We've seen this story before: Laid-back charmer meets sharp-witted woman and falls for her only to find she is ill. This is the basic outline of countless movies, most popularly "Love Story" in 1970. The leads are both good at making their characters likable, funny and touching. However, it doesn't add anything new, beyond the comic situations involving Gyllenhaal's salesman and his new product: Viagra.
Tim Burton always knows how to create colorful, interesting universes to populate his characters, and this is no exception. However, this time he delivers less than a masterpiece. The characters are zany but many without purpose, and the continuation concept is clever but unnecessary. In this case, it may have been preferable for Burton to just re-adapt the book.
The director of "Eat Drink Man Woman" (1994), "Sense and Sensibility" (1995) and "The Ice Storm" (1997) has delivered a moving - even heartbreaking- tale of love that cannot be fulfilled. The performances are uniformly solid, with particularly worthy turns by Ledger and Gyllenhaal.
Let's get this out right away: the animation in this movie sucks. It looks like animatics for a Pixar movie, or perhaps a video game. (In fact, at the way video games are evolving, most look better than this four-year-old movie.) Fortunately, the look of the movie is not the ONLY thing required for it to work. The story of "Hoodwinked" is mildly entertaining (and definitely owes more than a little to "Shrek", turning a popular fairy tale on its head). And the great voice cast gives a personality to the characters that the animation just can't match. Under the Pixar banner (or even DreamWorks), this could possibly have been a masterpiece. As it is, it's hard to look at, but still kind of fun. Two bones.