When the evil queen Ravenna (Charlize Theron) takes control of the kingdom, Snow White (Kristen Stewart) escapes from captivity and with the help of The Huntsman (Chris Hemsworth) attempts to unite the land.
Snow White and the Huntsman is not a good movie. Hell, it is a pretty miserable fairy tale film that I found no joy in watching, despite the stellar cast. While it is a pretty standard re-telling of the classic Brothers Grimm tale, certain elements just don’t hold up. I found that I didn’t like this film at all, and this saddens me. I really wanted this to be good.
After the death of her mother, Snow White’s father is seduced by the sorceress Ravenna. On their wedding night, Ravenna murders Snow White’s father and steals the kingdom, locking Snow in the north tower for years. When she escapes into the Dark Forest, the Queen hires a Huntsman to track her down and return her so that she can steal the beating heart of ‘the fairest in the land’ to retain her eternal youth and beauty. The Huntsman is betrayed, and joins Snow and the two attempt to get to the Duke, who is the only bastion of revolution against the evil Queen.
Early in the film there is a scene that ruined the whole affair for me. After a great opening setup, we visit the come of age Snow White in her cell in the north tower. There, she is playing with homemade dolls of her father and mother. She then begins the lords prayer. This prayer completely ruined the movie. They set up that this is a fantasy film, complete with a phantom army and a sorceress. They set up that this film is not grounded in reality. Then they throw in a decidedly realistic and reality based prayer. It didn’t mesh with the film, and completely confused me with what they were trying to accomplish. If it were a fantasy sort of religion, I would have applauded the decision to give it some depth. Instead by grounding it in reality, they took the easy way out and made the whole thing feel shallow. I mean, come on. Where are the trolls in this world? Where are the fairies? They are in this movie but not in the world I live in. The lords prayer is in this world I live in. It does not belong in a fantasy film that is decidedly unrealistic.
The other big problem I had with the film was the casting of Kristen Stewart herself. I know she can act. I have seen it! In the film ‘The Runaways’, she plays Joan Jett and has her down to a T. what is saw in this film was Kristen Stewart playing Bella Swan playing Snow White. She spends a majority of the film looking confused and doe eyed at everything that is happening. I could never grasp why anyone would follow her to help her retake her kingdom. She is seriously lacking in charisma in this film, and it really doesn’t help you connect or care for the character.
While Chris Hemsworth did a decent enough job as The Huntsman, he is not given a lot to work with. The same can be said for Charlize Theron as Ravenna. She spends her time yelling and screaming at her brother. If she wasn’t such a good actress, it would have been laughable. Somehow, she manages to sell it through her eyes. You can see the desperation, the fear of losing her youth.
I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the seven Dwarfs. With some of the greatest British actors around, they add a levity to the sour story and have the best scenes in the film. Ian McShane, Bob Hoskins, Ray Winstone, Nick Frost, Eddie Marsan, and Toby Jones play the Dwarfs and are simply brilliant.
The action scenes come straight from the school of Michael Bay film-making. Quick cuts and shaky cam keep you from getting a good look at what is actually going on in the fights, and also attempts to make you nauseous by the swirling, darting inability to keep the camera focused on one thing at a time. I seriously dislike this style of filming. People put a lot of hard work into making the fights the best they can be, then they shake the camera and you cannot see all the work put in. It’s disappointing to me as a film goer, and has to be upsetting to the people who worked on the film who can’t see their hard work on screen.
I just saw this film yesterday and am already having a hard time remembering what happened and in what order. This the a Chinese food movie. It’s okay while you are watching it, but an hour afterwards you forget what you have seen. This is the worst type of movie. Forgettable. There is nothing here that is actually worth remembering. While the actors give the material a good go, the script just wasn’t there. It’s passable for a Saturday matinee, as long as you have absolutely nothing else to do. And by that I mean washing dishes would be more entertaining and memorable.
** out of ****
- ‘Snow White and the Huntsman’ Review (screenrant.com)