Snow White and the Huntsman (12A)

Rupert Sanders, 127mins. Starring: Kristen Stewart, Chris Hemsworth, Charlize Theron

An epic exercise in kitsch, this fantasy adventure takes the Snow White fairly tale and combines it with lashings of Arthurian swordplay, Narnia-like mysticism and Highlander-style preposterousness.

It's an indigestible mix overall even if debut director Sanders (a whizz kid from the advertising world) throws in plenty of spectacular set-pieces.

There's some sterling character work too from the dwarves, among them Ray Winstone as the misanthropic, tufty-headed Gort, who snarls out his lines as if he is offering "in play" betting odds on Snow White toppling the evil Ravenna (Charlize Theron as a cross between Countess Bathory and Cruella de Vil).

The impressive production and costume design and often nifty special effects surely deserved a script that made marginally more sense.

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