Thursday, May 31, 2012

3 Short Paragraphs: Snow White & the Huntsman

2012, Rupert Sanders -- cinema

In the year of the faerie tale re-imagined including TV shows Once Upon a Time and Grimm and the other terrible Snow White movie, Mirror Mirror, but lacking any property made from the comic Fables, I was disappointed that nothing lent itself to the D&D player in me.  Until I saw the trailers for this movie.  Dual axe-wielding, leather armored Chris Hemsworth (who, in all honesty, will always be Kirk's day to me) cried out to be made into an NPC in my game.  Kristen Stewart was not whatsoever an image of Snow White to me, but in a re-imagining where she wields a sword and fights along side an army, I am cool with that.  And Charlize Theron as the Evil Queen.... be still my heart and command me, my Queen. Snicker.  And double yay when Kent gave me an early pass to see the movie!

So, basically what I got was exactly what I wanted -- a light fantasy fare, light on the faerie tale connection and strong on the  generic fantasy.  Queen Ravenna is a wandering beauty who bewitches Kings and steals their kingdoms and the life of the kingdom & its women. She is hundreds if not thousands of years old and sucks the life from maidens for her youth & beauty and magical power.  But when she takes Snow White's kingdom, she kind of takes a liking to young Snow and rather than killing her, locks her in a tower until her early 20s.  When Snow escapes and a prophecy proves to the Queen that the girl should have been dead long ago, she sends the drunken, mead-swilling Huntsman after the girl.  Prophecy becomes destiny and it is up to Snow White and the rebel heroes of the kingdom to defeat Ravenna and take back her father's throne.

This is brilliant generic fantasy, and by generic I mean that it is not all that tied to a specific world.  Faerie tales may be set on our earth and often in Germany or France, but this does not tie there at all. There are hints that more connection may have been dropped on the cutting room floor as there were a few disconcerting and completely unneeded references to Christianity in the movie.  The rest is dark fantasy with haunted forests, faerie glades and magnificent gothic castles !!  Kristen Stewart may not be the best Snow White in history (yes to pale skin but no red lips and limp, brown hair) but she does look rather fetching in armor wielding a sword.   And the 8 no 7 dwarves were brilliant grumpy ex-miners who had recognizable CGIed faces (think Captain America) and voices on real dwarf bodies.  This movie looked great, sounded great and I could watch Charlize have psychotic rages all day long.  Heh.