BY CARMELA FERRO
For years Hollywood has adapted fairy tales for the big screen. Most of them we remember as Disney cartoons, fluffy, bright and with a lesson to be learned at the end. Many of these stories were derived from other countries and were collectively made famous by The Brothers Grimm. The original volumes suffered from intense criticism because they were far from suitable to be called “Children’s Tales.”
In recent years we’ve gotten to see these Grimm tales as they were originally created, raw, dark and, well, grim, for lack of a better word. Here are five live-action fairy tale adaptations from the Grimms’ Fairy Tales.
5) Ever After (1998)
Danielle (Drew Barrymore), is a young cinder girl who lives with her widowed father until he brings home a new wife, an uppity Baroness played by Anjelica Huston. When her father passes away she becomes a servant to her wicked step-mom and step-sisters. One day, she encounters the Crown Prince of France and becomes entangled in a battle of truth, jealousy and freedom.
4) Red Riding Hood (2011)
Valerie (Amanda Seyfried) is a beautiful young woman in love with Peter (Shiloh Fernandez), but she is already arranged to marry a wealthy suitor. Valerie and Peter’s plans to run away together are cut short when they learn that Valerie’s older sister has been killed by the werewolf that prowls the dark forest surrounding their village. The people call on Father Solomon (Gary Oldman), a famed werewolf hunter, to help them kill the beast. His arrival brings consequences and they discover that the wolf, who takes human form by day, could be any one of them.
3) Snow White and the Huntsman (2012)
In this fairy tale The Evil Queen Ravenna (Charlize Theron) kills King Magnus of Tabor on their wedding night and takes over the town, tearing it to ruins as she drains the youth of women to maintain her beauty. When her magic mirror tells her that her stepdaughter, Snow White (Kristen Stewart) is destined to defeat her she must find her and consume her heart in order to gain immortality. Snow White escapes to the Dark Forest and Eric The Huntsman (Chris Hemsworth) is ordered to find her and kill her.
2) Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters (2013)
This fairy tale spin follows Hansel (Jeremy Renner) and Gretel (Gemma Arterton) as bounty hunters who are devoted to killing witches. One night, the powerful grand witch Muriel (Famke Janssen) attacks a party in the town of Augsburg, leaving one local alive to warn the others of incoming doom. The siblings interrogate a witch and discover that they must prepare to fight the witches before the Blood Moon, a ritual which requires sacrificing six boys and six girls.
1) Maleficent (2014)
While this film has yet to be seen there is already a lot to be excited about. For starters it will be from the point of view of Sleeping Beauty’s villain, Maleficent, who will be played by Angelina Jolie. The film will also star Juno Temple, Elle Fanning, Sam Riley and Brangelina’s own Vivienne Jolie-Pitt as the young Princess Aurora. It’s slated for a July 2014 release date, but I think it will be worth the wait.