What big eyes you have Granny, all the better to watch this film, my dear!
Enjoy the thrilling suspense from The Company of Wolves(Affiliate link), this fantastic British 80’s horror remake of the Brother’s Grimm fable – Little Red Riding Hood. Using the protagonist to tell the story using her dreams. Rosaleen, a peasant girl in the village loves her granny (played by Angela Lansbury) dearly and loves hearing her stories. When Rosaleen’s sister is killed, granny tells her folklore stories to teach her about how cunning and deceiving how werewolves can appear to be.
“Never stray from the path, never eat a windfall apple and never trust a man whose eyebrows meet in the middle.” – Granny (Angela Lansbury)
Rosaleen plays our beloved character of Red Riding hood, making her way to granny’s house, falling for a handsome stranger. This isn’t your usual adaption of the story as its dark fables (told by granny) see these wolves turn into scary werewolves, domestic abuse and gory decapitation.
Sexual deviance and sexual metaphors all the way through the film. A girls innocence plagued by an older man’s charm and he makes her make a pact that if he gets to her granny’s before her, she has to kiss him, determination to make her his she wolf and her desperation to become part of the pack of wolves.
One of Granny’s stories starts with a traveller and his newly wed wife. on their wedding night, he disappears and over time she doesn’t see him for years. Time passes and she moves on and marries again, he comes home to see she has kids, yet they are not his… he knows she has someone else and you see a wolf form from his face and starts attacking her.
Another story is based off a lavish wedding where a heavily pregnant witch wants revenge on her groom for walking out on her. She turns the entire wedding party into wolves. One of the last tales tells a young she-wolf who climbs from a well, Still in disguise as a wolf, tries to make sense of the human world when she is shot by a man. Because of the pain, she hides behind a gravestone and forms into her human form. Bare naked, she accepts help from a priest, once she heals up, she goes back to the well and returns back to her world below.
When Rosaleen reaches her Granny’s cottage, she sees whom she thinks is her granny in bed and starts to question her. Until she realises it isn’t. The handsome stranger proceeds to get that kiss promised to him. Rosaleen admits she wants to be a wolf and be in their company, leaving the final scene of her exiting her granny’s cottage as a she-wolf herself.
I will say how incredibly sexist looking back now in 2021 as it depicts all men the same. But for me, i enjoy it for the gore, the fables and for an old film created in 1984, it’s scarier than some of the new releases out there today. Especially for the technology back in their day. A fantastic story that has revolutionised a basic child’s story into a sadistic one and one that teaches young women a valuable lesson about Puberty and growing up. It also creatively shows that sometimes things are not always like we read in fairy tales and a fantastical representation of how some men can be beasts.
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