Following on from our Lights, Camera, Action review and interview with director Rupert Sanders by Jay Rodan, i-D online tell our thoughts on the classic story turned superstar epic that’s got the world talking.
The characters plucked from the fairy tale are still recognizable; Kristen Stewart as Snow White is the dark-haired and gentle beauty of pure heart. Charlize Theron is the Evil Queen, obsessed with her own power and beauty and the Seven Dwarves are out in full force, comic but at the same time fiercely loyal and protective of the beautiful Princess. The tale has expanded and been embellished somewhat to draw in other themes, including a fetid and decaying Kingdom of England, rotting under the rule of the Evil Queen, with a magical corner still thriving and inhabited by fantastical creatures and pixies who ride on rabbits, and a dangerous and forbidding swamp from which, once entered, rarely anyone emerges alive.
The story begins with a dark shadow descending upon the Kingdom of England after the Evil Queen Ravenna tricks the recently bereaved King (Noah Huntley) into marrying her. She then swiftly dispatches him on their wedding night, thereby adding the Kingdom of England to several European Kingdoms she has already conquered and exerted her tyrannical reign over. As the lifeblood drains from the land and its inhabitants live in fear and subjugation, the adolescent Princess remains imprisoned in the Royal Castle. Resourceful to the extreme, Snow White manages to escape by tricking the Queen’s evil brother as he tries to impose himself upon her. She is subsequently trained in martial arts, ironically, by the huntsman (Chris Hemsworth) sent by the evil Queen to kill her.
Stewart is convincing as a strong, romantic figure, who seeks to right a wrong and whom men are willing to follow to the ends of the earth, some in recognition of her leadership and claim to the throne, others out of love. The seven dwarves, who become devoted followers of the Princess after initially capturing and threatening to kill her, add a comical dimension to the plot without undermining its intent. Bob Hoskins, Roy Winston and other familiar characters whom the audience come to recognise despite the morphing of their physical characteristics into the seven dwarves, are hilarious and wonderfully engaging. Charlize Theron plays is formidable as the archetypal Wicked Witch, if a little one-dimensional at times.
Action, mythical adventure and two of the most beautiful leading ladies in the world, Snow White is a must-see.
Text: Robert McMahon