Making ‘Little Red Riding Hood’, the final assignment for MDA1300

Once again, a missed assignment from last year, shame on me, honestly. But here am I, with this finished product, and I’d like to write about how it all came to being.

The whole purpose of this assignment was to adapt a well-known story that we discussed on the classes of MDA1800 (Storytelling for the Screen). The stories you could choose from were, for example, a story from Genesis, the Bible; the good Samaritan; Little Red Riding Hood; etc. I’ve chosen Little Red Riding Hood, although I’ve had an original screenplay for an adaptation of the story of the Serpent and Eve in the Bible, but I dropped that idea. I came up with a new screenplay for a Little Red Riding Hood adaption.

Actually, I know what Little Red Riding Hood is really all about. It’s a coming-of-age story, a naive girl who faces something really wild and violent for the first time. A naive world invaded by a totally different idea. Some people say this story is about sexuality and how Little Red Riding Hood loses her “virginity” on the way to her… uhm, grandma. I’m completely aware of all this, so I chose not to adapt the “meaning” of this story, but to adapt the events themselves, and people can interpret these events in any way they want.

So my story is about a guy who has to visit one of his girl friends, who is pretty ill. The guy wants to take some medicine to the poor girl, so he begins his journey to her. On the way he gets constantly interrupted and stopped by a man extremely faithful to God, who wants to “spread the word” and tries to sell Bibles. Our main hero doesn’t want to buy anything from this man, so he always tells him to go away. After he finally gets to the girl, he discovers that the girl’s home became ornamented with a lot of religious objects and symbols. When he wants to ask the girl about this, the same exact Man of Faith from the streets comes in to the room. He is introduced as a new friend of the girl, and the girl is revealed to be a newly turned believer. Our main hero gets angry and kills the Man of Faith… oops.

I think this whole adaptation stands pretty close to the original, regardin certain events and storylines. In bringing this story to life I once again collaborated with Peter Miskolczi, with whom I worked with on other assignments before (see previous post).

He suggested, and I agreed, that in cinematography he would use a lot of tilted angle shots, you can see a huge amount of examples for this in the film. Thus, you aren’t really sure whether it’s the characters that aren’t in place, or the whole world…? Nice little touch, I think.

Other than this, I wanted the film to have a “natural look”, mainly in colours. I didn’t feel the urge to create something that looks unnatural in colours, as I seldom feel this when making films. For some reason I’d like to create absurdism, surrealism or some kind of unnatural “feeling” not by the looks of the film, but by events and characters in it.

The use of cartoonic sound effects and short music cues was an intentional choice once again. I think this whole film has a “free range” of what you can do with it, it’s once again the same thing as in the films discussed in the previous blog post. I like to put things in my films just for fun, or just because I feel that they would look good in it. I don’t always look for the reasoning. I like to think of my stories and films as something that is free to mess with, something I can experiment with them. I really like this freedom when it comes to stories and bringing these stories to life.

We put this film together in 2 days, we were in a little bit of hurry, but I don’t think that it was rushed. I think I completely achieved what I wanted regarding the looks and the atmosphere of it, in a huge part thanks to my cinematographer, Peter, with whom I have a great “artistic” connection (although I don’t see ourselves as artists). So here it is, ‘Little Red Riding Hood’:

Written, directed and edited by Gergo Hahn (that’s me)
Cinematography by Peter Miskolczi
Little Red Riding Hood – Gergo Hahn
Grandma – Claudia Meszaros
The Wolf – Kristof Laszlo

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