Mirror Mirror

Mirror Mirror

Written by Melissa Wallack & Jason Keller
Directed by Tarsem Singh

I killed and skinned a Bjork to wear her hide to this gala!

Mirror Mirror is the first theatrical Snow White movie of 2012 to hit theaters. Featuring Julia Roberts as the Evil Queen, and Tarsem Singh’s distinctive visual style of making every frame look like something you’d use as a desktop background, Mirror Mirror is a beautiful film. But beyond the exterior beauty, your enjoyment of Mirror Mirror will depend on how close you are to the target audience, primarily young girls and their mothers. Mirror Mirror is not bad, there is plenty of action and humor for everyone, but I can see that if I was a 7 year old girl, this film would be the awesomeness. Instead, it’s just good, not great. There are problems such as a few slow spots and a lack of suspense due to the Snow White story being so old and used that we all know the day will be saved, the Evil Queen defeated, and Snow will get her Prince Charming. It’s more of the journey, not the destination, that is important in these cases. While parts of the classic Snow White tale are used, some parts are glossed over, while other pieces are added after being weaved from thin air.

The next guy who calls one of us “Dopey” gets his knees cut off!

Differences abound immediately from the other Snow White, for instead of a Lord of the Rings inspired fantasy, Mirror Mirror is a live action cartoon. The only thing missing was talking animals! Between Tarsem Singh’s imagery and Eiko Ishioka’s costumes, the fantasy world of the fairy tale is alive and well on your movie screens.

Steve Jobs, you bastard!

The scenery is beautiful, from the CGI spectacle that is the castle sitting over the frozen lake to the snow-covered forest where danger may lurk behind every tree. The costumes are amazing, and I could spend thousands of words describing them all. But you really must see them to appreciate them. The opening sequence done in a puppet-style is marvelous, much appreciated compared to all the flat Flash opening sequences I’ve seen in films lately.

And once again, TarsTarkas.NET has sold out and went to an advanced screening for free!

Snow White and the Full Monty

Snow White (Lily Collins) – Snow White is the daughter of the King, who rules over a happy Kingdom. But he is lost when fighting a frightful Beast, and the Kingdom falls into the hands of his new wife, the Evil Queen. Snow is trapped in her room, never to leave the castle. Until one day she decides to… Daughter of Phil Collins, Lily Collins originally auditioned for the role of Snow White in Snow White and the Huntsman, which ended up casting Kristen Stewart.
The Queen (Julia Roberts) – The vainest woman in the world, The Queen runs through the Kingdom’s treasury like a hot knife through butter, driving the Kingdom to ruin and keeping it locked in a permanent winter. Her latest scheme is to marry yet another handsome prince to refill her bank account. And wouldn’t you know it, a handsome prince just happens to wander into the Kingdom…
Prince Alcott (Armie Hammer) – The handsome Prince who is in search of adventure, and he finds one in a Kingdom ruled by an evil Queen and the King’s rightful heir leading a rebellion consisting of dwarves. Also the Queen wants to marry him, even victimizing him with love potions. Armie Hammer plays the Prince so straight-laced and heroic that’s it’s amazing. You can almost see Cinderella and Belle fighting over him just off screen… Also Armie Hammer sounds like Arm & Hammer, so let’s put Armie Hammer in our fridge to see if he stops odors…
Brighton (Nathan Lane) – The Queen’s loyal servant, who was the loyal servant to the King before her. He doesn’t really like what he does, but doesn’t dislike it enough to do much of anything about it. His character is both literally and figuratively a cockroach, though he isn’t entirely evil.
Let’s kick that other Snow White movie’s butt!

I’d laugh if I didn’t think these machines actually existed
Snow White, the girl who wasn’t on fire

The best parts by far involve the dwarves. The talented group is packed with actors you’ll recognize if you spend even the slightest time watching media. I knew five of them by sight just from the promotional photo! Their chemistry is remarkable, and they bring so much to their roles they have to shove dialogue in the background as they enter/exit. Their rough and tumble demeaner gives a life to the film that the stuffy castle scenes or the Dickensian poverty townspeople lack. Like the Disney dwarves, they all get a name and a gimmick, but they take pains to make the dwarves larger than life…:cough cough: In case you’re wondering, their names are Grimm, Napoleon, Half Pint, Grub, Wolf, Butcher, and Chuckles. The dwarves are bandit outlaws that were banished by the Queen long ago (as were all other ugly people as “undesirables”! I guess the Queen is getting advice from the Garbage Pail Kids movie!) Now the dwarves act as mentors for Snow White, training her to become a rebel to fight and take back her kingdom.

It’s a good thing Tarsem Singh has such delicious-looking scenery, because Julia Roberts is chewing it up like a mo-fo! She oozes evil, in a delightfully cheery way. The Evil Queen can’t be bothered with all the details, she’s too busy running through husbands and their bank accounts. It’s also cool seeing Julia Roberts in a role involving aging and beauty. America’s Pretty Woman has to deal with the march of time. But Julia Roberts has been largely doing awesome roles for the past decade, because she can do whatever the heck she wants, as she’s Julia Roberts. Her Queen is obsessed with beauty and despite the beautiful exterior, the insides are ugly and broken.

This entire film is in Snow White’s head, the seven dwarves her seven repressed personalities. The Evil Queen is her true form. Directed by David Lynch.
No one knows I’m secretly Ariel!
Little Red Riding Hood’s sister Little Gold Riding Hood was also the Jack the Ripper of Fairy Tale Land!

The magic mirror is less of a guy in the mirror than a portal to the reflection of the Queen’s soul, complete with her own copy inside. A copy capable of magical things, thus leading to drama near the end of the second act. The attack of puppet people is both unexpected and a good action sequence, with the creepy puppets smashing things while the creepy Julia Roberts double also giving things a surreal edge.

Now that Snow White is preparing to take on her step-mother, things begin to fall into place as she must save the Prince from getting married and defeat the Queen’s Beast, all while staying alive. While Snow White does do more than the typical Disney princess, she still has her friends and Prince to help her. It’s like watered-down girl power. And while I guess that is an improvement, we still got a ways to go. But I do hope there is a sequel, focused on the dwarves, because they are all 100% awesome. Without Tarsem Singh making this film a visual masterpiece, it wouldn’t have a chance. Instead, it becomes a feast for the eyes, though your brain will still be hungry for seconds.

I’ve changed my name to Snow Blue!
In the rush to get the remakes out quickly, the Terror of Tiny Town and Lone Rangers scripts got scrambled together…
Forget the Queen, I’m going to be the next Dread Pirate Roberts!

Is it a sign of Hollywood has lost its way with multiple Snow White and other fairy tale adaptations hitting the theaters; while reboots, remakes, and reimaginings haunt the halls; while every tentpole film is numbers 3-6 of a series…or is it just business as usual? Those who don’t remember the past are doomed to repeat it, and while things seem dark in the land of Hollywood, there has always been remakes and countless sequels. We’re just at a point when the stakes are higher in the pursuit of billion dollar gains. This too shall fall apart, because trains were meant to be derailed.

Soon we shall see which Snow White film is the fairest of them all….:cough cough: I don’t want to give you a snow job :cough cough: and say that this film snow blows…:cough cough: It’s still pretty fair, but not the apple of my eye! :cough cough:

When Twilight fandom goes too far…

Rated 5/10 (Rabbit Season!, Love Potion Number 8, Looks Like Dr. Seuss is designing outfits again!, And more outfits, And they call it Puppy love…)

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One thought on “Mirror Mirror

  1. Pingback: Mirror, Mirror | Mysterious Order of the Skeleton Suit

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