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The Huntsman: Winter's War
狩猎者: 凛冬之战

Opening Date
14 Apr 2016
Rating
PG13 Violence
暴力画面
Runtime
114 mins
Language
English with Chinese subtitles
Genre
Action, Adventure, Drama
Director
Cedric Nicolas-Troyan
Cast
Emily Blunt, Jessica Chastain, Charlize Theron, Chris Hemsworth
Synopsis
The fantastical world of Snow White and the Huntsman expands to reveal how the fates of The Huntsman Eric and Queen Ravenna are deeply and dangerously intertwined.

Long before the evil Queen Ravenna was thought vanquished by Snow White’s blade, she watched silently as her sister, Freya, suffered a heartbreaking betrayal and fled their kingdom. With Freya’s ability to freeze any enemy, the young ice queen has spent decades in a remote wintry palace raising a legion of deadly huntsmen—including Eric and warrior Sara —only to find that her prized two defied her one demand: Forever harden your hearts to love.

When Freya learns of her sister’s demise, she summons her remaining soldiers to bring the Magic Mirror home to the only sorceress left who can harness its power. But once she discovers Ravenna can be resurrected from its golden depths, the wicked sisters threaten this enchanted land with twice the darkest force it’s ever seen.

Now, their amassing army shall prove undefeatable…unless the banished huntsmen who broke their queen’s cardinal rule can fight their way back to one another 
Reviews
By Yun-Huei  14 Apr 2016
However, the visual beauty of Winter’s War isn’t quite enough to overcome its flaws in character development and storytelling, and there’s certainly nothing on show here that will legitimize a third film in this already stretched-thin franchise.
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While Snow White and the Huntsman was a somewhat interesting twist on the classic tale of Snow White, it didn’t really need a sequel or a prequel – but with near $400 million in global box office takings, it was perhaps inevitable that The Huntsman: Winter’s War was green-lit.

Unfortunately, it seems almost all the life had been sucked out of the franchise with this second film, and even though the door remains open for yet another sequel, it would certainly take a huge leap of faith for most audience members to revisit this world for a third time. 
Strangely, the decision was made to excise Snow White’s presence out from Winter’s War, leading to some rather convoluted storytelling where the film starts several decades prior to the time frame of Snow White and the Huntsman, then awkwardly lurches forward to “seven years later” after what had transpired in the first film. The writers seem to assume that everyone has seen (and remembers) the first film’s plot, however unlikely that might be, and there will be moments in Winter’s War that will not make a lot of sense if one is unacquainted with the previous film.

That Chris Hemsworth is a pretty face (and body) without too much thespian talent has been quite established in his body of work, but in Winter’s War he is particularly unspectacular, taking a back seat in dramatic duties to all the leading women (even the annoying dwarves seem to do better), and absolutely lacking in any romantic chemistry with Jessica Chastain. Chastain herself fares a little better, given a Tauriel-esque character with slightly more depth than Hemsworth’s. Charlize Theron hams it up and thus steals the spotlight from anyone sharing scenes with her, but the film’s true saving grace is Emily Blunt, who chooses not to overact but instead turns Freya into a believably vulnerable and emotionally fragile character, even as she inches ever closer to Ravenna’s darkness. If not for Blunt’s participation, Winter’s War would probably have been much less watchable.

Nicolas Cedric-Troyan is helming his first feature film here, stepping up from visual effects director in Snow White and the Huntsman, and his mastery in visual effects is indeed very clear. The entire film is saturated in visual effects, and some of them are indeed extremely impressive, none more so than the final showdown between the Huntsmen and the two Queens.

The costume design by Colleen Atwood is also top notch, especially the various gowns worn by Blunt and Theron. However, the visual beauty of Winter’s War isn’t quite enough to overcome its flaws in character development and storytelling, and there’s certainly nothing on show here that will legitimize a third film in this already stretched-thin franchise.
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