Snow White and the Huntsman
Starring: Kristen Stewart, Chris Hemsworth, Charlize Theron, Ian McShane, Bob Hoskins, Ray Winstone, Nick Frost, Sam Claflin, Sam Spruell, Eddie Marsan, Toby Jones,
Directed By: Rupert Sanders
Rating: 6.5 out of 10
The kingdom is in turmoil as the evil queen Ravenna is slowly sucking the beauty out of the world. Only Snow White can stop this curse.
Fairy tales are a staple for many kids growing up. What we have been spoon fed though tend to be the Disney watered down version of the original story. Fairy tales, at least the real fairy tales tend to be a lot more sinister. Original themes of incest, cannibalism, statutory rape, and other such pleasant topics have been replaced with more socially acceptable topics that we are more familiar with. Not to say this movie is pushing any of societies buttons with its story, but It does take an enjoyable darker path that is the rage with in the movie making industry of today (See Batman and Spiderman). Snow White and the Huntsman is the story of a kingdom in peril. It is under the sway of an evil queen and her magical powers. It is up to Snow White to rally the populace to try and bring down this evil tyrant and her reign of terror.
This is the film that guys wanted to see but couldn’t really come out and say it in case their friends hadn’t seen the trailer yet. This film will ultimately start a new trend of darker styled fairy tale movies to come out. While I prefer watching the genius which is Pan’s Labyrinth there is no doubt that this is a cool retelling of Snow White. The film starts and instantly you will be impressed by its beautiful visuals and sweeping landscapes. Fusing an epic styled film with the fairy tale theme is a work of art and should make this film appealing to most. While the film does seem long (it is long at 127 minutes) and at points drawn out it can be forgiven as this is told almost as an origin story. The film has large scaled battles but also the story of Snow White deftly sewn into it. While at times there are things that seem out of place (A giant troll for instance or a giant white stag) at least it is within the realm of reason for a film like this. The film has a good story to action mix as Snow White is pursued through the countryside by the evil henchmen of the wicked queen Ravenna.
Magic mirror on the wall, who is the fairest of them all? Um, in this film clearly it is Ravenna played by Charlize Theron. I am not sure what they were trying to do with the Snow White casting angle here? Snow White (or Blows at Night. I had to make one obvious cheating reference) played by Kristen Stewart was okay as the lead character. Her pouty facial features carry over from the Twilight series though and it gets tiring to watch. She was barely able to lead the movie in the right direction and although pretty she doesn’t have that Snow White look about her. The evil queen Ravenna played by Charlize Theron just brings out all the flaws in Stewarts performance. Theron is beautiful but cruel. She can be soft but then instantly vicious. She does a great job in this role and really captured the evil menace of the character. I guess with Stewart they were trying to go for a beauty is in the eye of the beholder type deal but it was a miss. For every ounce of stark evil beauty Ravenna gives off should have been counter balanced by an ounce of pure goodness beauty in Snow White. It wasn’t so the film lost some of it power with that casting decision of Stewart as White.
Chris Hemsworth played the Hunstman. He is tracker and guide in this film and I believe he could be Hollywood’s next big action star (Thor). He is charismatic and swings a big axe in this film. He was great and really is a character you want to follow in this film. The rest of the cast is solidly put together and have the Medieval look down which was great. The 7 dwarves will blow you away though in their design. What Peter Jackson began with the Hobbits (Shrinking down taller actors) has been perfected in this film. The dwarves are all known British actors (Ray Winstone, Bob Hoskins, and others) and truly it is shocking how they appear on screen. If you were not to know any better you would think they were dwarves in real life. They were awesome and although they may not whistle why they work they can use weapons to kill and maim which is also acceptable.
So as the movie progresses I found myself waiting for the moments where either the Hunstman or Ravenna would end up on screen. Snow Whites struggles to find out her meaning in the world and rally the good troops lost my interest early on. The action is great and like all PG-13 rated films just needed that extra ounce of graphicness to make them really pop. When men and woman are being hit by axe, arrow, and sword more realism goes a long way. As the film heads to its very obvious conclusion (Unless you have never heard of the Snow White story before) it still plays out in an entertaining fashion. This film surprised me with its cool characters and fantastic camera work and visuals. Brave the longer story and you will come out with a satisfying watch.
Virtually unknown Director Rupert Sanders was an odd choice for this film but he pulled it off. The films budget (170 million est.) didn’t hurt his cause. The film is visually stunning with the woods and castles as standouts. The action while not realistic enough still has enough high impact scenes to make it viable. The addition of too many fairy tale creatures and lagging storyline was offset by interesting characters and well acted scenes. It was a solid creation put forth by Sanders.
I give this movie a recommendation as ultimately it is a fresh take on a old story and the action is worth the watch.
T Factor + If you like Kristen Stewarts acting than this could score higher on the rating scale.
T Factor - If you do not like longer movies this could score lower on the rating scale.
If you liked this film reel recommendations: King Arthur, Pans Labyrinth.