Mirror Mirror (2012)

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Released 26-Sep-2012

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Adventure Featurette-Behind The Scenes-Looking Through the Mirror
Featurette-Prince & Puppies
Theatrical Trailer
Trailer-x 2 for other films
Rating Rated PG
Year Of Production 2012
Running Time 103:53
RSDL / Flipper Dual Layered Cast & Crew
Start Up Ads Then Menu
Region Coding 4 Directed By Tarsem Singh
Studio
Distributor

Roadshow Home Entertainment
Starring Julia Roberts
Lily Collins
Armie Hammer
Nathan Lane
Jordan Prentice
Mark Povinelli
Case ?
RPI ? Music Alan Menken


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None English Dolby Digital 5.1 (448Kb/s)
English Descriptive Audio Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio 1.85:1
16x9 Enhancement
16x9 Enhanced
Video Format 576i (PAL)
Original Aspect Ratio 1.85:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles English for the Hearing Impaired Smoking No
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits No

NOTE: The Profanity Filter is ON. Turn it off here.

Plot Synopsis

     When her father the King disappears into the forest, beautiful Snow White (Lily Collins) and the kingdom fall under the ruthless control of her step-mother The Queen (Julia Roberts). She is an evil witch; she keeps Snow White isolated within the castle while she bleeds the population dry to fund her lavish lifestyle. When handsome and rich Prince Alcott (Armie Hammer) arrives in the kingdom, The Queen decides she will marry him to revive her fortunes. However, at a grand ball Prince Alcott and Snow White fall in love. The Queen orders her steward Brighton (Nathan Lane) to take Snow White into the forest and kill her but he cannot do it and abandons her instead, where she is discovered and taken in by the Seven Dwarfs. Back in the castle, The Queen uses a magic potion to make Prince Alcott fall in love with her, which works but has some unintended side effects. Can Snow White save her true love, and the kingdom, in time?

     Mirror Mirror it a modern take on the Snow White fairy tale, but in a lot of ways it is old fashioned, wholesome family fun. There is no crude humour, the evil queen is dastardly but funny and even the CGI monster is not overly scary. In fact, it is almost cute! It is true that director Tarsem Singh, as he showed in Immortals (2011), does have a visual style that can overwhelm the plot and characters. Yet, in Mirror Mirror the plot, and the conclusion, is well known to everyone but the female characters, the dwarfs, and the visuals carry the film along.

     The film looks gorgeous. Shot on HD digital cameras the CGI snowy landscapes, the forest and the castle look stunning. The print has been colour corrected giving a brown tone throughout and much of the colour scheme is quite drab so that the dazzling costumes of The Queen, all gold and red, or the blues of Snow White’s clothes stand out in vibrant contrast. Lily Collins as Snow White is excellent; she is very beautiful but natural and exhibits a nice sparkle and a sense of humour while Julia Roberts seems to be having a good time and gets to deliver some funny, b****y lines, including the opening monologue that sets the tone for the film. Armie Hammer is wooden and a bit of a dill, but he is handsome enough while the Seven Dwarfs are individual and very funny. Viewers will have different favourites but I loved Napoleon (Jordan Prentice).

     The orchestral score is by Alan Menkin, who has been nominated for numerous Oscars and has won eight (a record for a living composer) although his last win was for Pocahontas in 1996. He provides a lush, old fashioned score that works perfectly and then at the end the film throws in a Bollywood style song and dance number. Some have criticised this change in tone, but the song is infectious, a lot of fun and ends the film perfectly on a high note.

     Mirror Mirror has had mixed reviews but it is a fun, infectious take on the old fairy tale. I may have been a bit disappointed that in a film called Mirror Mirror The Queen didn’t say “mirror mirror on the wall, who is the fairest of them all”, but that is just me. Otherwise this is a fun family film with something for everyone.

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Transfer Quality

Video

     Mirror Mirror is presented in an aspect ratio of 1.85:1, the original theatrical ratio, and is 16x9 enhanced.

     As noted, the film looks gorgeous. Shot on HD digital cameras the CGI snowy landscapes, the forest and the castle look stunning. Detail is exemplary. The print has been colour corrected extensively giving a brown tone throughout and much of the colour scheme is quite drab so that the dazzling colours of costumes of The Queen and Snow White stand out. The blacks are deep and solid, shadow detail excellent.

     Marks and artefacts are absent except for the CGI used to extend the legs of the dwarfs when they become robbers. This is a concertina type effect that shows aliasing that looked a bit distracting. Otherwise it is an excellent print.

     There are English subtitles for the hearing impaired.

     I did not notice a layer change on my equipment.

Video Ratings Summary
Sharpness
Shadow Detail
Colour
Grain/Pixelization
Film-To-Video Artefacts
Film Artefacts
Overall

Audio

     Audio is an English Dolby Digital 5.1 at 448 Kbps plus an English descriptive audio Dolby Digital 2.0 at 192 Kbps for the vision impaired.

     The audio track is excellent. Dialogue was clear, centred and easy to understand. The surrounds are constantly in action with music, crowd noises and forest sounds. Panning effects occurred where appropriate, such as when the monster flits around the sound stage in the forest. The sub-woofer added bass to music and effects but did not draw attention to itself.

    Lip synchronisation was fine.

     The orchestral music by Alan Menkin is a lush, old fashioned score that works perfectly for the film. As noted, at the end of the film is an infectious Bollywood style song and dance number.

Audio Ratings Summary
Dialogue
Audio Sync
Clicks/Pops/Dropouts
Surround Channel Use
Subwoofer
Overall

Extras

     On start-up the following trailers play and need to be skipped: Hope Springs (2:20) and LOL (2:11).

Looking Through the Mirror (12:25)

     An EPK but not a bad one. A lot of behind the scenes footage, rather than film footage, plus interviews with cast Lily Collins, Julia Roberts, Armie Hammer and Nathan Lane plus producer Bernie Goldman, executive producers Kevin Misher and Jeff Waxman, costume designer Eiko Ishioka, cinematographer Brendan Galvin and VFX supervisor Tom Wood. The surprising omission is director Tarsem Singh. Topics include the director’s vision, sets, costumes and visual effects.

Prince & Puppies (1:53)

     A silly look at Armie Hammer being taught by puppies for his role in the film.

Theatrical Trailer (1:59)

R4 vs R1

NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.

     The US Region 1 release of Mirror Mirror has identical extras, although the Blu-ray Region A adds deleted scenes, a look at the music number and a story book. Our own Region B Blu-ray also has these additional extras as well, but not our DVD. As far as DVD is concerned, it is a draw.

Summary

     Mirror Mirror is the Snow White fairy tale for a modern age. It is old fashioned, wholesome fun family film with something for everyone.

     The video and audio are very good. Extras are limited, but are the same as available on DVD in other regions.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Ray Nyland (the bio is the thing)
Wednesday, October 10, 2012
Review Equipment
DVDSony BDP-S580, using HDMI output
DisplayLG 55inch HD LCD. This display device has not been calibrated. This display device is 16x9 capable. This display device has a maximum native resolution of 1080p.
Audio DecoderNAD T737. This audio decoder/receiver has not been calibrated.
AmplificationNAD T737
SpeakersStudio Acoustics 5.1

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