ALSO OPENING: Mirror, Mirror
Mirror, Mirror is one dimensional family entertainment, writes Tymon Smith
Director: Tarsem Singh
Cast: Julia Roberts, Lily Collins, Armie Hammer, Nathan Lane
Of the two retellings of the Grimm Brothers’ fairytale – the other Snow White and the Huntsman stars Kristen Stewart and Charlize Theron is released later this year – this is the flat, Hallmark take – you know, for kids.
Julia Roberts camps it up as the evil queen whose most noticeable asset is the variety of ridiculous costumes she wears. Lily Collins plays a Princess Diaries version of Snow White, who with the help of Hollywood dwarf A-List must defeat the queen and win back her sweetheart prince (Hammer), claim her birthright and return the kingdom to its salad day status quo.
Director Tarsem Singh’s trademark visual artistry is wasted in a film that is made up of overdressed sets and horrid attempts at wit, only showing promise in the opening sequence, which is the best thing in the film.
Family entertainment it may be but there’s a pointless flatness that permeates the whole film to the point where one has to wonder why anyone would bother getting involved in the first place and why a made for TV version without any stars wouldn’t work just as well.
It’s supposed to be some sort of redo of the story with a contemporary edge for modern kids but it isn’t and with a weak script, cardboard sensibility and one dimensional performances – it never elevates itself above the level of backwoods Christmas pantomime.
If this is a preview of the crowd pleasing, popcorn chomping, bums-on-seats, summer fare that the US plans to dump on the world in the next few months then perhaps a cinema boycotting hibernation period is in order. There are far better films to keep youngsters entertained on the shelves of your local DVD store.