There are two Snow White movies coming out next year, and the second of those two, "Snow White and the Huntsman," features Kristen Stewart, Charlize Theron and Thor. (The other, "Mirror Mirror," has Lily Collins and Julia Roberts.) So it's important to make sure your Snow White distinguishes itself from the competition. Hence Universal's snazzy first trailer for "Snow White and the Huntsman," which arrives in June. It looks really beautiful and yet depresses us to our very core. The fairy tale movie now has its "Dark Knight."
The teaser (which, annoyingly, can't be embedded) explains the concept behind this Snow White rethink. The Evil Queen (Theron) recruits The Huntsman ("Thor's" Chris Hemsworth) to vanquish Snow White (Stewart) so that she doesn't become the fairest in the land. There are twists that happen after that, but the trailer doesn't reveal those, so we won't either. But beyond plot points, the teaser wants you to know very clearly that this isn't the Snow White you remember from Disney. Nope, Universal wants you instead to think about "The Lord of the Rings" and "Twilight" and "Red Riding Hood" and whatever other gloomy, mopey movies are out there. Just so long as you don't think about "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs."
Directed by first-timer Rupert Sanders, "Snow White and the Huntsman" should be visually stunning. Beyond the charcoal-gray color palette, the trailer leans heavy on several striking eye-candy moments, probably the most impressive being the way the movie re-imagines The Evil Queen's magic mirror. (By the way, do you think it might have been an intentional poke at the other Snow White movie to include the "mirror mirror" line in the trailer?)
So, yes, this looks great ... just so long as you don't mind how familiar it all seems. And it's not just the movies that "Huntsman" looks like. The score echoes "Inception" and "Tron: Legacy," and like a lot of recent tentpoles the prevailing attitude seems to be "You're gonna love this movie -- it's not any fun at all." We'll always peg this development to the popularity of Christopher Nolan's Batman movies, which emphasized a dark, serious tone for a popular brand. Now you see that approach taken everywhere, and "Snow White and the Huntsman" is just the latest. You won't catch Stewart or Theron or anybody else smiling in this trailer. They've got to make a big summer movie, people. Nothing in the world is more serious than that.
Snow White and the Huntsman [iTunes]