Into the Woods


Jessie Christopher , Staff Writer

Into the Woods is a movie adaptation of the stage musical written by Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine. With an adaptation of any kind, be it book, musical, play and so on, there are always strong opinions. These opinions, usually negative, are most of the time always about how closely the movie sticks to the original piece and the Hollywood star casting decisions.

To fit a reasonable time frame it is necessary for bits and pieces to be cut. In the stage musical of Into the Woods there are many songs and some could just not be crammed into a two hour movie. The cuts were obviously well thought out and worked for the most part. Some were taken out merely because the movie had been, “Disneyfied”.
The biggest “agony” of the movie overall was the casting. The biggest casting faux pas was Anna Kendrick as Cinderella. While she was nominated at a young age for a TONY award and does have much experience with musicals, she simply did not fit the role. Her acting was natural and authentic but, it was her singing that was all wrong. The character of Cinderella is supposed to have an effortless, clear as day, classic soprano voice. Kendrick’s, while nice, has a voice simply meant for pop music or contemporary works like her up and coming movie musical, The Last Five Years.

That is the thing about Sondheim’s music. It is so complex most of the time it is hard to fully appreciate the music if you aren’t someone who loves it. This movie was riveting and overall a smashing adaptation, despite it being “disneyfied”. Everyone who loves musicals, Meryl Streep or just wants to experience something out of the norm, this film comes highly recommended