Snow White and the Huntsman

Snow White and the Huntsman

Written by Evan Daugherty, John Lee Hancock, and Hossein Amini
Directed by Rupert Sanders

Snow White and the Movie That Was Far Too Epic!

No film has ever wanted to be Lord of the Rings more than Snow White and the Huntsman. And I say this as someone who has seen dozens of the LOTR ripoffs that sprang up like weeds in the direct to DVD market in the wake of the Rings trilogy sweeping the box office. From the exact same aerial shots in increasingly less-majestic lands, to elves and orcs and crap arguing about magic swords, to Dragon and Eragon and Curse of the Ring, to Dungeon Siege and any fantasy film that dared to try to copy shots and themes, we were awash in their wake. And now, years later, just before Peter Jackson brings us two Hobbit movies, Snow White gets her Lord of the Rings treatment. And it is bland.

Now the Queen is trapped in that Star Trek: The Next Generation episode Frame of Mind!

In a year where two Snow White films raced to the box office, Snow White and the Huntsman strayed behind Mirror Mirror in an attempt to cash in on that sweet summer money. And while Mirror Mirror was targeting 8 year old girls, Snow White and the Huntsman is trying to cast a wider net, aiming to get teens and tweens of both genders. With Kristen Stewart and Chris Hemsworth bringing their box office clout, you would think this is a natural mid-range blockbuster. But thanks to the originality and just weird story editing, we’re left with a more vanilla adventure that seems like a script from

What happens when you don’t eat Granny Smith!

Snow White (Kristen Stewart) – The most beautiful person in all the lands, and palace tower jailbird. She escapes to lead the rebellion against the evil Queen, if only she can keep from eating apples. Johnny Appleseed was later indicted in her murder. Kristen Stewart is starting to have a thing in movies where she dies and is brought back to life via magic.
The Huntsman (Chris Hemsworth) – The only person who can hunt down Snow White is Thor, a widower drunk who owes money to dwarfs. So of course that makes him the love interest. I hope you like deciphering accents!
Queen Ravenna (Charlize Theron) – This Queen in the magical witch version of the aliens from Independence Day. Luckily, Snow White is Will Smith/Bill Pullman/Jeff Goldblum, so her days are numbered. I guess that makes The Huntsman Judd Hirsch. There are worse fates.
William (Sam Claflin) – What? Get outta here, Team Legolas! You’re just in the way. At least you keep your shirt on.
50 Shades of Grey was originally WHAT???

The Statue of Liberty overdoses on Vagina Bleaching Cream!

The epic quality of Snow White and the Huntsman begins with the innocent Snow White growing up in the land of peace. But we know the score, her mom dies, her father marries a new woman who turns out to be evil evil evil. King Magnus is soon filling a body bag, while Queen Ravenna’s men ravage the land and hope dies. Snow White is locked in a tower and grows up into Kristen Stewart. But Ravenna’s creepy pseudo-albino brother isn’t allowed to rape her, as Ravenna needs her still innocent for when she becomes an adult and Ravenna can eat her heart, insuring immortality and eternal youth thanks to some weird spell involving drops of blood that is sort of explained.

Snow White escapes and runs into the forest where everyone gets high on mold sports and sees monsters, so they send in The Huntsman (if he ever got a name, they never bothered to say it) who had entered and left the forest once before (for reasons also never explained), but when he finds out Queen Ravenna lied to him, he escapes with Snow White to make their way to the home of the resistance to the Queen in a neighboring Dukedom. In the journey, we get a glimpse of the ruined country, the women who scar themselves so the Queen will not take them and swallow their youth and beauty for her powers (I give credit, I think this was a fabulous thing to include), and the missing men who are all to war at far away lands.

Only a fool fights in a burning house! Oh, wait…
This doesn’t make me a fool because I’m the one on fire, not my house!

On the way they meet the Seven Dwarfs, who, while charming, come off more as variations of Gimli and the Hobbits. They sing ancient songs, talk of their once great culture, and speak with accents so British I couldn’t make out some of their words. Bob Hoskins as the blind soothsayer Muir is the standout dwarf. But the dwarfs don’t even show up until the film is almost half over, so they don’t get much of a chance to make a mark.

Don’t worry, Avatar fans, there is a stop off in Pandora to meet fairies and a deer with branches on its head to anoint Snow White as The Chosen One (and also don’t worry, this then goes nowhere…) A kick Team Edward/Team Jacob event aside (with her childhood friend, Will) and a bite of the apple later, Snow White is dead. Dead! Of course, she’s not really dead, and a few kisses later she’s leading troops into battle. Thanks to all her military training from being locked in a tower for ten years.

I’m like totally a general and stuff!
Kristen Stewart continues to hide from Team Jacob fans in a post-apocalyptic world…
The Magic Mirror is a giant novelty 45!

Charlize Theron is the standout as Ravenna. The first half of the film is a great looks at mental instability and someone with real psychological issues. Unfortunately, they then decide to make her a comic book supervillain and to go movie crazy. This over the top performance distracts from the great subtle and not so subtle things she was doing earlier. I though parts where she was talking to her brother that showed her need for reassurance and self-doubt were great. The part where she was talking to the man in the mirror while her brother just sees her speaking to no one was a great hint that there may have been something bigger and better in the script once. And though her final scene tries to make up for the screaming crazy woman she becomes, the end just becomes less impactful as a result.

As for the Lord of the Rings comparison, let us count the ways: There is a Troll that shows up for no reason except that there were a few trolls in LOTR. The Tree of Gondor is on Snow’s shield for mystery reasons on the poster. Will is basically Legolas. The sweeping overhead shots of the party marching along the mountain tops. When Snow White is resurrected, she’s dressed as Snow The White. Shadowfax the Horse is randomly waiting on a beach for Snow White the second she escapes the castle (this scene makes no sense for an hour, after which we’re to infer that the horse was fairy controlled, but it’s not really explained!) When Snow is being chased by the Queen’s troops, who are dressed in black while riding black horses, I think we’ve seen that imagery before. The Dwarfs look like they were borrowed heavily from The Hobbit. The epic battle sequences (which end up less epic) are shot similarly, though they’re on a beach instead of a field, so it’s totally different, you see! Let’s not ignore the black birds being the tool of the Queen, much like they were to Sauron.

Troll, huh? Unless you’ve posted Goatse as message boards burn, swindled WoW gold and been kicked from servers, TKed whole squads in a single shot, and destroyed the Bitcoin economy, you are no troll.
We’re here for the Super Mario Bros. Sequel!
The deer is played by special guest Michelle Branch!
If only the Brownies from Willow were in this film…

Thanks to the Snow White Arms Race of 2012, it is impossible to discuss this film without comparing it to Mirror Mirror. Okay, it is possible, but we aren’t going to do it. We are going to point out that the Dwarfs were introduced in both films the same way, as bandits in the woods who hang main characters upside down and taunt them. but beyond that, the films have different targets and different stories they want to tell. So instead of directly comparing, we’ll just rate them on what the film set out to do. Snow White and the Huntsman stretched to do much more than Mirror Mirror’s lower scope, but it accomplished less of what it set out to do. And while there are things I liked better than in Mirror Mirror, the fact is that it too often feels like we’ve been on this road before with a better story teller guiding us. So in the end, there is no clear winner. I’ll have to lean towards Mirror Mirror, though I confess I’ll probably be more inclined to watch Snow White and the Huntsman when it shows up on cable than Mirror Mirror.

And let’s talk about the very last scene. Huh? Can anyone explain what was going on? Why she was just standing there? Then the doors just close. It doesn’t even conclude on more narration like the beginning of the flick. It just ends. If she had burst into song like Mirror Mirror I would have laughed. But there is no joy in Snowsville.

Don’t ask me, ask that jerk Darwin to explain this crap!
I have tasted Jack Horner’s pie, and it is good.
It was a sad but inevitable day when Twilight invaded the Hunger Games

Rated 5/10 (Why you shouldn’t make a mirror out chocolate, The Tree of Fondor!, Butterfly orgy in MY Snow White?, These fairies watch you all the time in the shower, Lil’ Snow White)

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Look, mirror, I don’t like your body language!
This shot totally not stolen from Lord of the Rings!

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