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Review: "Mirror Mirror" A Delight

Victoria Gordon |
March 29, 2012 | 11:44 p.m. PDT

Staff Reporter


Who's the fairest of them all? The Queen (Roberts) and Snow White (Collins) in the Queen's court. (disneydreaming.com/Relativity Media)
Who's the fairest of them all? The Queen (Roberts) and Snow White (Collins) in the Queen's court. (disneydreaming.com/Relativity Media)
As Prince Alcott himself says of the classic image of the prince saving the princess, "it's been focus group tested! It works!" Well, move over, princes--time to watch your princesses save the day. 

"Mirror Mirror" tells the story of Snow White (Lily Collins, a proud Trojan), whose father disappeared when she was young. On the day of her eighteenth birthday, the her evil stepmother, Queen Clementianna (Julia Roberts) makes it abundantly clear that her sole hope is to ruin her stepdaughter's beauty. In order to keep herself young and beautiful, the Queen runs the country into abject poverty and spends money on disgusting beauty treatments, lavish balls and servants galore. 

When Prince Alcott of Valencia (Armie Hammer) arrives and the Queen discovers his vast wealth, she attempts to marry him; however, Snow White quickly wins his heart. The Queen banishes her young competitor to the forest, where Snow White befriends a group of seven tiny bandits who train her to fight her way back to her rightful title as Queen--and her true love. 

"Mirror Mirror" is, arguably, the prettiest movie I've seen in years. Director Tarsem Singh transports us to a storybook world where color reigns supreme. Each scene is lush and rich in design and detail, and the costumes (designed by the late Eiko Ishioka) are absolutely stunning. Alan Menken's score adds an element of suspense and excitement to an otherwise serene backdrop. 

In addition, each and every actor manages to craft a unique character in this fairytale world. Julia Roberts shocks with her evil and conniving queen. For an actress known as "America's Sweetheart," Roberts certainly knows how to switch gears and play against type. Armie Hammer, best know for his role in The Social Network, is a modern-day prince who allows his princess to save him. Lily Collins, on the other hand, is a true princess: as an absolutely gorgeous and adorable Snow White, Lily shows us that it really is a woman's world (fight on, Snow!). Instead of the traditional dwarves, Snow's petite friends are wise-cracking thieves (led by the iconic Danny Woodburn) who manage to steal every scene in which they appear. However, the most overlooked performance in the entire film belongs to Nathan Lane's faithful servant. Lane is, as always, brilliant; however, his role is not particularly large. He manages to convincingly play a timid but loyal henchman to the Monarchy, and he provides most of the film's laughs. 

In short, "Mirror Mirror" is the perfect film for anyone who simply wants to smile and see the good girl take down the evil queen. And, of course, anyone who ever dreamed of being a princess. Get ready, ladies: there's a new kind of princess in town. 

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