Mirror Mirror (2012)

Mirror Mirror (2012)
Mirror Mirror (2012) DVD / Blu-ray

By: Billy Arceneaux (Two Beers) –
How many beers do you recommend for this movie?
1 Beer! A Toast! Great Movie!2 Beers! Good Movie!3 Beers! Okay Movie!4 Beers! Mediocre Movie!5 Beers! Awful Movie!6-Pack! Bad movie! Do not be Sober!

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“Say hello to my little friend!” was cut from the movie! “Say hello to my little friend!” was cut from the movie!

The above is a reference to the god-awful use of the famous “Scarface” line in the trailer for the film about to be reviewed. Despite the pretty look of the footage, I couldn’t get that line – spoken by one of the seven dwarves in a HI-larious way – out of my head. Unless you’re one of the writers of Epic Movie, you should know better than to script such dialogue. To my undying gratitude, this line was cut. You know, sometimes, it’s not what’s IN a movie that makes me smile, but what’s CUT OUT of a movie…

Only he can pull that line off.

The first theatrical Snow White adaptation of the year, directed by the man who recently brought us Immortals, tells the story of, well, Snow White (Lily Collins) – though, the Queen (Julia Roberts) would prefer it be about her. The Queen has isolated Snow from the rest of the land ever since the disappearance of the King, and has treated the people very unfairly. Snow has put up with the Queen long enough, and, with the help of a band of thieves and a love-struck Prince (Armie Hammer), will try and take back the crown.

A Toast

Mirror Mirror is almost perfect, and it’s not just because it looks pretty. Yes, the production design is wonderful, as are the costumes. But this is more than just eye candy – which was all Immortals had going for it. This is a very charming adventure story that, I feel, can be enjoyed by all ages. Lily Collins is cute, Armie Hammer is dashing and Julia Roberts plays a bitch rather well.

When rating the film on Flixster, I found it odd that most of the comments were negative. Some complained that Julia overacted, while others said that the story was unoriginal. I really disagree with these sentiments. Julia played up the vain Queen well enough (though maybe more evil would’ve helped). And the story being unoriginal? This is a fairly clever twist on a familiar fairy tale, much like that Drew Barrymore movie Ever After. If this adaptation is indeed a carbon copy of another work (I don’t follow fairy tales that often), I suggest you not worry about it, and let the whimsy wash over you.

Relax and enjoy.

Beer Two

While watching the movie, I couldn’t help but imagine if it took a major risk; if it had instead been presented as either a silent film or a musical. The visuals and the music worked SO well, I started seeing title cards replacing the dialogue in the theater of my mind. And it worked!

This would’ve made for a great musical as well – maybe not a traditional Meet Me in St. Louis musical, but perhaps one with repurposed songs. The end credits have a joyous and lovely performance that had me wishing for more. Again, with such visuals, music and actors, it could’ve worked.

Of course, neither of those would fly in today’sHollywood. One can always wonder, though.

Silence didn’t hurt Alice…

Verdict

A wonderful score, lovely visuals, a fun adventure and minimal kiddie humor make Mirror Mirror a delightful surprise. Don’t be ashamed if you find yourself jumping up and down in your seat with the other children.

 

Bonus Drinking Game

Take a Drink: when you wonder what Terry Gilliam would’ve done with the same material (though Tarsem did a great job).

Take a Drink: if you imagined this movie as a silent.

Take a Drink: for every musical sequence

Take a Drink: every time Julia Roberts says something catty

Drink a Shot: for when you see Sean Bean – He’s in this movie?

About Bill Arceneaux

Independent film critic from New Orleans and member of the Southeastern Film Critics Association (SEFCA).

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