Snow White (Cannon Movie Tales, 1987)

“Dame Diana Rigg (TV’s “The Avengers”), Billy Barty (“Willow”) and Sarah Patterson (“The Company of Wolves”) as Snow White star in this feature-length, live-action, musical version of the classic fairy tale by the Brothers Grimm”

– Reid Taylor, IMDB.

Snow White is brought to us by Cannon Films as part of their Cannon Movie Tales series. It features Nicola Stapleton and Sarah Patterson as Snow White, and Diana Rigg as the Evil Queen. Diana Rigg has recently appeared as Olenna Tyrell in HBO’s Game of Thrones. Billy Barty also appears as one of the seven dwarves. Bill Barty appeared as the titular character in the previous Cannon Movie Tales film, Rumpelstiltskin. According to the IMDB trivia, used VHS copies of the film were at one point selling for $100 on eBay. This eventually led to MGM re-releasing the film on DVD. Also according to IMDB trivia, the snow in the film is a mix of falling paper and dead sea salt. 

Some thoughts from me (Potential spoilers below)…
I found this one to be super charming, but it’s hard to quantify what that means for the purposes of this blog post. I would compare this movie to something like Jewel Kingdom: The Ruby Princess Runs Away, where the movie just gives me a good feeling when watching it. I think because both movies seem to be an earnest effort to create something entertaining for younger views. That earnestness translates into some hard to define quality that you can kinda sense while you’re watching it.

Some quantifiable things that make this movie interesting are the set pieces. Every set in this film feels like it had a great deal of thought put into it. In particular, I really enjoy the Evil Queen’s mirror room. It would’ve been easy to make it a generically spooky room, something dark and brooding. Instead, in Snow White the Evil Queen’s room is predominantly blue and white, with bright lights and human faced statues that come to life. It’s a wonderful mix of eerie and sterile that make for a unique and memorable scene.

There is one speed-bump in the good feelings ride that is this movie: One of the disguises the Evil Queen uses to trick Snow White is a very dated Gesha-ish impersonation. The Evil Queen even affects a fake accent during the scene. It’s definitely bit cringe inducing to watch nowadays.

I say, definitely check this one out. Every so often it’s nice to have a film that has some good qualities to it. It can be a lot of fun to discuss a bad film, but it can sometimes be just as fun to discuss a film that takes you by surprise with how charming it actually is. 


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