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Film: Snow White & the Huntsman

Snow White and the Huntsman is an action fantasy film based on the Snow White fairytale. It stars Kristen Stewart as Snow White herself, with Chris Hemsworth as the Huntsman, and Charlize Theron as the Queen (named Ravenna). It was released in 2012, the same year as another Snow White retelling, Mirror, Mirror. Where that film recasts the story as a more light-hearted adventure, this is a darker telling.

In a land ruled by tyranny, the vain and selfish Queen Ravenna learns that her stepdaughter, Snow White, is destined to surpass her not only as the "Fairest One of All" but also as the kingdom's future ruler. But then the Queen learns from her Magic Mirror that the only way to remain in power is to consume Snow White's heart and achieve immortality. Snow White escapes into the Dark Forest and Ravenna recruits the Huntsman Eric to find and kill Snow White. Eric, however, takes pity on the young princess and teaches Snow White the art of war. Now, with the aid of eight dwarves (played by among others Ian McShane, Ray Winstone, Nick Frost and [in his final film] Bob Hoskins) and the duke's son William (Sam Claflin), Snow White begins a rebellion to bring down her stepmother once and for all.

Snow White and the Huntsman exhibits the following tropes:

  • Absurdly Spacious Sewer: Averted when the dwarfs are sneaking in through the sewers.
    "We move as one. (get stuck) After you."
  • Acquired Situational Narcissism: Ravenna. Who wouldn't be, knowing that they were Fairest of Them All?
  • Action Dress Rip: The Huntsman rips Snow White's dress so she can move through the forest easily.
  • Action Girl: Snow White.
  • Adaptational Badass: Snow White. Also the Huntsman, and William, who is closest in the movie to the traditional prince role.
  • Adaptation Expansion
  • After-Action Patchup: The Huntsman gets a gash below his collarbone after fighting the troll. A woman from the village he and Snow White stay the night at patches him up and we get a shot of Chris Hemsworth's abs.
  • The Ageless: Ravenna has apparently "lived twenty lives", but still appears to be relatively young-looking. As does her brother.
  • The Alcoholic: The Huntsman takes a swig before doing anything, including teaching a young girl to use pointy objects, giving romantic advice, giving a heartfelt speech...
  • All Trolls Are Different: This one doesn't live under a bridge, he is the bridge.
  • Arc Symbol: The three drops of blood.
  • An Axe to Grind: A large axe is the Huntsman's weapon of choice. The dwarves fight with much smaller pickaxes.
  • Animal Motifs: Creepy Ravens for Ravenna, magpies for Snow White.
  • Annoying Arrows: Averted. Sadly.
  • Armor Is Useless: Averted. For example, Snow White's plate armour is visibly tarnished in many shots, showing that it actually stopped sword blows.
  • Arrow Catch: William does this trick, and then fires it back along with one of his own to demonstrate his archery skill.
  • Arrows on Fire: Snow White awakens to one landing in near her head, and quickly realizes that Finn and his soldiers have tracked her down, and are setting fire to the village buildings. William also uses these in his introduction as an adult, to set fire to tinder he's thoughtfully strewn in the path of a convoy that gets ambushed.
  • Ascended Extra: The Huntsman's role is much larger and more important than in the original fairy tale.
  • Attempted Rape: Finn tries to do this to Snow White in prison while she's lying on her bed. However, she strikes his face with a nail.
  • Authority Equals Asskicking: Ravenna completely trashes Snow White in their battle, only being defeated by Bond Villain Stupidity
  • Awesome Moment of Crowning: Snow White's coronation.
  • Back from the Dead
  • Back-to-Back Badasses: William and the Huntsman against an evil, magical flock of ravens.
  • Badass: The Huntsman takes on several soldiers at once in defence of Snow White. The dwarves also kick-ass.
  • Badass Boast: "I will give this wretched world the Queen it deserves."
  • Badass Princess: Snow White and Ravenna.
  • Badass in Distress: The Huntsman during his battle with the troll.
  • Bambification: Averted with the White Hart, who looks more regal and majestic than cutesy.
  • Beauty Equals Goodness: Played straight with Snow White, but inverted with Queen Ravenna, who was the Fairest of Them All and evil.
  • Beauty Is Never Tarnished: Deliberately averted by the village of women. They all gave themselves facial scars so that Ravenna doesn't prey on them with her life-stealing magics. Snow White herself spends a good portion of the movie covered in dirt and grime, but it isn't treated as if it detracted from her beauty.
    • Even though he's covered in grunge, the Huntsman is still an insanely attractive fellow throughout the film.
