“Mirror, Mirror on the wall, whose idea was it to release a movie the same week as The Hunger Games?” I had to find out. What movie thought it could run up against and have a chance of competing with the biggest thing in movies since the Twilight series?
A movie starring Julia Roberts and Nathan Lance MIGHT have had a chance. But what have we really got here? A story (Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs) that has been told and retold for decades, combined with limited and somewhat uninspired sets, a script that is accidentally funny maybe 3 times and a pack of rebel dwarfs.
What this movie does have other than star power is an incredible wardrobe (yes, I’m still lobbying for elaborate ball gowns to make a comeback), and a gorgeous prince and princess. But is that enough to carry this somewhat tired plot?
Yes and no. For the first 2/3s of the movie, I was thinking I couldn’t wait to get home and hammer out a caustic review because I had been spoon fed the material to do so. But this film does sort of bring it together in the 11th hour and I found myself actually paying attention, laughing a couple times and maybe, just maybe, inching a little forward in my seat in anticipation of the outcome.
Family features today, through solid script writing, entertain parents and kids alike. Mirror Mirror falls grievously short of this mark. The dialogue was too dumbed-down and cliché for adults, and occasionally too sophisticated for kids.
It’s painful to sit through an effort that has all the elements of a successful picture but doesn’t deliver. It’s not enough to put Julia Roberts in a lead role. It’s not enough to have elaborate costumes and gorgeous actors in supporting roles. I would say if you’re tapping your fingers at a Red Box, and don’t know what else to rent, give this a try when it’s released on DVD (as a backup). Here again, the release of the DVD, just like the movie, is ill-timed. It will be available for rent just about the time everyone is enjoying spring and summer weather, when rotting in front of a half-hearted theatrical attempt is the last thing on a viewer’s mind.
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