Can it be? Is it true?
Yes. Yes. It is. I found a modern fantasy movie where there are no caricatures… only characters.
In the Black corner: Ravenna played by the beautiful Charlize Theron. Not only is Ravenna brought to life with painstakingly stunning attention to detail from the visual effects team, the writers Evan Daugherty and John Lee Hancock give the Evil Queen a back story that really adds dimension to her character. With a tragic start in life cast in black magic by her mother and ripped from her home by a king to be his wife (and all the abuse implied in that situation), Ravenna is at once vulnerable, cruel and schizophrenic. This is no cackling Disney character. She’s effing insane. And Theron plays her brilliantly.
In the White corner: Snow White played by Kristen Stewart. You either like K-Stew or you don’t. Despite not being a fan of the Twilight movie adaptations, I do like Kristen Stewart as an actress. As Snow White she manages to embody the purity of the character without being insipid. Instead this Snow White has grit, integrity and an abundance of courage. The writers cleverly give Snow White a far bigger destiny than just being the prettiest girl in town, providing plenty of scope for the plot and plenty of thrills and action.
In the Blue corner: The Huntsman played by the swoon-worthy Chris Hemsworth (seriously, could my crush get any bigger????). A bit of a drunk, the Huntsman is living a fairly pathetic life grieving for the wife who disappeared while he was at war. Known for having returned unscathed from the Dark Forest where Snow White has escaped into, Ravenna summons the Huntsman to bring Snow back to her, promising him she’ll return his wife from the dead. The Huntsman catches on fairly quickly, and given a new purpose in life, valiantly (and with the right amount of blunt humour) escorts Snow White to the army that awaits her. And the Scottish accent he adopts is not the worst I’ve heard! Hemsworth is rugged, appealing and perfectly cast as the warrior - his action scenes being some of the best in the movie.
In the Red corner: The seven dwarves played by an ensemble of great British actors including Ian McShane, Ray Winstone and Bob Hoskins. I don’t know how the visual effects team did it, but it was awesome and all played beautifully. The dwarves are given their own back story too. Once law abiding gold miners, the dwarves have been reduced to abduction and thievery since Ravenna ravaged the land. Snow White’s entrance into their lives renews their sense of purpose and their action scenes add a bit of humour to the thrills.
Overall: It's an action-packed adventure with an abundance of magic and great characterization. The visual effects are absolutely beautiful, the world-building both dark and edgy,enchanting and whimsical, reminding me a little of Lord of the Rings.
If you haven’t guessed, I absolutely LOVED Snow White and the Huntsman. It’s the first fantasy film in a while that I found really engaging and enjoyed the characters enough to be invested.
A must-see for fantasy fans. And a must-see for any ladies who want something to drool over for 2 hours (Hemsworth :-p)