A few months ago, I wrote about how I understood my brother’s annoyance at people trying to talk sports with him, in relation to the MCU. This week, I have finally understood the pure horrifying rage that many of my fanboy friends feel about all kinds of things.
But mostly about Man of Steel and Batfleck.
I’m of course talking about the rumors that are going around about Disney’s adaptation of Into The Woods.
While I admire the fact that Disney did some PR magic by having the announced changes come from Stephen Sondheim himself, it doesn’t make me at all OK with what the changes are going to be.
According to statements made by Mr. Sondheim, Rapunzel will not die in Act II, nor will Cinderella’s Prince and The Baker’s Wife have a hurried um, “moment in the woods.”
Now, I’m kind of OK with some plot changes when things move from stage to film. It’s necessary a lot of the time. Take West Side Story. When “America” becomes a bickering match between Anita and Bernardo, rather than all of the girls picking on poor homesick Rosalia, it deepens the tragedy of Bernardo’s death and twists the knife of Anita’s sexual assault. We see what they’re like as a couple (awesome) and makes the rejection of her adopted homeland that much more heartbreaking. (“You make this world lousy!”)
But to remove these two events from Into The Woods not only undermines the point of the piece (sometimes when you get what you want, you’re still unsatisfied, also, there are consequences to your actions.) but also removes 2 of the best songs. “Lament” and “Any Moment/Moments in The Woods,” which is a bummer because the they are really awesome songs and Meryl Streep is the Witch, and Emily Blunt and Chris Pine are the Baker’s Wife and The Prince respectively and those scenes would probably have been great.
But I of course, upon hearing the news got all pouty and tweeted that “This is why people shouldn’t try to adapt Sondheim!” And realized I sounded like one of those jerks who was all “Superman doesn’t kill!” and “in the books Neville ends up with Hannah Abbott, not Luna,” and “I hate that for 5 seconds Hayden Christiansen is now in Return Of The Jedi.” And so I added #theatresnob to make it seem like I was joking.
But I wasn’t. The A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To The Forum movie is a good movie but a bad, bad adaptation. The less I say about Sweeney Todd the better. (I hate, hate, hate that movie. HATE!) And now they’re mangling the second half of Into The Woods, to make it family friendly.
Disney, If you want a family friendly musical, don’t go for Sondheim. Just don’t. Hell, if you want a friendly musical don’t go for Sondheim. That’s not the point of Sondheim. Sondheim is about challenging you and making you think and probably cry, and developing masterful characters and maybe a ballad about what’s important in life.
I mean, what’s next? A movie version of Company where Robert marries Amy and they have a baby?
I mean, I have a fanfic someone can buy if they’re interested…