Hoodwinked Too! Hood vs. Evil Mike Disa

Hoodwinked Too! Hood vs. Evil Mike Disa
While most films, animated and live action alike, tend to work better on the big screen, benefiting from larger-than-life picture and sound that demand attention, Hoodwinked Too actually works better on home video. The modest animation and decidedly chaotic, relentless tone feel less cheap and abrasive on a smaller screen, where there is some sanctity in being able to adjust volume, press pause and occasionally walk away. While this might sound like a lowball insult towards a harmless kid's film about a kung-fu fighting Red Riding Hood (Hayden Panettiere) trying to rescue her grandmother (Glenn Close) from a wicked witch (Joan Cusack) intent on stealing a magic truffle recipe, I'm actually serious when I say that it's more enjoyable the second time around when watching from home. It's easier to notice the little snippets of cleverness amidst the broad jokes about "number two," such as puns about "taking a bite out of crime" while biting into the gingerbread house where Hansel and Gretel (Bill Hader and Amy Poehler) were held captive. There are also fun periphery gags, such as the London Bridge Sanitarium ("for when your sanity is falling down") that reference the nursery rhyme and fairy tale origins of the text. It's just unfortunate that everything else is so aggressively desultory, jumping over plot points with barely a mention of why. Still, it passes the time inoffensively, tossing in a message about controlling emotional reactions and repressing envy, which is better than can be said for many children's films. And for surrealist amusement, the DVD includes three music videos featuring Hayden Panettiere, Lavay Cole and CeeJ getting extremely emotional about Hoodwinked. There are also storyboards and behind-the-scenes footage of voice actors, such as a yodelling Heidi Klum. And if this weren't exciting enough, it also comes with a bunch of stickers. Score! (Alliance)