Which brings us to Tarsem Singh's Mirror Mirror. This year's second of three retellings of the Brothers Grimm's unforgettable Snow White fairy tale (Grimm's Snow White this past February, and June's Snow White and the Huntsman rounding out the year of White) is a cute, self-indulgent experience, which likely falls into the latter category.
Tarsem (Immortals, The Fall) is literally a visionary director, littering the screen with vibrancy enough to choke an art gallery. His use of exotic costumes against wondrously colorful backdrops is a given in his films, and for Mirror Mirror, he does not disappoint in that department. Lavish, bright, eye-arresting, all words that are fit to describe the film's visuals, costumes and fantastical sets. Sadly for this Mirror, there is more to enjoying a film than just feeding your eyes while depriving your brain.
We're all familiar with the tale of Snow White, and her Evil Queen of a stepmother (played masterfully with a wink and a nod here by Oscar winner Julia Roberts). There is insecurity, beauty that the aforementioned magical mirror, and of course, seven dwarfs. Sadly for this latest installment, you aren't offered much in the way of fresh storytelling here. There are roughly 45 seconds of screen time devoted to standing up for diminutive folk, reminding the audience it's never good to judge people based on their looks, as well as a modest attempt to make our heroine a modern day She-Ra, and, nay, your typical damsel. Sadly, in the end, she still requires the typical rescuing.
If there were one surprise in the picture, it would be a minor, yet ultimately satisfying Game of Thrones cameo, introducing one new facet of the story I hadn't come across before. Long live Ned Stark.
Mirror Mirror is a beautiful treat for your eyes, which offers a few laughs, and some modest re-telling of a weathered tale. It will not light your world on fire, but if you are looking for a predictable reflection, this might be a mirror worth gazing into. Otherwise, allow me to recommend Walt Disney's classic version, which seems to never age, or keep your eye on Twilight's Kristen Stewart in this summer's Snow White and the Huntsman (now including more Thor!).