Some trends seem to last forever. A few years ago everything was about animated zoo animals, more recently zombies have been explored in every genre and every possible medium. When I was a kid I remember many variations on ninja animals and even further back every other movie was about surfing. Trends are likely to continue to dominate the entertainment scene and fairy tales seem to be in full swing.
I am a bit of a closet fan of this trend. I am one of the only people I know who actually follows Once Apon a Time closely enough to know what is happening and I was one of the only people I know who actually really liked Brothers Grim. I was even a fan of Hansel and Gretel, though don’t expect me to defend it in print. Even I couldn’t put a good defense into writing.
It was from this perspective that I finally got around to watching Mirror Mirror . Well, even I can’t get behind this. This is pretty darn horrible. I could have guessed that from the ratings on IMDB or from any number of critics I follow but some people just have to learn for themselves. It seems to want to be a satire of the genre but it waffles between serious and silly a little too much to pin down. The script has moments of funny but they are surrounded by predictability and in the case of the dwarves, down right insulting stereotypes.
The one bright spot I saw was the cast. There is a good amount of talent here though they don’t have a huge amount to work with. Armie Hammer has perfected the slightly obtuse aristocrat and Nathan Lane is fantastic as Brighton the cowardly toady and substitute for the classic woodsman in the Snow White story. I was even ok with Lily Collins as the poor hard done by princess. Julia Roberts had her moments of brightness but seemed to be phoning it in for most of the movie. The dwarves, well, lets just not talk about them. It hurts my head to even think about how bad they were. They were such stereo types I expected a yellow brick road to appear and guide them back home.
In the end this is a movie that had some good concepts but the execution killed it long before any poison apple could have.