Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Movie: "Why We So Desperately Want Snow White and the Huntsman to be Good"

Oh fairy tale movies and tv shows.... to be honest, so far, none of you have really been good. None of you have lived up my to the expectations. Granted, we have a bazillion more coming our way in the next few years, but I am already feeling a bit jaded. I have (gasp) Fairy Tale Fatigue.

In a smart and spot-on rant in Io9 called "Why We so Desperately Want Snow White and the Huntsman to be Good," Meredith Woerner examines a thought that is on every fairy tale lover's mind: please dear God, let Snow White and the Huntsman be as awesome as it looks, and not a huge pile of poo. Let it be the chosen one to save us from bad fairy tale adaptations. She gives us several reasons why it could be good:
"Evil Queen Appeal: Charlize Theron's character doesn't just suck the life out of people — she stares her victims in the eye while slowly draining them of their youth. She doesn't just take a stylistically cool white paint bath. She takes the milk bath with her motherfucking crown on. She keeps the crown on.
This is the asshole we want thrusting a sword into the gullet of a Disney princess. This is the evil Maleficent type beast we only saw with pointy hats and green faces. Now she's real, and damn beautiful. We're rooting for this horrific creature. Bring on the pain, bring on the youth sucking and screaming (oh the joyous screaming!). She's a militant female leader without being a "bitch". She doesn't want to toy with Snow White and torture her — she just wants to eat her heart. Hoorah.
New Twist: The look, the feel, the black magic ooze that the queen literally splatters all over her prey — it's all very different from the fantasy we're being currently fed, with the exception of Game of Thrones. In our interview with Huntsman director Rupert Sanders, he revealed he was inspired by "Pre-Raphaelite paintings, Victorian fairy painters who had been locked up in mental institutions," and it shows.
No Cheese: Grimm, Once Upon a Time and Disney have ushered in this strange mandatory cheese policy with the latest batch of fantasy. Storylines don't need to be dumbed down for children just because someone puts a giant stag into it. Screw the kids, don't they have enough?"

Amen to all of that. Give me darkness and blood and hold the cheese. Not in real life, though, cheese is delicious. She also mentions our beloved dwarves, Bob Hoskins, Toby Jones...and she doesn't mention Nick Frost for some reason, but BAM Nick Frost is in it and he is awesome.

She then examines how it might actually be awful.
"All that Awesome Queen Stuff Is Already in the Trailer: Our biggest fear is that all the best evil queen moments have already been presented in the trailers. After all, this movie is titled Snow White and the Huntsman, two characters we've seen maybe 10 seconds of in released clips and various trailers. Did the studio hype up the Evil Queen character's online screen time after the positive response Theron's screams received? Totally possible. But then again, we won't know until we see the film."
This is a legit fear. We keep seeing the same evil queen clips: queen sucking life out of girl, the "Mirror Mirror" oozing reflective man bit, the turning into birds, the white paint bath. Granted, we have not yet seen the iconic "have an apple" moment. Don't forget, in the fabulous Io9 article How To Tell from a Trailer that the Movie is Going to Suck, one of the tell-tale signs is "You've seen five trailers for the same movie, and you've noticed there are only three cool bits, repeated over and over." Luckily, it doesn't seem to fall for any of the other classic blunders listed. 
The other fear in everyone's minds? Kristin Stewart:
"While io9 remains pretty pro K-Stew (Twilight haters to the left, please) the actress has her limitations. Can she play an awkward, lip biting teenager, yes (and very well). A Middle Earth type sword-swinging revolutionary, we're not so sure. Add that to the fact that Stewart is tackling an English accent in this film (which we've yet to really hear thus far) and well, it makes us nervous. The movie has her character's name in the title, and we've seen so little from her in just about anything marketing related. Feels like someone is trying to hide something."
Confession: I have never seen Kristin Stewart act in anything. Never saw Twilight, never saw Adventureland, or The Runaways. I'm basing my opinion on trailers and other people's opinions. However, I do not find it encouraging that I have never seen her facial expression change.

One fear that was not mentioned that definitely concerns me is the really dark evil grungy tone of the world counter balanced with the "Bright Forest" which seems to be populated with pink fairies, flower covered turtles, and possibly the Forest Spirit from Princess Mononoke.

Will they make it work, or will it have the tonal dissonance of Once Upon a Time? Fingers-crossed everyone!

In the mean time, all we can do is watch the two trailers again and hope that it is really as good as it seems:

1 comment:

  1. Yes yes yes. My fears and hopes exactly. And (cough) I'm not a Twilight fan, I think it's terrible, and probably because of Kristen Stewart. Like you said, she wears. The same. Facial. Expression. ALL THE TIME.

    I'm worried it's going to turn out like Red Riding Hood, which looked so good but which I ended up not even seeing when I heard it was just a werewolf-type love story.