You would think that after the success of 2011’s The Artist, people would have been falling over each other to try and repeat its successful formula of eager-to-please silent-film pastiche; fortunately that hasn’t happened. Pablo Berger’s Blancanieves is a good example of a film that hearkens back to an older style without turning it into a one-note gag.
The gorgeous and impassioned Blancanieves (Spain’s entry for foreign-film Oscar) is playing now in (very) limited release. My full review is at Film Racket; here’s part of it:
Pablo Berger’s Blancanieves takes the Snow White story first popularized by the brothers Grimm and still best known from the 1937 animated Disney film, strips it of its medieval Germanic forest setting, and recasts it as a florid, theatrical, black-and-white silent melodrama set in 1920s Spain. But even though the unemployed and gullible waif Snow White is now a tomboyish girl named Carmen who dreams of being a great bullfighter like her father, Berger’s film is still closer to the original tale’s spirit than last year’s dreadful action throwaway Snow White and the Huntsman…
You can watch the trailer here: