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69

Generally favorable reviews - based on 41 Critics What's this?

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6.1

Generally favorable reviews- based on 274 Ratings

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  • Summary: Into the Woods is a modern twist on the beloved Brothers Grimm fairy tales, intertwining the plots of a few choice stories and exploring the consequences of the characters’ wishes and quests. This humorous and heartfelt musical follows the classic tales of Cinderella (Anna Kendrick), LittleInto the Woods is a modern twist on the beloved Brothers Grimm fairy tales, intertwining the plots of a few choice stories and exploring the consequences of the characters’ wishes and quests. This humorous and heartfelt musical follows the classic tales of Cinderella (Anna Kendrick), Little Red Riding Hood (Lilla Crawford), Jack and the Beanstalk (Daniel Huttlestone), and Rapunzel (MacKenzie Mauzy)—all tied together by an original story involving a baker and his wife (James Corden & Emily Blunt), their wish to begin a family and their interaction with the witch (Meryl Streep) who has put a curse on them. [Walt Disney Pictures] Expand
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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 31 out of 41
  2. Negative: 0 out of 41
  1. Reviewed by: Stephen Holden
    Dec 24, 2014
    90
    Into the Woods, the splendid Disney screen adaptation of the Stephen Sondheim-James Lapine musical, infuses new vitality into the tired marketing concept of entertainment for “children of all ages.” That usually translates to mean only children and their doting parents. But with Into the Woods, you grow up with the characters, young and old, in a lifelong process of self-discovery.
  2. Reviewed by: Marc Mohan
    Dec 27, 2014
    83
    The big star with the most unexpected chops, though, is Chris Pine, who runs with his Prince Charming role and, along with Billy Magnussen as Rapunzel's Prince, contributes the movie's best musical moment with the duet "Agony."
  3. Reviewed by: David Rooney
    Dec 17, 2014
    80
    This twisty fairy-tale mash-up shows an appreciation for the virtues of old-fashioned storytelling, along with a welcome dash of subversive wit. It benefits from respect for the source material, enticing production values and a populous gallery of sharp character portraits from a delightful cast.
  4. Reviewed by: Rex Reed
    Dec 17, 2014
    75
    Another example of concept over coherence, but the entertainment value is considerable.
  5. Reviewed by: Peter Travers
    Dec 24, 2014
    63
    Yes, the sets and costumes elicit swoons, but it's the peerless Sondheim score, however truncated, that makes this Woods a prime destination.
  6. Reviewed by: R. Kurt Osenlund
    Dec 19, 2014
    63
    This PG-rated romp is, refreshingly, less notable for its happily-ever-afters than its oh-no-they-didn'ts.
  7. Reviewed by: Mike Scott
    Dec 22, 2014
    40
    As strong as that cast and those visuals are, however, they don't quite add up enough to guarantee a happily-ever-after for moviegoers looking for a memorable in-theater experience.

