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Snow White and the Huntsman Review Critics


Dave White Profile

The fumblingest of them all. Read full review


Grae Drake Profile

Real Housewives of Medieval County Read full review

Other Critics provided by

Critics scores range from 0 to 100, with higher scores indicating more favorable reviews.

  • 3.0

    out of 100

    Mixed or average reviews
    based on a weighted average of all
    critic review scores.

  • 50

    out of 100

    The Hollywood Reporter Todd McCarthy

    A bold rethinking of a familiar old story and striking design elements are undercut by a draggy midsection and undeveloped characters in Snow White and the Huntsman.

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  • 58

    out of 100

    Entertainment Weekly Owen Gleiberman

    A tastefully overbearing franchise fairy tale with a handful of ravishing touches.

    Read Full Review

  • 63

    out of 100

    USA Today Scott Bowles

    One of those movies that makes for a fantastic trailer. Much beyond that can feel like repeat viewing.

    Read Full Review

  • 70

    out of 100

    Wall Street Journal Joe Morgenstern

    An evil spell nearly does Snow White in, but it's lifted in the nick of time. The strangest spell afflicts Kristen Stewart; she can't seem to imbue Snow White with anything more than a semblance of feeling. That spell never lifts, but it doesn't make much difference in the end because the forces of good manage to work around it.

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For Families provided by Common Sense Media

OK for kids 14+

Violent fairy tale isn't for kids but will attract teens.

What Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Snow White and the Huntsman isn't the sweet and colorful fairy tale that's depicted in other adaptations: This is a very dark, violent, moody story with a lot of death and mature themes. Charlize Theron's queen is more than evil; she's sadistic and vain and will kill or torture anyone in order to keep her magically eternal youth and beauty (a scene in which she plucks a bloody bird’s heart out of its body and eats is particularly gruesome). The body count is quite high -- usually in hand-to-hand battles -- as is the number of people the queen magically robs of their youth (or life). Although there are a couple of kisses, this Snow White (played by Twilight's Kristen Stewart) isn't preoccupied with romance but rather with saving a kingdom from its tyrannical ruler. 

  • Families can talk about how this depiction of the Snow White story is different than Disney's Snow White, Mirror Mirror, or other adaptations of the fairy tale. Which do you think is truest to the original story?
  • Although this movie is about a fairy tale, it's not really aimed at younger fans of Snow White. Is it appropriate for a Snow White adaptation to be so violent?
  • Talk about the movie's messages about beauty. What traits are described as beautiful in the movie? Does this movie maintain the original story's message about beauty, or is it different? Is this a feminist movie, or not?

The good stuff
  • message true2

    Messages: Most of the movie is clouded in the queen's evil thirst for eternal youth, but there are some inspiring messages about true beauty being of the heart, as exemplified by Snow White. Snow White's loving nature is what makes her unique; she doesn't know how to lead at first, but she knows how to open her heart and care for others, and for that she's beloved as a princess and eventually a queen. Obviously the queen's nefarious plans for domination are a cautionary tale about beauty being a woman's only power, but she does pose interesting questions about how men have historically dominated women and used them for their desires.

  • rolemodels true3

    Role models: Snow White is pure of heart and composes herself in a loving, selfless manner. Even though she has every reason to be afraid and think only of her safety, she's constantly worried about everyone in the kingdom, her good friend the duke, and his son, William. Although he's a reluctant hero, the huntsman rises to the occasion to defend and protect Snow White, and he even grows to care for her -- thinking of someone else for the first time in years -- as they travel together throughout the kingdom. William is an active hero; he jumps at the opportunity to rescue Snow White the moment he learns she's alive and in danger. The queen is clearly evil and not meant to be seen as a role model.

What to watch for
  • violence false4

    Violence: This is a dark and violent story with a high body count. The queen kills scores of people and tortures others by literally sucking their youth out of them so she can magically remain young. She eats birds' hearts (the scene in which she plucks a bloody bird's heart out of its body is a particularly gruesome moment) and can kill in many different ways -- without ever spilling blood. There are battles between phantom armies and the king's army, and then Ravenna's army defeats the king's army and is said to have murdered everyone left in the castle. The queen's creepy brother admits that he has stared at Snow White and then basically attempts to rape her (he gets on top of her forcefully, but she injures him and escapes). Various groups of the Queen's army fight Snow White, the huntsman, and the duke with axes, swords, and arrows. The dark forest is full of frightening creatures that can poison or maim. 

  • sex false3

    Sex: The queen exudes sexuality in nearly every scene. She wears form-fitting gowns and is shown nude descending into a milk bath; her naked lower back is on display several times. The wedding night between the queen and the king isn't graphic, but he's on top of her in bed, kissing and caressing her (until things take a violent turn). Snow White gets a couple of kisses.

  • language false1

    Language: Language includes "hell," "damn," and "stupid."

  • consumerism false0

    Consumerism: Not an issue

  • drugsalcoholtobacco false2

    Drinking, drugs and smoking: Adult characters drink, and a couple of them get drunk (the huntsman in particular is known as a big drinker). The dwarfs all have a few too many, and then one makes a joke about feeling "lovely" because of the "mushrooms" in a fairy forest.