Movie and Film Reviews (MFR) Adventure Snow White & The Huntsman

Snow White & The Huntsman

In the vein of Touchstone Pictures and Paramount’s meteor disaster epics

Armageddon and Deep Impact, both released back in 1998,  Relativity Media and Univer-

sal Studios ensured a sufficient time gap between the formers’ Mirror, Mirror and the lat-

ter’s Snow White and The Huntsman. They also made certain that their respective ver-

sions of the Grimm brothers popular tale, except for basic story line elements, were in

no way similar in visual style. Thank God.

Snow White and the Huntsman is undeniably the shadowy rendition of the two,

and adheres more closely to the Grimms’ original dark vision ; something that Walt Dis-

ney would not have approved of. It fiercely breaks out from conservative family film tra-

dition and strives for epic proportion with a no holds barred attitude. While there is some

melodic singing and cutesy dwarves parties, the old familiar Hi-Ho, Hi-Ho, has been

supplanted by stirring speeches, combat strategy and brutal wars.

The Huntsman himself ,Chris Hemsworth with his deep, unmistakable aussie

voice, commands your attention in the opening narration. Starting with those memorable

and iconic words, “Once upon a time”,  he discloses how the deceitful treachery of an e-

ternally beautiful woman, whose hatred towards men becomes lethally apparent, usurps

the king’s throne, transforms a thriving, prosperous kingdom into a world of such dark-

ness, even nature refuses to flourish, and as icing on the cake, imprisons the deceased

king’s daughter Snow White, in a tower.

When the new queen (Chalize Theron) asks her noble magic mirror who is the

fairest, and the mirror answers that princess Snow will surpass her in beauty, she doesn’t

take the news at all well. However, the mirror advises that if the queen can snatch Snow

White’s heart, she’ll live forever. Naturally, the queen wants this done asap, and after the

first attempt fails, with Snow White escaping into the dark forest, Ravenna turns to the

skills of  a drunken huntsman to find and kill her.

British director Rupert Sanders’ first time behind the cameras of a major film

definitely shows signs of promise. He solidly assures us of his capability to handle big

budget features as well as tv commercials and film shorts. Working from a carefully

crafted, non-cheesy script, Sanders retains the basic integrity of Snow White coupled

with a twist that, as far as I know, has never been done. He was also fortunate to retain

some major star power.

Kristen Stewart trades in her Twilight fangs as the fearfully brave princess, whose

daring escape from Ravenna urges you to cheer her on. Her long stint in the high tower

bolsters her strength and  determination to stay alive, overcoming the high anxiety ra-

cing through her as she vanishes by horseback into a forbidden part of the kingdom.

Stewart’s Snow White is no wimp despite a few instances of timidity.

She is able to conquer her angst ridden heart with help from the one person she

doesn’t expect- the Huntsman tasked to take her heart. Hemsworth embodies the role,

sporting that Thor physique, less the ability to drink vast amounts and not get terribly

drunk. Teaming with a band of eight dwarves possessing personalities that provide much

of the pic’s humor, he becomes an unlikely ally in perking up Snow’s battle chops so she

can take down her heinous stepmother, thus claiming her rightful destiny as monarch.

Charlize Theron is nothing short of  deliciously contemptible as Ravenna. Her every

move, facial tic, gesture and especially the eyes simply belie her good intentions. But

she’s not evil for evil’s sake. There is a personal dynamic that causes her to explode in

fits of rage at Finn, her sycophantic brother, and is explored in depth quite effectively. At

any rate, Theron compels you to understand why Ravenna is the way she is.

Whatever version appeals to you, Snow White and the Huntsman is decidedly the

adult expose’ that shows it’s true colors. The only other iteration that comes close is

1997’s Snow White: A Tale of Terror, featuring Sigourney Weaver in the wicked role.

It’s good for an adaptation to be different for truth’s sake, and this one is indisputably,

true to the Brothers Grimm and is no fairy tale.

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