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Jun 27 2012

Cinema: The Costumes Of Snow White & The Huntsman

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When it comes to fashionable movies I know everyone is waiting for The Great Gatsby at the end of the year but last week I finally went to see Snow White & The Huntsman and I was blown away by the costumes from Colleen Atwood, the costume designer behind Chicago, Alice in Wonderland, and Memoirs of a Geisha.

For most I am sure Kristen Stewart and Charlize Theron are enough of a pull to see this film, but I have to admit with it coming soon after Julia Roberts’ Mirror Mirror I was a little dubious about seeing another version of this fairytale. It did however surprise me, there is a darkness to the story that is played out perfectly by Charlize as the sexy-yet-evil queen, who has the most spectacular of wardrobes, and even Kristen as Snow White was impressive, rather less of a princess and more of a Joan of Arc character, which I think is probably easier for her to pull off. With the evil queen and the heroine sorted, the story just needed a hunky protector in the form of Chris Hemsworth, great eye candy, and then you have the very funny but badass dwarfs, who kind of had a touch of Narnia-meets-Games of Thrones about them.

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Don’t get me wrong this film is so geared to the teen market, why else would they cast Kristen, but what I took away most was the spectacular creations from Colleen Atwood. Of course all eyes are on Charlize as Ravenna, the sorceress haute-couture queen who has a fear of her mortality, which is played out perfectly in her costumes as they have a lot of death about in the detailing from the use of bones, beetle wings, and rooster feathers – kind of reflective of her own rotting mortality during the film and they looked spectacular on the big screen.

Of course her crown is important, it is iconic, and I love that even though the film is completely different from the Disney version, the pointy structure of the crown is inspired by the animated version, plus it feels a little Roman as well to me and I love the addition of the jewels.

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The most spectacular of her gowns has to be her wedding dress, with its medieval-meets-couture runway vibe. It truly is a statement gown with its architectural shoulders that seem to be made from bones, to the embroidered and lace gown that kind of made me think of peeling skin, and fits perfectly into the evil queen’s vanity.

I also have to quickly gush about all the jewellery, everything from the earrings to the crowns, and the very cool talon-like finger-caps, the detail of each look is incredible, even more so when you realise that every piece, some 2,000 costumes were all custom-made – now that is a huge job.

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Of course it wouldn’t be right to talk about the costumes of Snow White and not include the princess herself played by Kristen. I actually loved what Snow White was wearing it was more rock-chick than Disney princess, which worked better with the dark and action-packed script. There is still a regal look to her outfit, even though she has been held captive in the tower, I love the puff sleeves and the metal detailing around the corset.

Snow White doesn’t get as many costume changes as the evil queen so she is in this look for most of the film so to adapt to her surroundings and the action, the Huntsman cuts of part of her dress and makes it into a tunic over leather trousers – very Joan of Arc, which continues when she heads into battle in her custom-made sculpted armour.

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Seriously I loved this film, granted we all know the story but this is action-packed and you won’t be disappointed. If you just see it for the costumes trust me it is worth it, I could seriously go on, and on about the wonderful work of Colleen Atwood I love every outfit that graced the screen. When researching the costumes I came across this fab video of the Academy award-winning costume designer discussing creating the costumes, it is really insightful and actually makes me want to see the film again!!!

[Pics: Universal Pictures/Snow White & The Huntsman]
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