Hi, Bryan Here….
I didn’t know what quite to expect from ‘Mirror Mirror’. I have seen the trailers and have compared them to the other Snow White film coming out this year (Snow White and the Huntsman), and immediately knew that ‘Mirror Mirror’ was the sillier of the two. Did I hate ‘Mirror Mirror’? No. Did I like ‘Mirror Mirror’? No. ‘Mirror Mirror’ is a foolish yet whimsical film based on Disney’s classic, Snow White. I have no doubt that ‘Mirror Mirror’ will be eaten up by kids under 12, but if your age is above that of a 6th grader, then you might find yourself angry that you bought a ticket.
That’s not to say that everything in the film is idiotic. By no means is that the case. Julia Roberts just kills the role of the evil queen. Hollywood and Julia…if you’re reading this, give Julia more villain roles. I normally do not really care for Julia Roberts in most films. She plays a lot of the same characters with the exception of a few. But I’ve really never seen her as an evil character and she just nails it. I want to see more of Roberts as the bad guy. And Armie Hammer plays the prince. You might recognize Armie as the Winklevoss twins from ‘The Social Network’. Armie does a great job with what he is given which is not much. I just don’t buy that he is the lovable prince. Sad to say, but it’s true. Then you have Lily Collins as Snow White. Collins was in ‘The Blind Side’ most notably. And Snow White is supposed to be a character full of life and cheerful most of the time. Collins’ Snow White came across as bland as a wet noodle. There was no excitement in her at all. It brought the film down. Then there is Nathan Lane (Timone from Lion King and star of the Birdcage). Nathan Lane is….Nathan Lane. Perfect and over the top as he always is. He plays the Evil Queen’s main servant. He’s cartoony and extremely animated. Then we have the director, Tarsem Singh. Tarsem directed ‘The Cell’, ‘The Fall’, and the recent ‘Immortals’ film prior to ‘Mirror Mirror’. And you can tell. Beautiful scenery, costumes, imagery, and set design throughout. It’s a gorgeous picture to look at and I have no doubt once it come to blu-ray, it will be demo worthy. But, I’m not quite sure what Tarsem was trying to do with ‘Mirror Mirror’. It seems like his kid wanted him to make a Snow White film and that his kid had a lot of input on making the movie that it hindered Tarsem from really portraying what he wanted.
So through most of the film, the story is told through the eyes of the Evil Queen. Snow White’s father, The beloved King “died” long ago leaving the evil queen in charge of the land. She hates everyone, especially Snow White. She has driven the once thriving town to shambles where all the townsfolk are starving and can’t pay the hefty taxes to support the evil queen’s lavish parties. Only out for more money, the evil queen puts a spell on the prince in hopes to marry him so she can get his money. When she notices that he and Snow White like each other, she banishes Snow White and has her killed. But not to her knowledge, she survives and ends up on the doorstep of the seven dwarves. The dwarves were actually pretty cool. They look like giants due to some robotic legs that make them over seven feet tall. And the dwarves, instead of mining, take on the Robin Hood approach. The steal from the rich and give to the poor with keeping some to themselves. And the dwarves are not the dwarves you remember. They are much better. I won’t spoil it, but one of the dwarves names is Napoleon. From here on out, it’s a rush to get Snow White back in her rightful place as the real queen and destroy the evil one. What makes this Snow White tale stand out is that Snow White is not a helpless sap always talking to birds and the animals. Nope, she learns to be one fierce ninja who can take on quite a few enemies. That I liked. And there is a very big cameo at the end of the film. Much like there was in the Kevin Costner ‘Robin Hood’ film. So stay tuned for that.
Overall, there are some good things and some bad things. I can’t see anyone coming back a year from now and wanting to watch it. It enters your mind and then immediately leaves. It’s fluff and style over substance and storytelling. I wish it were difference because it had the potential to go the distance, but it fell short. Almost like if the movie ate a poisoned apple at the beginning.
– Bryan Kluger