"If you ever want to feel like you're being punished by sitting through a movie, then I invite you to view all 106 minutes of Mirror Mirror. It's a film that should only be used to entertain the very young at home as a distraction so that those looking after them can do something else."
I'm thinking of this as more of a public service announcement than a review, really. Initially, I didn't even want to write a review for this as I'd rather not admit I saw it, but I feel somewhat obligated by how much of a drag I found it to be.
In starting this "movie critic" thing I have going here, I've made a promise to myself to try and give all movies a fair shake. Leaving negative bias at the door and taking them for what they are so that I can craft a fair review. So here I was going into this movie I had no desire to see (with some friends who actually had that desire) while maintaining that state of mind: "perhaps this isn't a movie for little kids only and it wont be a chore to sit through...the director has talent and people like that Roberts woman..." So here's my unbiased review.
I'm of the mind that kids movies don't have to be no-brain, visually hypnotic, slapstick fests. Kids movies can actually be intelligent and can even contain humor that's enjoyable for adults. Look at Shrek 1 and 2 and pretty much any Pixar movie. Personally, when (or if) I have kids, I'll want to have them watch movies that don't insult their intelligence. Though I do acknowledge the use of these dumb attention grabbing kids movies as
being a good distraction for parents to actually relax for a few
minutes. That all being said, Mirror Mirror came across to me as one of those lame kids movies.
It starts out decently enough with a voice over by Julia Roberts, as the evil queen, giving the back story of Snow White's past, but it rapidly falls apart from there. The dialog is cheesy and boring/bad, the comedy is next to harmless and mostly bad slapstick, several characters are annoying or straight up stupid (ones who aren't intended to be)...it's pretty much all bad news here.
It's a movie for children that takes a few shots at entertaining adults that most always miss the mark. There are maybe 2 or 3 lines in the entire movie I found entertaining, but asides from that it's completely for the very young ones. It even attempts to make a statement about strong independent
women close to the end, but it's poorly done and at that point in the
movie you could really give 2 rips. About a 3rd of the way through the movie I actually attempted to take a nap, but failed due to the movie being too loud and my seat not being comfortable enough.
Honestly, the only good thing I can say about this movie is the art direction and cinematography are top notch. The environments and costumes are interesting and well done and the movie is shot well. Also the acting is serviceable, so there's that too. You can thank director Tarsem Singh for these touches because he has a great visual style. However, given his clever and terrific film The Fall, you'd expect so much more from him.
So if you ever want to feel like you're being punished by sitting through a movie, then I invite you to see Mirror Mirror. Because holy hell does it suck for adults. It's a film that should only be used to entertain the very young at home as a distraction so those looking after them can do something else. Save your hard earned theater money for a kids movie worth seeing, such as the next Pixar film Brave (coming August 31st of this year).
Kids Movie score: 5/10
General Score = 2.5/10