In the Disney version of Snow White, the title princess is a bit, well, boring. Or is tame a better
word? This summer’s Snow White and the Huntsman throws all of that sweetness out the door and exchanges it for a fierce, feministic tale.
Snow White and the Huntsman is as grim as the brothers’ tales themselves. The story is the same,
young girl’s mother dies and father is taken in by beauty of a mysterious woman.
The twist is that Charlize Theron plays one of the most evil queens possibly ever to grace cinematic history. Sadly, Ravenna has a tragic past, and a few good points too, about how men in that time used women and disposed of them without a second thought. The problem? Ravenna and her creepy, equally evil brother have one too many screws missing.
Theron takes her role seriously, too seriously perhaps, as she channels Ravenna’s pain through her tortured stare and her rage as well. Theron is an exceptional actress, and this film no doubt belongs to her and Kristen Stewart (who plays Snow White), but it seems as though she is in a different movie as her performance is over-the-top.
Stewart is one of the most underestimated actresses of her era but she is given little to do in terms of dialogue. The saving grace to the unevenness in performances and film itself is Chris Hemsworth, otherwise known as the Huntsman. Hemsworth brings a necessary humanity and warmth that is otherwise lacking as both the lead actresses are a bit cold.
The special effects in Snow White and the Huntsman are excellent, as are the costumes. Theron
is stunning in articles like elaborate headpieces and even a long, black, feathered “crow” coat. These two aspects of the movie are worth seeing even though the film itself is far from perfect.
There are two last notes that are worth mentioning about the movie. First, the prince (or William,
the Duke’s son here) would have been better left out as he does not even garner a part of the movie poster. Rightfully so it turns out, as his role and consequence to the storyline are severely
limited. The love triangle in this way is lopsided. Second, the battle scenes could have lasted longer especially towards the end of the film (for example, galloping down a beach does not a fine battle make).
Overall, Snow White and the Huntsman takes on far more than many summer blockbusters as it shows the remnants of a war-torn land and gives us a fierce look at how strong princesses and queens can be. Sequel anyone (as it looks like there may be one)?