Sunday, June 10, 2012

Snow White And The Huntsman

Year: 2012
Director: Rupert Sanders
Cast: Kristen Stewart, Charlize Theron, Chris Hemsworth, Sam Claflin, Sam Spruell, Vincent Regan

Plot: The second of two adaptations of the Snow White fairytale. No comedy, no Bollywood dancing. They're all business here.

Review: From the trailers, this Snow White film looks very much inspired from Lord Of The Rings, and indeed it is. We have magic, sorcery, knights in armor and battles galore, complete with a castle siege. It's nowhere near the level of Peter Jackson's epic, but it's okay because it doesn't need to be.

Rupert Sanders, a relatively new director, does quite well on his major feature film effort. Many directors wouldn't have went through the amount of detail Sanders had in making this film. The film runs slightly over 2 hours, which allows Sanders to explore his main characters thoroughly and not simply presenting them to the audience half expecting them to already know them from the books. As a result, the audience gets to respect and understand them, even though some may say it's not imperative to the plot.

Visually, Snow White is impressive as well. The evil Queen's sorcery, made up of youth sapping spells, armies of crows and the magic mirror all look awesome. The Queen's final confrontation with Snow White in particular uses a lot of visual effects and certainly succeeds in making this tale stand out.

Kristen Stewart has been given the honorable task of playing Snow White, and there are still so many out there who give her flak for it. To be fair, Stewart makes the most of her role as best she can, and manages to be convincing enough as the feisty Snow White. She's still a long way from an Oscar, but I'm happy to see her in this role. Chris Hemsworth, looking like he just came off the set of The Avengers, is also great as the huntsman, who is pictured here as a broken drunk looking for a reason to live, and finds it in the girl he'd been hired to hunt down. Strangely enough, it's Charlize Theron that slightly disappoints as the Queen. She chooses to ham up her performance to a level we would call overacting, as she barks and screams and wails half the time, abandoning nearly all of her subtlety.

Sam Claflin of Pirates Of the Caribbean 4 gets the role of William aka Prince Charming, but doesn't get a lot to do. And then there are the dwarves, eight instead of seven, played by the who's who of British film (Ian McShane, Bob Hoskins, Nick Frost, Toby Jones, Ray Winstone, Eddie Marsan among others), that add a bit of humor sorely needed in the film. But like Claflin, they don't get as much screentime as we'd like.

Overall, Snow White And The Huntsman is very entertaining but not without its flaws. With some restraint from Theron, more time for the dwarves, more humor and more action sequences from Stewart, this film would be perfect. But I still love it anyway. (4/5)

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