(Review originally written at 30 January 2008)

The title sounds as if this is some bad horror but this is a quite charming little Christmas special from 1965, starring the teenager Liza Minnelli in her first leading role.

With this movie Minnelli goes into her mother's footsteps. She dances and sings her way through this movie. She of course had a great example and teacher to look up at in the form of her mother Judy Garland, who starred in dozens of musical movies. Also her father Vincente Minnelli was no stranger to the genre and was an acclaimed and well known musical movie director.

Yes, Liza Minnelli is good and enjoyable in her role in this movie and shows that she can sign and dance. Something that would eventually even get her an Oscar 8 years later for her role in the movie version of "Cabaret". She is however not the most attractive person within the genre. She is not attractive no and she even wasn't in 1965. It's perhaps a reason why she never became such a big musical star as her mother was, even though she also wasn't among the best looking actresses of her time.

The movie is quite cheerful and therefore also charming. It features some good songs and characters that pop up. Cyril Ritchard is really great in his role as the Big Bad Wolf.

But how exactly is this a Christmas special? Just because there is a Christmas tree in the back doesn't make the story of Red Riding Hood really feel fitting for a Christmas special. An original attempt to try and re-tell the famous story but also a bit of a silly one.

The movie obviously looks as if it was filmed on a stage and it of course most likely also was but this feels sort of fitting for a TV special and actually suits the movie its atmosphere and overall cheerfulness quite well.

It's a good watch and basically just a fine simply enjoyable 50 minutes.


About Frank Veenstra

Watches movies...writes about them...and that's it for now.
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