628. Grey Wolf and Little Red Riding Hood – Garri Bardin

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SUMMARY: Little Red Riding Hood takes a pie from Moscow to Paris for her Grandma, all the while trying to avoid the Wolf, who has a new set of stainless steel teeth.

WHY IT’S HERE: Garri Bardin’s exquisite reimagining of the ‘Little Red Riding Hood’ story is a landmark Russian animation by Garri Bardin, which joyfully examines the crumbling of the old Soviet Union while still presenting an enjoyable fairy tale that children will appreciate on a different level. As well as its political allusions, ‘Grey Wolf and Little Red Riding Hood’ is also stuffed with references to classic animation and songs. The majority of the dialogue is set to music, with familiar tunes like ‘Mack the Knife’ and ‘La Vie En Rose’ given new lyrics about hunger, teeth and pies! Bardin’s crude Claymation figures are perfect, creating a creepily grotesque world in which the initially gaunt wolf is able to consume two thirds of the film’s cast, including Claymation versions of Disney’s 3 little pigs and seven dwarves. Also making a cameo are icons of Russian animation Gena the Crocodile and Cheburashka, who also end up sitting undigested in the wolf’s stomach. Lively and compellingly weird, with wonderfully wonky sets and awkwardly lumpy characters, Bardin has created a masterpiece in ‘Grey Wolf and Little Red Riding Hood’, at whatever level you choose to engage with it.

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