Snow White and the Huntsman

Rated 4.0

This is an engaging and welcome de-Disneyfication of the old fairy tale, grimed-up and pitched at teenage girls while still remaining accessible to everyone else. It has some weaknesses—a little too much gratuitous spectacle and not enough of the villain—but those are flaws only if you walk into it churlishly. Here we have Charlize Theron as wicked ice queen Ravenna, who after seducing then killing the king, locks his daughter, Snow White (Kristen Stewart), up in a dark tower to let the young girl’s beauty rot away. After she blossoms in her cell and manages to escape, a growling huntsman (Chris Hemsworth) is set loose on Snow White’s trail, which also crosses that of a band of ruffian dwarves. Her adventures with the conflicted huntsman and her eight little friends adds seasoning to a rebellious stew that builds up to a Joan of Arc-ian crusade back to Ravenna’s despairing kingdom. Theron sinks her teeth into the role like it’s Shakespeare, and Stewart has an earthy beauty that plays well against medieval despair, and despite the Twilight haters, she handles herself capably here. Cinemark 14, Feather River Cinemas and Paradise Cinema 7. Rated PG-13