This revisionist fairy tale is told from the Wolf's point of view. He was minding his business when along came this precocious little girl, Red Riding Hood. "And the nerve of that cowardly ... See full summary »
This revisionist fairy tale is told from the Wolf's point of view. He was minding his business when along came this precocious little girl, Red Riding Hood. "And the nerve of that cowardly woodsman, daring to hint that I was attacking her", the wolf cries. Naturally, the animals of the forest do not believe him. Written by
When the Wolf tells Red Riding Hood that "people who give presents to each other are the luckiest people in the world" this is a sly reference to the hit 1960s song "People" which was introduced by Barbra Streisand in the Broadway musical "Funny Girl," the songs for which were written by Robert Merril and Jule Styne who also wrote the songs for "Dangerous Christmas." See more »
Musical television special from November 1965, apparently broadcast live by ABC (and with very little rehearsal), is a coy, nutty take on the "Little Red Riding Hood" tale, with music by "Funny Girl" composers Bob Merrill and Jule Styne (who also served as executive producers!). Young Liza Minnelli is Lillian (a.k.a. Red Riding Hood) who fends off the friendship of a lonely, debonair, Shakespeare-quoting forest wolf; when he realizes he's lost her to a singing woodchopper, he decides to have her for dinner (literally). Despite some interesting camera-work (for its time) and good, clear sound, this black-and-white relic isn't very memorable. I'm sure Styne and Merrill left some of these songs off their resume, particularly the Lillian-Wolf duet "Ding-A-Ling". Cyril Ritchard is very confident as the suave wolf (he glides through this unsure production as if he didn't have a nerve in his body), but Minnelli is a different matter. This certainly wasn't Liza's first time in the spotlight (TV or otherwise), but she attacks her moments on camera with the overt eagerness of a brassy, bustling newcomer. Even her quiet solo, "I'm Naive", is jazzed up by Liza's over-emphatic delivery and kinetic body language. Minnelli-buffs will undoubtedly want to take a look, but the story and the songs don't really go together, and the Christmas theme is practically irrelevant.
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