired at adults. Moreover, despite the bigger budget, the childish animation is only marginally better, all the worse since Toronto’s Starz (which gave us the brilliant 9 and delightful Gnomeo and Juliet) has their name on it, though the bulk of the work was outsourced, based on the hundreds of Korean names scrolling by on the endless closing credits. Maybe the film could be revived at drive-ins, for those who like the sound of crickets.

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Consensus: With poor animation and an all-star voice cast who all sound bored with the roles of their once appealing characters, Hoodwinked Too! Hood vs. Evil is a pointless and utterly boring sequel to the surprisingly witty original.  (Out of 4)

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