Little Erin Merryweather

Year of Release: 2003
Genre: Horror / Thriller
IMDB Rating: 5 / 10
Level of Awful: Surprise! – Low


I’ve had a very long internal debate with myself about how to rate this movie. It has a lot going for it: there are some genuinely frightening moments, it has a fair amount of suspense, Vigdis Anholt is brilliant in the title lead and the reworking of the Little Red Riding Hood folktale is fantastic. What brings this movie down is the way the storyline unfolds: it’s not the kind of movie where you don’t know who he killer is and you know why she’s doing it (or at least what the trigger behind it is) so a lot of the focus is placed on Peter, Teddy and Sean, three guys who write for the college paper, and their lecturer Paula Sheffield who tries to help them draw up a psychological profile of the killer on campus. It works, but it seems a little forced and if it didn’t take up so much of the movie it wouldn’t be a problem. That being said this is the only bad thing I can say about this movie and in the end I did enjoy watching Little Erin Merryweather stalking campus in her spectacularly red cape 🙂

A flash of red, and then you're dead...

A small New England college campus is being stalked by a killer: a killer in awesome boots and red cloak with the tendency to disembowel her victims. The first murder takes place in the forest adjacent to the college and leaves the teachers saddened and the police baffled. Peter and his friends Teddy and Sean, however, smell a story that would be perfect for the little university newspaper and Peter desperately tries to convince Teddy and Sean to help him out. His friends don’t seem overly keen in interfering with a police investigation but Peter, undeterred, decides to follow the policeman in charge around in hopes of finding out some more information. As luck would have it one of Peter’s lecturers, Dr Paula Sheffield, once worked with the FBI or police or some similar organisation and is qualified to help make psychological profiles of murderers. By following them around Peter learns that not only was the other student murdered but also disemboweled and his stomach filled with rocks.

Little Red wasn't gonna let some wolf get in the way of her delivery business...

It’s here that we are introduced to our killer, seemingly meek and timid Erin Merryweather who, ironically, is taking the same psychology class as Peter. Peter finds Erin very captivating and, since she also works at the library, enjoys spending time gazing at her longingly. Sadly Peter doesn’t know Erin’s back story: as a child Erin was abused by her father while reading Little Red Riding Hood to her and, as an escape from reality, began to mesh her own life with that of Red Riding Hood’s with her father taking the role of the Big Bad Wolf. For those unfamiliar with the more grownup version of the fairytale Red eventually kills the wolf by filling his stomach with rocks so that he can no longer chase after her. Erin now has a trigger that reminds her of her father and when she comes across another man with the same thing her other personality kicks in in all its red-caped glory and goes after the victim in question just as Red went after the wolf.

Little Red Riding Hood developed some anger issues in the years following the incident with the wolf...

When another student is decapitated with hedge clippers and the police can’t figure out who might be behind it (possibly because their only tactic seems to be to scream at people) Peter, his friends and Dr Sheffield decide to take matters into their own hands to try and figure out who’s behind the killings before someone else lands up with a stomach full of stones. Being the clever one Peter figures out the connection between the murders and the Little Red Riding Hood fairytale and passes along the information to Dr Sheffield before going on a coffee date with Erin since he has been forced to get over his shyness when Dr Sheffield gave the two of them the assignment of profiling one another for her class (again with the irony…) Eventually, after both Sean and Teddy land up being killed, Dr Sheffield and Peter separately figure out who the killer is, Peter through profiling and Dr Sheffield through seeing a storybook Erin has drawn for one of her other classes showing the murders she has committed in a manner similar to a fairytale book. Now all that’s left for the two of them to do is survive when Erin comes after them…


  • Thursday is not Friday.
  • Men never wash their hands.
  • You won’t find drug users at a college in a small New England town.
  • According to police you can’t be murdered unless you have a criminal record.
  • People with bad teeth who like to stay up at night might as well be werewolves.
  • If you know who the serial killer is you should never phone the police; rather go catch her yourself.

Little Erin Merryweather Trailer

Posted on February 5, 2011, in Awful Level: Low, Awful Level: Surprise! and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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