This movie is based somewhat more authentically on the Grimm Brothers' story of a young woman who is unliked by her stepmother. When young Lillian's mother dies during childbirth, her father soon remarries the well-intentioned Lady Claudia. However, Claudia's heart is ruled not by her husband, but by an evil mirror with the power to make Claudia Queen over all living things - until they are dead. A failed attempt to murder young Lillian leaves her wandering lost in a deep dark forest where she comes across seven ruffian gold miners. This movie takes place at the time of the Crusades, and depicts the attitudes of the wealthy and the peasant classes toward each other. Written by
BOB STEBBINS <email@example.com>
This film was originally slated for theatrical release but wound up debuting on Showtime in the U.S. See more »
The snake that frightens Lilli in the forest is a Boa Constrictor, not native to Europe. See more »
[Will is having a nightmare]
He dreams of fire. They tied him to a stake, then burned his family while he watched. And then they placed a red-hot cross of iron across his face, because he would not repent.
What was his crime?
He would not fight for their cause.
Who were they?
Crusaders for the Church. Men of God.
My face, it frightens you?
Scares me, too.
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Although I liked Disney's version of the Snow White tale (and still keep it as the classic example of fairy-tale screen- handling), still I was positively struck with this adaptation. Now here's the version no-one would have dreamed of ever seeing. The all-innocent victimised princess has been turned into a proud little brat who despises her step-mother from the very first time she sees her; the mean, scheming, mirror-gazing step-mother was changed into a lady doing her best to be accepted by her husband's intolerant daughter - only after miscarrying her son does she turn into the stereotype of evil; the adorable seven little dwarfs were metamorphosized into seven miners, some of whom really hate the girl. Best of all the Prince charming has been erased and the silly "Mirror mirror on the wall, who's the fairest of them all?" likewise. Anyway the film is a masterpiece from beginning to end - the highlights being the spells cast by the maddened step-mother. Being a gothic horror movie, it still has some spurts of really dark humour, such as Claudia saying, "Mmmm... Delicious!" when eating the supposedly cooked Lilly; and "I have brought someone to keep you company" (to the crucifix). The on-location shooting is very adequate and the superb performances from everyone make this a movie worth watching and appreciating.
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