See all 41 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 55 out of 104
  2. Negative: 32 out of 104
  1. Dec 27, 2014
    10
    This is one of the most captivating and affecting film adaptations of a stage musical I've seen! As a word of caution, do NOT presume thatThis is one of the most captivating and affecting film adaptations of a stage musical I've seen! As a word of caution, do NOT presume that because the plot is based upon "interwoven fairy tales" this is intended to be a feel-good kids' movie. Acquaint yourself with the (excellent) 3-hour Sondheim musical and you'll soon realize that the aim of this story is to explore what occurs *beyond* the happy endings. The events of the second half are dark, yes; but the overall message is hopeful (listen to the words of the movie's final two songs). Certain changes and omissions were necessary to get the film version down to a palatable running length, and huge fans of the stage musical may be put off by some of these. Personally, though, I feel that they were appropriate given the totally different demands of each medium. I was blown away by the performances and the amazing vocal talents of the cast as a whole. The actors pulled off those notoriously intricate Sondheim arrangements beautifully -- and there are many moments of humor to lighten the mood. In particular, Chris Pine as the "charming-not-sincere" prince gave an especially funny, tongue-in-cheek performance. This movie is a reflection of life itself with a magical fairy tale twist: colorful, touching, energetic, humorous, sad, ultimately uplifting and so very, very well done. Expand
  2. Dec 26, 2014
    9
    This movie of Stephen Sondheim's musical mashes up the plots and characters from several fairy tales into a wonderfully amusing and darkThis movie of Stephen Sondheim's musical mashes up the plots and characters from several fairy tales into a wonderfully amusing and dark entertainment (although a little more Disneyfied and less dark than the original). The cast is in great voice, but their performances (and the ability to clearly hear the brilliantly clever lyrics) make it a delight. Meryl Streep brings her authenticity to nuanced and touching brilliance as the Witch and Chris Pine's arrogant prince reveals his comic charms better than "Horrible Bosses 2" does. Director Rob Marshall successfully shortened it. He keeps it grounded in the humor and humanity, without resorting to dazzling cinematic tricks. Lovers of the stage show will be pleased with this spirited and smart adaptation. Note to parents: even though it's not lascivious or violent, this is not a typical fairy tale family film. Expand
  3. Feb 2, 2015
    8
    Into the Woods is an interesting film. It does what many other fairy tales never even think off. It does not have a happy ending but that'sInto the Woods is an interesting film. It does what many other fairy tales never even think off. It does not have a happy ending but that's because it is not suppose to have a happy ending. The theme of the film is hope even in the darkest time. Sure some of the characters are killed off awkwardly and the tone is uneven but the acting especially by Meryl Streep is incredible and the soundtrack is awesome. Overall this film soars. Expand
  4. Jan 11, 2015
    6
    With the charm of Rob Marshall, this musical adaptation stays true to its source work and remains truly devoted to Sondheim. Over time, IntoWith the charm of Rob Marshall, this musical adaptation stays true to its source work and remains truly devoted to Sondheim. Over time, Into the Woods does lose its way but it is difficult to deny the triumph of Meryl Streep and Emily Blunt. Expand
  5. May 15, 2015
    5
    Thought it would be worthy of a good musical but the way they made it didn't make it impressive to me, and there wasn't enough entertainmentThought it would be worthy of a good musical but the way they made it didn't make it impressive to me, and there wasn't enough entertainment in a portion of the latter

    my own brother went to far to saying he hated the film with a passion and thought it was annoying and that he felt like killing himself in there

    I just wanna say sorry that I didn't enjoy the movie because I believe I learned a lesson that goes to show nothing beats BROADWAY and not even Disney could change that
    Expand
  6. Dec 27, 2014
    3
    This movie would have been great in 1975. Not great in 2014. Compare this to say the good animated movies of the year and it doesn't comeThis movie would have been great in 1975. Not great in 2014. Compare this to say the good animated movies of the year and it doesn't come close. Lego, Big Hero 6, and a handful of others have more spirit, more humor, more cleverness in 10 minutes than this full movie. People WANT to like this movie...it has a nice enough theme and ending. But it is a stale concept and has been done a thousand times before. Expand
  7. Apr 14, 2015
    0
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. All I can think is now, I'm going to have to carefully review Disney movies for my child to watch. I'm very disappointed from a certain song that wants to devour a lil girl. In words you do not want your child to hear. Lets just say, if you was ever in another room and you heard that song. You will be screaming to turn off that perverted show or movie. Everyone I watched this movie with, can see that song for years to come showing up in shows like "Criminal Minds, Law and Order SVU" to name just a couple. Worst part is you just know, that their are now sexual predators playing that song over and over. Sickening song. But apparently the sexual predator vibe is ok, even in a Disney movie now. Also, a home-wrecking scene of literally a prince cheating. Literally cheating on his wife with a married woman. Then the whole ordeal of a song of who was to blame for cheating? Child appropriate? Somewhere in there, you have a witch making a woman ten months pregnant and out pops a baby, in the same day From the first Min to the last, this was not a child appropriate movie.. How was any of that appropriate for what should have been a child appropriate Disney Movie? I'm so disappointed in Disney. The brand is known for such great quality family entertainment, that is child appropriate. If your going to do a movie like that, create a new brand to go with it. For example, Nora Roberts doesn't put her name under her Eve series. Instead she goes by J.D. Robb. Still her but the brand, you could say changes. Cause you just made a ton of people extremely wary of the Disney brand now. And rightfully soo. Very disappointed. Expand

See all 104 User Reviews