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Into the Woods weaves together the tales of Little Red Riding Hood, Cinderella, Jack and the Beanstalk, and Rapunzel, all through the telling of a childless baker and his wife who venture – you guessed it – into the woods, to reverse a curse placed on the former’s house.

Meryl Streep stars as the witch, a Mother Gothel striving to regain her youth. It was taken from her ages ago when the baker’s father stole her magic beans (yes, those beans) along with other vegetables for his pregnant wife (The audience gets to hear Meryl rap during this revelation!).

To punish the baker’s father for stealing her plants, the witch put an infertility curse on his house, which explains why the poor couple, played beautifully by James Corden and Emily Blunt, haven’t been able to conceive.

In order to reverse the curse, the couple must find the hair as yellow as corn, a cow as white as milk, a shoe as red as blood, and a slipper as pure as gold. They must bring these items to the witch before the rise of the blue moon or hope is lost forever.

Coincidentally, Cinderella (Anna Kendrick) is heading into the woods during this time with her wished-into-reality gold slippers for the prince’s ball. Jack (Daniel Huttlestone) is making his way to the next town with his white cow to try to get money for food, and Red is, of course, heading to Grandmother’s house – which for some reason is in a tree, in a completely isolated area of the forest.

Rapunzel is in the woods, because she lives there, trapped in a tower, as the story goes.

Kendrick plays Cinderella endearingly, falling for a man who turns out to be not quite all that she expected.

Streep is dazzling as the witch from her costume to her surprise rapping and ability to easily glide between being a vulnerable woman to a vindictive, all powerful witch.

The baker and his wife were a high point, with Blunt radiating sincerity in her performance and genuinely drawing me into her storyline.

Corden was an absolute delight as the baker, and if anyone was unsure of the new The Late Late Show host’s abilities to captivate an audience, they need only view this performance – if pressed for time, even just “It Takes Two.” It’s a joy.

Chris Pine was a surprise as Cinderella’s Prince, reminding me of something akin to an ’80s rock star, with his flamboyant swagger. “Agony,” sung with his royal brother, played by Billy Magnussen, was ridiculous – in a good way – and hilarious.

Johnny Depp’s wolf also elicited laughs, but I’m not sure that’s a good thing. The rest of the cast held their own, with young Jack having a particularly strong voice, but those aforementioned characters stood out the most.

The movie is long, coming in at 124 minutes. I’d like to say it didn’t feel that way, but it wouldn’t be completely truthful. To be fair, it was announced (inaccurately) in my theater that they wouldn’t be validating parking, so during the last few musical numbers my mind was just processing possible calculations. Math is not my forte.

Another drawback for me was the dark nature of the film. Now, it does follow the true fairytale stories. However, they are usually edited for the sake of children’s films. Death, infidelity, and mutilation are all a part of Into the Woods. It seems strange for a Disney musical debuting on Christmas day.

That aside, the singing is wonderful, and all of the performances – good and bad – are memorable. Your journey Into the Woods will certainly be an enjoyable one, you just might come out of it a little bit worse for wear.