People searching for something new—maybe some actual female bad-assery rather than the meek compliance of the traditional fairytale princess—will likely be disappointed by the latest fairytale movie, Snow White and the Huntsman
. While this version of Snow White isn’t nearly as stand-there-insipidly as the Disney version, she’s definitely still quite dull, without any real personality or verve. There is a post-death moment where she’s a bit interesting, but most of her qualities are based on her beauty and innocence, which aren’t much. (Some spoilers ahead.)
Charlize Theron, however, was pretty riveting to watch—as usual. She was the ultimate in evil, sucking out the youth of young women—not to the death or via torture a la Erzebet Bathory, but to a pretty ghastly extent all the same—and killing men quite easily. In fact, she was nearly immortal, and she even had a story about why she was so wicked, which is always nice to have. In this case, it was because a king had come to destroy her village and kidnap her as his wife (and later left her for a younger woman, apparently), and her mother put a spell on her to keep her safe, a spell that would ensure that her ethereal beauty would captivate men and leave them at her mercy. Oh noes, the big succubus trope that we’ve seen over and over again in media! It would have been so much more incredible if they’d provided her with more depth about the pain she suffered to become who she was—or, better yet, made the villain an evil king instead, since throughout history it’s been men, not women, who usually cause so much war and destruction.