Red Hoods, Dark Woods Part III: The Beast Within…
What further embeds the tale in horror is the fact that the Big Bad Wolf can be seen as a werewolf – another handy metaphor for physical and emotional transformation. In some of the earlier versions of the tale, which took the form of oral folk stories, it was actually a werewolf menacing Red Riding Hood. Werewolves - humans who are condemned to spend their lives transforming into bloodthirsty beasts when the moon is full - are a common theme in mythology and folklore throughout the world, as well as in literature and cinema. They usually serve as allegories of our internal primal instincts and intrinsic savagery, buried deep down under years of civilisation and social conventions – but still lurking there nonetheless. The transformation of human into monster is representative of the manifestation of inner conflict - surrendering to the animal within, and to the primitive side of our nature. Most werewolf stories are concerned, on some level or other, with exploring the consequences of unleashed moral and sexual desires, serving as allegories to warn us of the dangers of indulging our ‘animal’ instincts.
|'The Company of Wolves' by Emily Tenshi|
|'The Big Bad Wolf' by Graham Franciose|
Catherine Hardwicke’s sensibilities and preoccupation with younger characters attempting to find themselves, and her choice of cast, compliments and at times even seems filtered (albeit in a rather diluted way) through Carter’s own approach to Red Riding Hood as a tale of the empowerment of young women. Red Riding Hood features a trinity of actresses renowned for their portrayals of strong, complex women in a myriad of unconventional roles and movies: Julie Christie, Virginia Madsen and Amanda Seyfried.
|'Red Riding Hood' by Fleury Francois Richard|