Oscar® Nominee for Best Visual Effects and Best Costume Design
Snow White and the Huntsman also known as “Snow White & the Huntsman”
Reviewed by: Thaisha Geiger
Action Adventure Fantasy Drama Adaptation
2 hr. 7 min.
Year of Release:
June 1, 2012 (wide—3,700+ theaters)
DVD: September 11, 2012
goodness vs. evil
how evil infiltrates using things that seem beautiful and wonderful
cruelty and abuse
the importance of guarding your heart
Where does true, lasting beauty really exist, in the physical body or in the soul and spirit?
obsessive vanity and pride versus Christian humility
Does modern society value youthful appearance over inward beauty? Why has this happened?
consequences of bitterness and jealousy
importance of helping protect the weak and innocent
courage, bravery, self-sacrifice
What moral messages were contained in the original Snow White fairytale?
What should followers of Christ do when fear attempts to envelop our minds?
the need to have “eyes that see” / wisdom
“from the producer of ‘Alice in Wonderland’”
“Snow White and the Huntsman” is a retelling of the classic fairy tale. It shouldn’t be compared to “Mirror Mirror,” at all. It’s darker and more mature in its storytelling. With that said, it’s definitely not for small kids. Though a bit lacking in plot, it’s a visually appealing movie with wonderful art direction.
Kristen Stewart stars as Snow White, a prisoner within her father’s former kingdom after Ravenna (Charlize Theron) brutally makes herself queen. The plot is basic, Snow White’s fairness and innocence can give Ravenna true immortality, but before, the evil stepmother is able to murder the fair maiden, Snow White manages to escape into the Dark Forest. The huntsman (Chris Hemsworth) is hired to track down the escaped prisoner, but soon finds himself switching sides. Interestingly, there is no prince in this retelling, rather a duke’s son, Snow’s childhood friend, William (Sam Claflin).
Though there are hints of romance, it mostly takes a backseat within the storytelling. I thought it wise to avoid the romance cliché; the movie is primarily filled with Snow White escaping, bonding with the Huntsman and the lead up to a showdown with the Evil Queen. It felt as if, perhaps, this movie is more a set up to any potential sequels.
All performances are strong, though Charlize Theron is the shining star. Some might say that she is a bit overly dramatic, but a queen obsessed with beauty and power would naturally be overdramatic. Theron delivers a memorable, complex performance which even helps the audience oddly empathize with the queen’s downward spiral as she desperately tries to stay young and beautiful.
Ravenna’s wedding dress is very low cut. After the wedding, the king is shown kissing Ravenna on her neck and lying on top of her in bed. Ravenna is shown topless from the back and from the front (hands on her breasts) as she dips and emerges from a milk bath. She’s shown from the back one more time as she ages. Though Snow White’s dress is mostly modest, when it’s wet, her cleavage is briefly shown. Finn, Ravenna’s brother, seems to desire Snow White. When he enters her prison cells, he touches her on the waist and caresses her face.
I only heard one misuse of “hell.” Other than that, I believe there is no other profanity in the film. There is a lot of magic, though it’s shown mostly as a negative thing. The magic spell which keeps Ravenna young come with a heavy price and loneliness. The Dark Forest makes some people hallucinate—seeing worms, gargoyles, melting flesh, branches become snakes, etc. A flashback shows a spell being created by drops of blood.
The violence is heavy. There are several battle scenes (one might argue they take up the majority of the film). People are vividly stabbed with swords, knives and punctured with arrows. The deaths are a bit more realistic than usual, with the victims writhing in pain and then dying. Some are shown decaying after their deaths. Ravenna straddles the king and stabs him in the heart. Ravenna is shown stopping people’s hearts and sucking the youth from young girls. Snow White is violently poisoned by an apple.
The character of Snow White didn’t have many lines in the film, thus resulting in her character being more shy and reserved. Rather than finding this boring, I found it refreshing and believable. Being imprisoned for most of her life, she has no one with whom to speak, so naturally her words would be few. Most importantly, however, it makes her spoken words that much more important (Proverbs 10:19). Throughout the film, she’s portrayed as intelligent, brave, and loyal—through her actions and not by words (1 John 3:18). I found her character to be admirable. Snow White even confronts the Huntsman about his excessive drinking and states that she no longer feels hatred for the queen but sorrow (Ephesians 4:31-32).
Overall, I liked the movie. Though not great, it was much better than I thought it’d be. If a sequel is made, I’d be willing to see it. If so, hopefully less time will be spent on battles and visually stunning scenes and more on plot and character development. If the above content doesn’t seem overly offensive, then I recommend it for viewing.
Violence: Heavy / Profanity: Minor / Sex/Nudity: Moderate
See list of Relevant Issues—questions-and-answers.
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