We had big plans to see this on Christmas Day, but we were hosting my Dad and he didn't seem all that interested in seeing it so we had to wait until yesterday. But it was worth the wait because I was very pleased by it. It's not perfect and I don't think it translated to screen seamlessly, but it was a lot better than I thought. <There Be Spoilers Ahead, Mateys!>
Emily Blunt! She was fantastic! I saw the The Public's Central Park production a few years ago with Amy Adams playing The Baker's Wife, and as much as I enjoy Amy Adams, her acting and singing were just blah. I was afraid the same thing was going to happen here since I don't really know much about Emily Blunt. But wow, I was pleasantly surprised.
James Corden. Very impressive! As my husband pointed out, he's acting was stellar. Acting-wise he blows Chip Zien out of the water. But Chip, of course, has a superior voice.
Anna Kendrick. Her voice is slightly nasally which I found slightly annoying in a few songs, but overall I found her performance amazing. I especially loved her On the Steps of the Palace. Just stellar!
Agony! Wow! They knocked this out-of-the-park! And the biggest laughs of the film.
Little Night Music Easter Egg. Yay! I clapped because I'm a dork. (I also clapped when Sondheim name hit the end credits because: RESPECT!)
Loved that they kept some of the darker elements intact. Like, the cutting off of the toe and heel. And the Baker's Wife and Prince tryst.
Johnny Depp. So, so stupid. I give him kudos for doing a decent job with Sweeney, but otherwise this guy just bugs. The zoot suit was just stupid and I wonder if the Rob Marshall and the rest of the production team just kowtowed to Johnny's vision because one dare not refuse Johnny?
Jack. Ok, he wasn't horrible but his cockney was a bit grating and it just sounded like his Gavroche stepped out of one book and jumped into another. Gavroche is the most annoying thing about Les Mis, so by extension I was annoyed by his general presence, his flat acting, and especially by his uninspired rendition of Giants in the Sky (my favorite song).
Little Red Riding Hood. She wasn't horrible, but a lot of her lines landed flat due to a combo of her age, the direction they went with her, and her acting. Red really needs that scathing sarcasm to pull off those lines.
Comme ci, comme ca:
Meryl. I didn't love her, but I wasn't bothered by her either. She pulled off a very adequate performance. And I was impressed by her (perhaps aided) belting. But I was sad that the majority of the character's dark humor was stripped away. Ah well.
Anyhoo, over all I really enjoyed it. And I plan to see it one or two more times in the theater. Actually I'm seeing Roundabout Theatre's production of it very soon as well. Hmm...is it possible to experience too much Into the Wood?! Well, I'll let you guys know. :-)