Snow White and the Huntsman

Oh I suck it took me a month to get this review out.

My movie experience was a little different this time.  Nu Metro Waterfront held a pre-release screening on Thursday, 31st May. It’s their Ladies Night event, where ladies have a night out, being served by shirtless men and eating glittery cupcakes and having free things thrown at them and entering a raffle for a small army of fantastic goodies. My friend made this awesome discovery and we went together along with her sisters and two of their friends.  My ambition was to be served pretty cupcakes by shirtless men that I could ogle.  Sadly the shirtless men arrived late, and by then I had already eaten a glitter drenched cupcake and received a free box of Jaffa Cakes.  It was easy to see who had eaten cupcakes because suddenly almost everyone had glitter on their lips and cheeks.  It was very cute.

On entering the cinema we were given a magic show followed by the raffle.  I had made jokes about winning a prize, and had a horror filled moment were I might have won 3 six packs of booze, but thankfully it was a slightly different surname to mine.  So I was over hoping to win something when my name was drawn.  Well I was completely shocked, yes I entered and I joked about winning but I didn’t really expect to, especially when someone else who has the same first name as me had already won the booze.  I won a huge packet of fantastic goodies, lots of biscuits, more Jaffa Cakes, and toffees.  Mmmm I like chocolate covered toffees, I did have visions of my filling getting ripped out, but fortunately that didn’t happen.  So, with a packet full of nummie goodies on my lap, I proceeded to watch Snow White and the Huntsman.

It should really be called The Huntsman and Snow White or Thor 2 or Thor was involved in the medieval tale that will give rise to the Snow White fairy tale!  I’m totally in love with Chris Hemsworth, his death at the beginning of JJ Abrams Star Trek movie still makes me cry, and he is fantastic at playing a god. He plays the warrior role well; I foresee a new action star with more acting talent than Sylvester Stallone, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jean-Claude Van Damme, Steven Seagal, Chuck Norris …. basically the entire cast of the Expendables 2, (which I am so excited for) put together. Unfortunately, while Snow White and the Huntsman was a treat to watch, the script had some serious issues.

Firstly may I say that Charlize Theron is a FANTASTIC Evil Queen.  She and Regina, the Evil Queen from Once Upon a Time TV series, are the most evil and fleshed out fairytale Queens I have ever seen.  You could see that Revanna had a warped view of the world due to a trauma in her childhood, and that while her motives for what she does and her hate for Snow White are unfounded, you can see they stem from her own insecurities and neuroses.  That being said she yelled a bit to make her point, which I guess might be to indicate that her moods aren’t entirely stable.  But if you are an all powerful witch queen you wouldn’t need to yell.  If she were as scary as everyone around her is acting, she would have no need.  Her yelling makes her look weak, like she has no control over her subjects.

As I’ve said I love the Huntsman.  So yummy, so…….. unwashed!  He played the semi drunk warrior well.  At one point in the film my friend got the giggles, all she could see when he was fighting was Thor, not the huntsman.  The poor prince, he really didn’t stand a chance with Thor in this film.

Kirsten Stewart.  I really want to be nice about her, but she was really wooden.  Don’t get me wrong, she is good at showing grief and pain, but I don’t think she knows how to convey any other emotions, so all that’s left is this confused constipated look on her face. (very many of my friends have used the word constipated to describe Kirsten Stewart, it’s not just me who see’s it.)  I also think that she wasn’t given much to work with in this film. I think her dialogue is even less than the rest of the cast, like they didn’t want her to talk, they just needed someone to look pretty and sad.  Her accent was very good, I quite enjoyed her sounding different, but the personality wasn’t a big enough change from what we saw in Twilight or in her interviews.

When all’s said and done my biggest gripe with the film is the script.  It’s as though they weren’t entirely sure what kind of narrative they were trying to create.  They’re trying to build up this magical lore around Snow, like she’s holy, but they can’t really decide what, so they call her the ‘One’ in several different ways, imbue her in magic but don’t indicate whether it’s something she can use; she’ll bring balance to the force; her mere presence heals people; which is then followed by a character dying, make up your bloody mind.  Then we get some Lord of the Rings visual references, which I get. They created the iconic travelling over the mountains scenes but one of the earlier horse chase sequences was too similar to Arwen’s horse chase in Fellowship, right down to the camera angles. Then there’s a Narnia reference when they walk into a magical hidden forest. There are several walking over the mountain travel scenes that again look straight out of Lord of the Rings, granted when it comes to fantasy forest travel scenes they will all look a tad similar, the birds eye shot used to give a sense of how big the forest/ world your travelling in.  Truly the only thing that differentiated those travel scenes from the Lord of the Rings scenes was that you could see the terrain was different.  Well I would because I try to watch the trilogy extended edition at least once a year.  Then we get something really interesting, the magical creatures. The fairies are different, and oh so cute. They remind me of something, but I still can’t figure out what just yet.  We get some moss covered tortoises, nice and ancient looking, and then we get a white stag, who can turn into butterflies and has antlers that look like huge tree branches.  It’s a very cool visual, but not one that really fits itself into any western mythology.  I don’t know any stories, myths or fairytales about magical/holy stags with weird antlers.  So the stag was nice and different, not necessary to the story, but I’m pretty sure some people watching it thought, ‘huh it’s the Forest Spirit from Princess Mononoke’.

I think in general there wasn’t enough in this film. It fell short on its characters except for the Huntsman and The Queen.  The rest of the cast wasn’t given enough to work with. Sometime’s all it takes is one perfect line to bring a character across.  Especially the dwarves, they had a group of really good actors, and they could have done a lot more with their characters, but they just weren’t given a chance to shine.  However, I enjoyed the movie, but I seriously can’t see how they can turn this into a franchise.