'Puzzle' is Well Made, but a Few Pieces are Missing

Based on the film Rompecabezas, Puzzle is one of those little-known independent films that sneaks into theaters with little to no fanfare, although the fact that it is being promoted “from the producer of Little Miss Sunshine” should help it get noticed somewhat. Puzzle is a quiet, little film about a woman who discovers that jigsaw puzzles are the key to changing her life. While the subject matter doesn’t sound all that exciting, the film really isn’t about puzzles but instead about one finding their voice, or so it appears. It’s also a message film that has its own agenda expecting the audience to agree with the choices of the main character and applaud her “brave” behavior. Frankly, it just feels manipulative.

Directed by Marc Turtletaub, Puzzle’s most impactful scene comes within the first few minutes. We see Agnes (Kelly MacDonald) cleaning up the house and they decorating it for a birthday party. Then we see her serving appetizers while being ignored by the guests. …

Snow White: Which Version Will be the Fairest of Them All?

Written in 1812, the Brothers Grimm’s fairy tale Snow White is not only one of the most well-known stories of all time, it is also one the best examples of good vs. evil. Everything about Snow White suggests purity. Everything about the queen suggests evil. (It doesn’t help that in most cases she is referred to as the “evil queen.”)

This year, at least three different movie production companies are coming up with three new versions of the classic tale and all are competing to be the fairest version of them all.

Copyright Vision Films
“Snow White: A Deadly Summer”
This one somehow slipped under the radar. It is scheduled to be released straight onto DVD, Digital Dowload and OnDemand on March 20, 2012, but is the least known of the three. It is also said to be the least “Snow Whitiest” of the three. In this story, a troubled teenage age Snow (Shanley Caswell – whoever that is) is caught in a web of lies and deceit when her stepmother (Maureen McCormick – yes – the original Marsha Brady) and father (Eric Roberts – and brother to Julia) send her to a discipline camp. This one looks dreadful and possibly shot on someone’s cell phone.

(Left to right.) Julia Roberts and Lily Collins star
 in Relativity Media's Mirror Mirror. 
Photo Credit:Jan Thijs.© 2012 Relativity Media.All Rights Reserved. 
“Mirror Mirror”
This is the one I am most excited to see. “Mirror Mirror” stars Lily Collins (“The Blind Side”) as Snow, Julia Roberts as the queen, Arnie Hammer, Nathan Land and Sean Bean. The studio, Relativity Media, just released a hilarious teaser video on YouTube this weekend about the Evil Queen surfing the web to find the best way to win over the handsome Prince and get rid of the beautiful Snow White. “Mirror Mirror” arrives in theaters on March 30, 2012 and in my humble opinion, looks like the frontrunner. I can’t wait to see Ms. Roberts in an evil role.

Copyright Universal Studios
“Snow White and the Huntsman”
Next is “Snow White and the Huntsman” which has received a lot of buzz and looks like it will less traditional and more serious in tone. The Universal Studios production is from Joe Roth, the producer of the recent “Alice in Wonderland” movie. In fact, the promotional materials like incredible similar to “Alice.” This one stars “Twilight’s” Kristen Stewart, who is popular but not known for her great acting. This time the queen will be played by Charlize Theron and Chris Hemsworth (“Thor”) will play the Huntsman. Sam Clafin also joins the cast. This action/adventure is scheduled for release on June, 2012.

So – which one do you think will win for fairest version of them all?


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