After a beloved King vanishes, his ruthless wife seizes control of the kingdom and keeps her beautiful 18-year-old stepdaughter, Snow White, hidden away in the palace. But when the princess attracts the attention of a charming and wealthy visiting prince, the jealous Queen banishes the girl to a nearby forest. Taken in by a band of rebellious but kindhearted dwarfs, Snow White blossoms into a brave young woman determined to save her country from the Queen. With the support of her new friends, she roars into action to reclaim her birthright and win back her Prince in this magical adventure comedy that will capture the hearts and imaginations of audiences the world over. Written by
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After the Queen finds out Snow White is alive she storms to her room wearing the Elizabethan stiff collar. She enters the closet with the collar on but in the next shot of her approaching the mirror from inside the closet it disappears. See more »
MIRROR, MIRROR is one of two major Snow White movies coming out this year. The second one is SNOW WHITE AND THE HUNTSMAN, which premieres in June. From the trailers the two movies look absolutely nothing alike. While I don't have any problems with a fairy tale princess taking levels in sheer awesome being a competent woman, I'm not sure if the grim and grittiness is the best way to do it. Why does a woman have to become grim and gritty to be badass? But this is neither here nor there. I have yet to see SNOW WHITE AND THE HUNTSMAN because of an unfortunate lack of a time machine so I can't compare the two. (If I did have a time machine, I'd be going to see other movies, such as THE HOBBIT in December, among other worthwhile pursuits.)
What I can do is review MIRROR,MIRROR. Directed by Tarsem Singh (who also directed THE CELL) it stars Julia Roberts as the Evil Queen, Lily Collins as Snow White and Armie Hammer as Prince Alcott in a fun and often tongue and cheek romp through the fairy tale.
The movie starts with the basic premise of Snow White's father, the King (played by Sean Bean), marries the Evil Queen and then mysteriously vanishes into the dark woods while trying to find an evil and dark creature threatening his kingdom. Snow White is left with her stepmother who proceeds to lock her up in the castle, forbidden, for her own good, to leave. Snow listens to the Queen but on her eighteenth birthday things start to change from the traditional fairy tale as she meets the prince and decides to take matters into her own hands.
Julia Roberts' queen is a petty and not really malicious evil. She wants the finest things in life and will do whatever she wants to get them even if it bankrupts the kingdom. She wants to be the most beautiful in the land, and if that requires Snow White to die then so be it. She is fun to watch as she tries to get Prince Alcott to marry her.
On the other hand, Lily Collin's Snow White is a bit on the bland side. She has to play the innocent and naive waif who learns to stand on her own two feet, which generally isn't a role with much to do. However, her Snow White actually does things. She doesn't wait for her prince to come to change things. She actively goes out to try and stop the queen herself.
I think the best thing about the movie was Hammer's prince. He manages to keep an awkward straight face to the Queen's flirtations and is a capable warrior. Later on in the movie he seems to be having a great deal of fun with the situations handed to him.
One thing I have to mention is that the costumes especially the Queen's and the sets are utterly gorgeous, a delight to look at. Most of the sets are in shades of white and gray while a lot of the costumes are brilliantly-colored, creating an interesting and delightful contrast to watch as the characters move through the world. They aren't completely realistic, but the story isn't realistic either and so it helps create the fairy tale illusion.
The story is sufficiently different that it keeps you guessing on how it's going to turn out. You know that the Evil Queen will be defeated and Snow White will get the prince, but the how is left up in the air well enough to keep you entertained. It is most definitely not a serious movie, but one that is a nice way to spend a lazy afternoon. It leaves you with a satisfied feeling if a bit bewildered by the sudden Bollywood style dance number during the credits.
This review first appeared in Geek Speak Magazine - www.geekspeakmagazine.com
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