Capsule Movie Review – Mirror Mirror (2012)
by HELEN GEIB
Director Tarsem’s Mirror Mirror is a family friendly re-telling of the Snow White fairytale, revamped for contemporary tastes and with the emphasis on comedy. Snow White (Lily Collins)- her friends call her Snow- is still sweet and lovely, but doesn’t go to sleep. In fact, her concern for her impoverished subjects motivates her to join the dwarves’ band of highwaymen. Yes I said highwaymen: formerly respectable townsfolk, they were banished by edict of the evil queen and took up residence in a mammoth tree stump in the perpetually snow-covered beech forest outside the castle. Still handsome and charming, Snow’s prince (Armie Hammer) is now the one to fall under an enchantment, and like pretty much all the male characters, he has his ridiculous moments. The queen (Julia Roberts) still talks to her mirror and takes vanity to murderous extremes. With a story that’s more fairy tale mash-up and mass market princess fantasy than timeless classic, Mirror Mirror never quite clicks to make movie magic. Childish humor and sexually suggestive one-liners jostle uneasily on the margins (thankfully, there’s not too much of either) and Roberts can’t consistently pull off the evil-funny admixture. However, warts and all it’s quite an enjoyable film and a strong recommendation for children. The heroine is charming and has many admirable qualities; it’s filled with good lessons like not judging people by appearance and standing up for what’s right; and there’s lots of fun acrobatics and sword fighting but no real violence. And it’s as pretty as a picture. Imagination ran riot in creating the colorful fairy tale costumes and the uncluttered sets are the delightful illustrations of a children’s storybook.
2 1/2 stars
One thing I liked and one thing I didn’t like: Instead of the overdone living chess game we got living Battleship, complete with funny battleship hats. I kind of hated the animated prologue.