Critic Reviews

69

Metascore

Based on 41 critic reviews provided by Metacritic.com
88
Marshall deserves credit for knowing how to shoot and cut (alongside editor Wyatt Smith, “Thor: The Dark World”) a musical number, and his work here ranks much closer to his success with “Chicago” than to his dismal “Nine.”
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.
80
The film is a whirl of pure pleasure that just keeps whirling: Sondheim doesn’t write show-stoppers but show-surgers, and from the moment the glorious opening number whips up, introducing the central players, the film cartwheels onwards until it lands at its unexpected but quite beautiful happy-ever-after.
75
Another example of concept over coherence, but the entertainment value is considerable.
70
Marshall hasn’t made one of the great movie musicals here, but he hasn’t bungled it either — far from it.
70
I’m only half-kidding when I suggest that you see the movie but leave (especially if you have kids) at what’s obviously the end of the first act. You’ll still get the dissonances, ambiguities, and portents of doom, along with much that is pure enchantment. And you won’t leave thinking the movie had been made by the Big Bad Wolf.
67
The first two-thirds of the film, which are like the Brothers Grimm's Greatest Hits on laughing gas, have a fizzy, fairy-dust energy. But as soon as the baker couple's scavenger hunt is over and a rampaging giant appears, Woods loses its magic and momentum and sags like an airless balloon.
63
Slant Magazine
This PG-rated romp is, refreshingly, less notable for its happily-ever-afters than its oh-no-they-didn'ts.
60
Loyal fans of the Sondheim original may feel a bit let down themselves. There’s much to love here. But working with original “Woods” writer and Sondheim collaborator James Lapine, Marshall tones down the crucial dark shading in some places and has trouble with pacing in others.
50
Village Voice
Rob Marshall simply cuts from one tale to the next, isolating his actors. There's little sense that the fairytale space is a shared one -- it's just a bunch of noisy incident transpiring in unrelated treestands.

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