Monday, 23 April 2012

Mirror Mirror

Rating: ★★

I'm still confused about Mirror Mirror. The big thing in Hollywood at the moment seems to be epic fairy tales. After the massive earnings of Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland it's no surprise that other studios are trying to jump on the band wagon. But this adaptation of the classic Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs is so random it almost feels unfinished. The biggest problem is that throughout the whole film I was trying to figure out whether it was meant to be aimed at kids or adults. The costumes and overall design were very colourful and cartoon-like but most of the jokes were very grown-up. It made me feel a bit weird watching it with lots of kids in the audience.

Should have been called Julia Roberts and the Seven Dwarfs
Julia Roberts was the shining light of hope in this story... and she plays the villain. Even though Julia's performance of the Evil Queen was meant to be funny and wasn't, she still made an excellent villainess, completely stealing the show from Lily Collins as Snow White. But I felt slightly embarrassed for Julia because of the neverending getting old jokes that were in the script. Julia Roberts isn't that old and I doubt any child would get a joke like that anyway. Not to mention it has been done too many times before.

Hollywood going head to head
I'm sure neither Relativity Media or Universal Pictures knew that they would be going head to head this year both releasing films based on Snow White. This rarely happens in the world of cinema. Some examples though are Antz and A Bugs' Life, The Last Song and Dear John and also A Sharks Tale and Finding Nemo. But now two films will be doing battle to see who makes the most money out of Snow White. Universal's Snow White and the Huntsman is much more what audiences are paying to see at the moment. It's a much more dark, sinister and action-packed telling of the fairy tale. This is why Relativity Media probably decided to speed up the release of Mirror Mirror - so that it would come out a couple months before its competitor. Although after seeing the film myself I can say that audiences would be better advised to wait for the other movie.

Covering up the cracks
Director Tarsem Singh seems to me to be a little bit style over substance. Mirror Mirror's colour pallet was almost blinding (like being stabbed in the eye with a highlighter). It also has some of the most outrageous costumes you have ever seen. At one point Lily Collins is wearing a swan on her head! The sets are just as over the top which also makes them very unbelievable. The woods are covered in snow but no one ever looks cold or wears proper winter clothing. I think Tarsem wanted this to look artistic like his other film The Fall but Mirror Mirror just looked tacky and that is coming from someone who would normally love a full-on fairy tale. But I think I'm just going to stick to Disney's Snow White from now on.

Not the fairest plot is the land - That's for sure
The plot is the part that seems the most unfinished. It was just like one event after another and didn't have a proper story arc. I think it might have worked better as a mini series than a feature film. Its hardly anything like the original book. The poisoned apple is basically not in it (I don't understand why they have her holding it in the poster). It's like they took the original story, put it in a blender and then stuck it back together in a completely different order.

After all that I do have to say that Mirror Mirror did have one or two enjoyable scenes. One of them being when the Evil Queen uses giant puppets to try and kill the dwarfs. And if they had aimed the film more at young children it could have been a bit better and might have pulled in more of a profit. But I'm still expecting Snow White and the Huntsman to be the fairest in the land.


  1. Yeah, what a cheek... Julia Roberts definitely is not THAT old, because I'm older and I'm surprisingly young and girlish! For goodness sake!

  2. I love this review. I've seen the tv ads, and wondered what the hell Mirror Mirror might be about, and now I know. Strangely, the review has made me want to go and see the film - it sounds grotesquely wrong enough to appeal on many levels - any film containing that swan head has to be seen! PS thanks for saying Julia Roberts isn't that old ;-)

  3. It was weirdly watchable and if you like over the top fashion you will love it!