Snow White (film series)

Snow White & The Seven Dwarfs / Snow White & The Huntsman

D: David Hand
Disney (Walt Disney)
US 1937
82 mins


W: Ted Sears, Otto Englander, Earl Hurd, Dorothy Ann Blank, Richard Creedon, Dick Richard, Merrill de Maris & Webb Smith [based on the fairy tale "Snow White" by The Brothers Grimm]
Mus: Frank Churchill, Leigh Harline & Paul SmithLarry Morey

voices of: Adriana Caselotti (Snow White), Harry Stockwell (The Prince), Lucille La Verne (Queen Grimhilde), Roy Atwell (Doc), Billy Gilbert (Sneezy), Pinto Colvig (Grumpy / Sleepy), Otis Harlan (Happy), Scotty Mattraw (Bashful)

The first feature length cartoon was a painstaking effort for its animators, taking years in the making, and was considered, at the time at least, a huge risk by producer Walt Disney. In Hollywood, it's widely said that "nobody knows anything", so of course the film was bound to be a worldwide success, as timeless now as it ever was.
The darkness of The Grimm Brothers fairytale has of course been toned down for a more child-friendly audiences, but still has occasional moments of horror, such as the evil queen's transformation to the wicked witch, seducing the virginal Snow White with a poisoned apple so she can finally be the most beautiful woman in the kingdom. The memorable songs however, are all light-hearted and pastoral, not to mention iconic.
Though cel animation has since been replaced by technological advancement and computer-generated images, it cannot be denied that Snow White & The Seven Dwarfs was a groundbreaking achievement.

Snow White & The Seven Dwarfs
Snow White & The Seven Dwarfs

D: Rupert Sanders
Universal (Joe Roth, Sam Mercer & Palak Patel)
US 2012
127 mins


W: Evan Daugherty, John Lee Hancock & Hossein Amini [based on the fairy tale by The Brothers Grimm]
DP: Greig Fraser
Ed: Conrad Buff & Neil Smith
Mus: James Newton Howard
PD: Dominic Watkins
Cos: Colleen Atwood

Kristen Stewart (Snow White), Chris Hemsworth (Eric, the Huntsman), Charlize Theron (Queen Ravenna), Sam Claflin (William), Bob Hoskins (Muir), Ian McShane (Beith), Ray Winstone (Gort), Nick Frost (Nion)

Following the success of 2010's Alice In Wonderland and the conveyor belt of "re-imagined" fairytales as live action projects, it wasn't going to take long for Snow White to get some Hollywood remake treatment. In fact, 2012 saw two adaptations, with Mirror Mirror (qv) released a little earlier the same year.
Snow White & The Huntsman is a reasonably entertaining fantasy, filmed in an apt gothic style with macabre set design, luxurious costume design and impressive visual effects. It's unfortunate that the casting director's didn't have the same eye for aptitude when they cast the repugnant Kristen Stewart as the title character. Charlize Theron, on the other hand, is a much better choice as the pantomime villain.
Most people should be familiar with the Snow White fairytale made most popular with Disney's version (Snow White & The Seven Dwarfs), but perhaps young children won't be, for which this film would generally be unsuitable due to its dark style and mild horror. This is really for a teenage audience and fans of the Twilight movies, both of whom ought to have seen the animated version, so the storyline should have no surprises, until that is, when Snow White's character becomes a powerful warrior, who delivers a Elizabeth I-style monologue before going once more into the breach as though she were Henry V.
It would seem that most modern fantasy movies owe a huge debt of gratitude to the template set down by Peter Jackson's Lord Of The Rings trilogy, of which Snow White & The Huntsman is actually guiltier than most.

Kristen Stewart in Snow White & The Huntsman
Kristen Stewart in Snow White & The Huntsman


D: Cedric Nicolas-Troyan

Universal / Perfect World (Joe Roth)

US 🇺🇸 2016

114 mins


W: Evan Spiliotopolous & Craig Mazan [based on characters created by Evan Daugherty]

DP: Phedon Papamichael

Ed: Conrad Buff

Mus: James Newton Howard

PD: Dominic Watkins

Cos: Colleen Atwood

Chris Hemsworth (Eric), Emily Blunt (Queen Freya), Charlize Theron (Queen Ravenna), Jessica Chastain (Sara), Nick Frost (Nion), Rob Brydon (Gryff), Sheridan Smith (Bromwyn)

Inspired by Hans Christian Anderson’s “The Snow Queen” more than the original fairy tale by the Brothers Grimm, resulting in a sequel to Snow White & The Huntsman that doesn’t actually feature Snow White. 

I don’t really have a problem with this, since I felt Kristen Stewart was miscast in the first movie and felt the movie was quite poor due to this.

Sadly, this sequel isn’t a great deal better, with Chris Hemsworth revisiting his huntsman character, showing his backstory and exile from his kingdom & subsequent revenge against the queen who betrayed him.

It’s standard fairytale stuff with a big budget, fancy costumes, fantastical sets and a whole glut of CGI effects, but feels more like a cash-in on the success of 2013’s Frozen (qv) rather than anything tied into the world of Snow White & The Seven Dwarfs.


Chris Hemsworth & Jessica Chastain in The Huntsman: Winter’s War
Chris Hemsworth & Jessica Chastain in The Huntsman: Winter’s War