- Story Ideas
- Send Corrections
Rupert Sanders may have only made commercials before directing the hundred-million-dollar action epic Snow White and the Huntsman, but he’s definitely been heavily influenced by the cinema as of late more than anything on television.
This Snow White saga has hints of Lord of the Rings, Ridley Scott’s Robin Hood and almost anything directed by Mel Gibson. None of these are bad muses mind you; they just make for a different type fairy tale. But at times Snow White and the Huntsman strives to be too different.
Problems do arise from the onset—some are the conflict, others are conflicting critically—as Chris Hemsworth sets the stage via voiceover before even being introduced to use as a character.
He tells us the whole back story complete with everything from the naming of Snow White to the rise of the evil queen, in this tale known as Ravenna (played with more than enough heft by Charlize Theron). The tale is basic enough: Snow White inherently good and Ravenna evil beyond your wildest of imagination. And wait until you see the Mirror, or how she sucks the life out of younger women to keep her youthful physique.
Snow White and the Huntsman doesn’t shy away from any brand of mysticism—even when you wish it would—or it should, just to keep logic alive somewhat. Ravenna’s powers test our own limits, but they only create an antagonist of pure villainy. Plus, she has her brother Finn (Sam Spruell excels at this oddity of person) to send out into the world while she’s hulled up in the castle. They’re siblings of a demonic nature putting it mildly.
The Huntsman (Hemsworth) comes into play when Snow White (Kristen Stewart does her best to make this as believable as humanly possible) escapes the North Tower in which the devilish Ravenna has her imprisoned, and little Miss White runs off into the Dark Forest (don’t ask, for it’s just plain weird), where most people ne’er return, yet the Huntsman been there and back. So his job told to him by his Queen becomes to retrieve Snow White from said locale.
Writers Evan Daugherty, John Lee Hancock and Hossein Amini do make a mess of things quick, yet this does fade when the trio strikes a solid chord: Like the dwarves (marvelous done, thanks to CGI, by Ian McShane, Bob Hoskins, Ray Winstone and Nick Frost only to name a few).
It’s pretty simple, after a sloppy, at times laughable, exposition is poured. Snow White and the Huntsman turns from fairy tale into a revolution, slash returning of the rightful heir to the throne. Some of the people are still loyal to Snow White’s parents, the usurped King and Queen at its simplest, so with the help of the Huntsman—part bounty hunter turner body guard, part inadequately defined partner to Miss White—the good guys that are left aim at restoring everything to its proper order.
Director Sanders hits the right notes on the action, but the dialogue occasionally makes you beg for anything but speech from these characters. To be fair, however, the Huntsman does have an impressive monologue towards the end of the film delivered with infinite sorrow by Hemsworth.
And if any film wants to add spice to the bland just grab James Newton Howard for your score and throw in some Florence and the Machine over your closing credits, and even the most utterly confused or thoroughly frustrated with your approach will leave the movie theater with a smile.
Snow White and the Huntsman may be far from perfect, but being pop-corn fodder, and a directorial debut to boot, the feature film makes good use of two hours you could spend during this fine summer while indoors.