Saturday, June 2, 2012

Snow White and the Huntsman [2012]

Director: Rupert Sanders
Starring: Kristen Stewart's Cardboard Cutout, Chris Hemsworth, Charlize Theron, Sam Spruell, Sam Claflin, Bob Hoskins, Vincent Regan
Genre: Fantasy/Action
Rating: Teen
Excerpt: "The production team created a beautiful fantasy world for us to escape to, if only Kristen Stewart knew how to react to it..."

Synopsis
When the kingdom comes under attack from an army of enchanted glass soldiers, King Magnus (Noah Huntley) leads an army to meet it, easily winning the battle, rescuing the gorgeous Ravenna (Charlize Theron) in the process. Taken by her beauty, he makes her his queen, filling the void left by his late wife. But things quickly take a turn for the worst as Ravenna is not what she appears. After assassinating the king, she seizes the throne, and uses her new found authority to quench her insatiable thirst to be "the fairest of them all".

Make no mistake, the real star was Ravenna (Charlize Theron)...
What to Expect
1. Charlize Theron to be absolutely captivating
2. Lush settings
3. Beautiful set pieces and costumes
4. Kristen Stewart's cardboard cutout for the non-action scenes
5. Can't help but "play director" (I'll explain)

What NOT to Expect
1. Elaborate battle scenes
2. Absence of fairy tale elements
If you have nothing to do, not even a wife or a husband
Review
Just in case you're wondering, indeed that synopsis is incomplete. I had these written for the last two sentences; "Ravenna soon finds out that there's another who will blossom into the most beautiful woman in the kingdom, and she is destined to take her place as ruler. Her name is Snow White". Nothing wrong there. After all, that's how the original story went.

But then somebody had this bright idea of casting Kristen Stewart for the lead role, so I couldn't bring myself to finalise it that way because, well... How on earth is Kristen Stewart considered "fairer" than Charlize Theron?! I'm not saying she's hideous or anything, I'm sure there's at least one person in the world who has fantasies about her. But c'mon. It's Charlize Theron! So right off the bat, I already had problems with maintaining my suspension of disbelief.

Then the film started to roll, which led to problem number two.

She must have won the role solely for her ability to play dead with her eyes wide open...
Now, acting is not as easy as how some people make it look. I am very well aware of that fact. Which is why I gave her a chance, people. I wanted to be optimistic about it. But most of all, I thought the Twilight movies were so shitty it made her look bad by extension. Then Snow White and the Huntsman came along and shot that theory out of the water. I really don't think it's wise to cast her in a starring role anymore.

Unless you allocate some budget for the CGI department to give her some expressions.

If you think I'm exaggerating, wait till you see her come face-to-face with a monster. There's a really good chance you can't help but play director for a bit. I know I did. In my mind I kept going, "There's a monster six inches away from your face! C'mon, give us something. Try doing Algebra in your head... or imagine old people making out. Something!"

"No, not like that!"
"See what he's doing? It's called reacting. No? For God's sake you're looking right at his face!"
Okay, enough about her. I must stress that it wasn't totally a horrible experience. Amidst my incessant ramblings, I did take time to appreciate the world presented to the audience. The movie didn't forget its fairy tale roots, and tried its best to incorporate it into this darker take on the source material without anything sticking out like a sore thumb. Certain things did, like a majestic-looking horse appearing out of nowhere only to be written out of the story one chase scene later.

But I don't want to nitpick.

Perhaps more worthy of note was the direction that they took. Obviously Snow White and the Huntsman borrowed heavily from other successful fantasy films of similar tone and feel. While it's not my place to question their artistic direction, I find it odd that the lovey-dovey element to the lore felt like it was shoehorned in there. You see, I've always thought that Snow White is a story about love caught in a whirlwind of vanity and jealousy.


So they toned down the theme of love in favour of revenge and standing up for oneself. That's fine. It became a problem only when the time came for Snow White's love interest to express his feelings towards her, but it simply came off as unconvincing. Not the actor's fault, no doubt. It's just that, by that time, chances are you'd have already forgotten that there is a love story lodged in there.

That's the general problem I had with the movie, how the audience is expected to just accept too many things without much help on the movie's part. But you know what? I have this nagging feeling that the underlying problem is a lead actress devoid of any passion whatsoever. I'm just thankful that she didn't talk like this for her big speech prior to going into battle, even though it was still pretty cringe-worthy. At the end of the movie, I wasn't even sure if Snow White even wanted to be queen. She certainly didn't seem happy.

Oh, wait... It's Kristen Stewart.


Right.

2 comments:

PERANGFILEM said...

PF dah tonton. Lagi dramatik SW&TH kot dari Mirror-mirror yang ada element humor :)

Dan O. said...

I enjoyed this one, but I will admit it has it’s problems here and there. I mean really, who would choose K-Stew over Char Ther?!? Think about it.... Nothing too terrible though. Good review Mamu.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Share This!