“Snow White and the Huntsman”
We know this movie only brings one thing to mind, let’s see if we can guess what it is? Maybe, it’s Chris Hemsworth, who proves he’s as good as Hugh Jackman at being an Australian action star. Maybe, it’s because Charlize Theron kills in every scene she’s in. Maybe, it’s that the seven dwarfs are played by seven awesome actors from the U.K. Maybe it’s debut director Rupert Sanders making a pretty epic first film. Or maybe, it’s that the devolution of Kristen Stewart’s talent didn’t stunt this movie. But wait, it’s the evolution of Stewart’s need to prove that she’s rushing headlong into becoming another broken childhood actor, ruined by fame – how’s that for a Grimm Tale. In case you’ve been lost in the woods, Stewart and this film’s director, Sanders, were caught by TMZ, biting each others’ apples. Their indiscretions tarnished the success of the movie and landed any future sequels in jeopardy – way to put the work first guys. It’s a shame because of the wave of recent Snow White projects…this is the fairest of them all – worth a watch.
“Friends with Kids”
Here’s what we got: A group of cool New Yorkers are getting older and they start to marry and have babies and two of the coolest New Yorkers try to hold onto the swinging single life while using each other to have a kid. Yes, it’s pretty much the mixed gender version of “Sex in the City” – but this film never results to melodrama. Something about the chemistry of these characters works. Adam Scott and Jennifer Westfeldt are the coolest New Yorkers. Scott is a natural as a harmless smart-ass and Westfeldt appears fragile as an actor at times, but her fragility plays in her favor here. The rest of the group must’ve just walked over from the “Bridesmaids” set to pitch in as the supporting cast – Kristen Wiig, Jon Hamm, Maya Rudolph and Chris O’Dowd. This isn’t a complete a film as “Bridesmaids” but it is equal parts harsh and heart and it’s worth a watch.
Chloe Grace Moretz is only 15-years-old. It’s hard to believe that back in 2009, Moretz was the voice of Darby on “My Friends Tigger & Pooh.” But during the last three years, she’s been Hit-Girl in “Kick-Ass,” Abby the vampire in “Let Me In,” she worked with Martin Scorsese in “Hugo,” and she has the lead role in this movie. This little list will give you a perspective that sometimes you have to take a step backwards to take three steps forward, because this is definitely a step backward. That doesn’t mean that Moretz is bad, on the contrary, she delivers another great performance. It’s the direction that is flawed – taking too long to develop, moving in dark places without giving the audience an anchor. And that’s not even factoring in the overdone and cliché acting by the supporting cast. There are moments of beauty and cleverness but mostly it’s a meandering dirt road that doesn’t earn the dark themes it reaches for – pass.
- Derrick Bracey, for Weekly Surge