Previews: Beauty and the Beast trailer, Moana, More!

This week’s preview of coming attractions includes the new Beauty and the Beast trailer, plus Live By Night, Moana and more…

Beauty and the Beast Trailer

Here is the first Beauty and the Beast trailer. The first thing that stands out is the accents of the cast; those familiar with the animated classic may find it strange to hear well-known characters with British accents. The second notable thing is how much the sets, props, and costumes resemble the animated film. The film features new songs, as well as the original score. Starring Emma Watson and Dan Stevens, Beauty and the Beast is set for release on 17th March 2017.

Live By Night Trailer

Ben Affleck directs and stars in Live By Night. The crime thriller is based on the Dennis Lehane novel. From the trailer at least, Affleck seems to emulate the classic Warner Bros gangster movies. Also starring Zoe Saldana and Elle Fanning, Live By Night hits UK screens on 13th January 2017.

Moana Clip

Here is a clip from the upcoming Moana. The film features the voices of Auli’i Carvalho and Dwayne Johnson. It will be interesting to see if directors Ron Clements and John Musker can recapture their earlier magic. Moana launches on to UK screens on 2nd December 2016.

Ghost in the Shell Featurette

Ghost in the Shell is based on the manga series of the same name. This featurette goes behind the scenes on the making of the film, speaking to director Rupert Sanders and others. Starring Scarlett Johansson, Ghost in the Shell is scheduled for release on 31st March 2017.

Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets Trailer

Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets is the latest film from filmmaker Luc Besson. Benson follows Lucy with another sci-fi film, albeit a futuristic, space-set one. The film stars Dane DeHaan and Cara Delevingne. Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets is out in UK cinemas in Summer 2017.

Film Review: Snow White and the Huntsman

Visually alluring, Snow White and the Huntsman is a feast for the eyes. Unfortunately the rest of the film does not reach for the same apex as the art direction.

Following her father’s death, Snow White is locked away by her stepmother the Queen. A huntsman is sent to kill her when she escapes to the woods. Things get complicated, however, when the huntsman discovers Snow White’s true identity, and the implication this has on the kingdom…

In some ways, Snow White and the Huntsman reverts back to the traditional tale in terms of the brutality of the Queen. The film is more vicious than the Disney version of the tale. This works well to build an antagonist that is truly nasty; a good contrast to the fair heroine.

The main problem with Snow White and the Huntsman is that the first half of the film is very dull. Director Rupert Sanders gives the audience very little to spark the interest. The screenplay is lacklustre, and there is not even a decent set piece to capture the attention. The second half of the film fairs better, but Snow White and the Huntsman never quite recovers from the boredom of what precedes this.

Snow White and the Huntsman illustrates what appears to be some rich influences. Aside from the fairy tale itself, Snow White’s connection to nature evokes Excalibur, while the image of the strewn bodies on the Queen’s floor is suggestive of Elizabeth Bathory. Elsewhere, the troll and fairies seem an excessive exercise for a tale that already boasts a wealth of fantasy imagery.

The art direction of Snow White and the Huntsman is superb. David Warren and his team should be applauded for creating such a memorable and distinctive look for the film. Likewise, Colleen Atwood’s costumes are fantastic, as are the special effects.

Despite a strong cast, performances in Snow White and the Huntsman are lacking. Charlize Theron is a fine actress, but here her delivery is caricature; no doubt thanks to the direction she was given. Kristen Stewart does little to endear herself to audiences, while Chris Hemsworth also struggles with the material.

Snow White and the Huntsman is ultimately not as enjoyable as it should have been. On paper it has so much going for it, but sadly the realisation is different.

Snow White and The Huntsman Trailer

The film may be called Snow White and The Huntsman, but this trailer is all about Charlize Theron’s Evil Queen. Directed by Rupert Sanders, this looks as if it will be a definitive live-action fairy tale. This is especially pertinent, as next year also sees the release of Mirror, Mirror: The Untold Adventures of Snow White, starring Julia Roberts. I think it was a smart move to concentrate on the Evil Queen, who was always going to be the most fascinating character. Perhaps trailers focusing on Kristen Stewart’s Snow White and Chris Hemsworth’s Huntsman will also be released in due course. Snow White and The Huntsman will be released in the UK on 1st June 2012.