There  are a few ways of viewing this movie so let’s start with one that might not be obvious. There is a teenage girl fighting for her life in the woods. There is a town so poor they have nothing. There are people with outrageous hair styles, costumes and make up. “The Hunger Games”? No, but I have a feeling the biggest competition will be between those who did the costumes, hairstyles and makeup for that movie and this one which is “Mirror, Mirror”. Continuing with the similarities we have the 99% poor and the 1% rich in both with the latter living in splendor, having everything at their fingertips.

Now let’s get to the major differences such as this is a family film and I have no idea why it was given a PG rating. There are no crude, rude words and not a fart joke to be found. Sex? Only if you think a guy showing a bare chest here, there and everywhere–and Armie Hammer does a fine job showing his  in an innocent way and usually for a laugh.

Most important this film has Julia Roberts playing the wicked, stepmother queen in fine form, physical and otherwise. She delivers her lines in a wry style and lands many of them for giggles, smiles and, once in awhile, out loud laughter. She uses her many comic skills but stays just on this side of going over the top. There is no way you can mention her in this film without mentioning the way over the top fabulous gowns that she wears though out the film. You could hear the pre-teen girls in the audience sigh out loud with every one of her dress changes. There certainly will be a comparison between Roberts and Charlize Theron, both of whom I love, who plays the evil queen in the next rendition of the Snow White story not to forget Lara Parrilla who plays the evil stepmother in the TV show “Once Upon A Time”. And none have had the spa treatment that Julia Roberts goes through and might have you saying “Ugh!”

Yes Snow White is having a big comeback with 2 films coming out within 3 months and her TV show. In the TV show she is played by Ginnifer Goodwin a bit older than most Snow Whites while in the next movie Kristen Stewart is dressed in armor and ready for battle. In “Mirror, Mirror” though Lily Collins gives it a good try she swings between Audrey Hepburn without the awe she brought to roles and without the fierceness of Jennifer Lawrence. Sadly there is no chemistry between her and the Prince, played by Armie Hammer bringing a lot of humor to the film not to mention always losing his clothes. Talking about humor Nathan Lane holds back his usual frantic style and comes across funnier than in other movies as the accountant to the queen

What would any Snow White film be without the seven dwarfs? They are here but they don’t whistle while they work, with the work being bandits holding up carriages, and each shows a definite personality but it isn’t sneezing, sleeping, dopey, etc., more like Half-Pint, played by Mark Povinelli,  who falls in love with Snow and Napoleon (Jordan Prentice) who, guess what?, has a Napoleon complex! There is Butcher (Martin Klebba), Grub (Joe Gnoffo), Grimm (Danny Woodburn), Wolf (Sebastian Saraceno) and Chuckles (Ronald Lee Clark) all a very merry band.

After all the above I have to say that the parts are better than the whole. The director, Tarsem Singh, seems to have seen too many Tim Burton movies and when he uses his own style, such as in the puppet segment, the movie just stops. He also loses control of some scenes while not adding the pazzazz needed in others.

I must add that it has been many years since I have been in a movie with so many young kids in the audience–it was a Teacher’s Day plus some schools are on Spring Break–and, being honest I was fearful as they were very loud and all seem to be using a cell phone before the movie started but as soon as that happened all cell phones were put away and they were very attentive during the movie. I wish I could say the same about the adults!!!

As a last thought I wonder how many brides will want a copy of the wedding dress Julia Roberts wears for their wedding!


Posted March 31, 2012 by greatmartin in Uncategorized

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