  • Betty and Veronica: Though the Love Triangle is only hinted at, it's clear that devoted childhood friend William is the Betty while initially reluctantly helpful, alcoholic older man Eric is the Veronica to Snow White.
  • Big Bad: Queen Ravenna.
  • Big Fancy Castle
  • Big "NO!": Used twice. Once by Snow White when the troll is about to kill the Huntsman, and once by the Huntsman when Ravenna is about to kill Snow White after poisoning her with an apple.
  • Bitch in Sheep's Clothing: Ravenna first appears to the King as a fragile yet beautiful prisoner of war, and once she later gets engaged to the King, she is cordial to the young Snow White. However, the night of their wedding Ravenna murders the King, imprisons Snow White, and usurps the kingdom.
  • Black Widow: Ravenna marries the king and kills him on their wedding night. She claims to have done this several times before.
  • Blind Seer: Muir, the lead dwarf.
  • Blondes are Evil/Blond Guys Are Evil: Queen Ravenna and her brother Finn. Ravenna deliberately plays up Hair of Gold, Heart of Gold when first introduced, though.
  • Blood Magic:
    • This is part of how Snow White was conceived: her mother pricks her finger on a rose, bleeds into the snow, and then wishes for a daughter with rose-red lips and snow-white skin.
    • This is also how Ravenna originally obtained immortality and her sorceress powers. During the destruction of her childhood village, her mother chants an incantation and performs a rite involving pricking young Ravenna's finger and bleeding it into a bowl of milk. Her mother hoped Ravenna's new powers could avenge the village's destruction.
  • Book Ends: Snow White escapes from her prison by striking Finn in the face with a nail when he molests her. Snow White's journey ends when she performs a similar attack on Finn's sister Ravenna: Snow White abruptly stabs her in the stomach while Ravenna is focused on Hannibal Lecturing her.
    • Both the beginning and end of the film feature a crowning ceremony.
  • Boring Return Journey: Justified in that when Snow White was leaving the castle, she was alone or with a small number of companions and she came back with an army, making it much easier to go where she wanted in safety.
  • Braids of Action: Snow White puts her long hair in a braid when she leads the Resistance against the Queen's kingdom.
  • Brave Scot: The Huntsman. Sort of.
  • Break the Haughty: Ravenna. Her title as Fairest of Them All is taken from her by Snow White, who also causes her powers to wane. Snow White, her salvation, escapes and the man she hires to catch her decides to help her instead. Her brother, the only person she loves is killed. She fails to take Snow White's heart after poisoning her with the apple. And finally, she is stabbed to death by one fairer than herself.
  • Breast Plate: Averted. Snow White is shown wearing regular plate armor.
  • Brother-Sister Incest: See incest subtext below.
  • Brooding Boy, Gentle Girl: The Huntsman and Snow White, respectively.
  • Bruiser with a Soft Center: The Huntsman, whose speech prior to kissing Snow White awake touched everyone.
  • The Caligula: Ravenna. Also her possible relationship with her brother mirrors ideas about the original Caligula, see Incest Subtext below.
  • Cape Swish: Ravenna turns into a flock of ravens upon doing this.
  • Cast from Lifespan: Almost. Using dark sorcery causes Ravenna to age; however, she can restore her youth and vigour by feeding upon other girls' beauty.
  • Catch and Return: On hearing that Snow White is in The Lost Woods, William decides that the quickest way to find her is to hook up with Finn's men who are also searching for her, by posing as a mercenary. As Finn rides through a village, he's annoyed to find a bow-holding William In the Hood, blocking his path.
    William: Do you need a bowman?
    Finn: I have a bowman. (to his bowman) Kill him.
    (The bowman fires at William, who does an Arrow Catch, then fires it back along with one of his own into Finn's bowman)
    William: I said, do you need a bowman?
  • Chekhov's Skill: Snow White utilizes the one combat skill we witness her learning during the final battle. Also Chekhov's Gun: she had that knife in her boot for almost the entire movie, but only used it at the end.
  • Chewing the Scenery: Charlize Theron really gets all the ham out of her system when Queen Ravenna demands that Snow White be brought to her after her initial escape.
  • The Chosen One: Snow White.
  • Converse with the Unconscious: The Huntsman tells a comatose Snow White of how she reminds him of his former wife, and how she's made him the man he once was.
  • Cool Crown: Ravenna's crown, complete with spikes. Snow White's crown in the last scene.
  • Costume Porn: Queen Ravenna's many outfits.
  • Covered in Mud: The Huntsman when we are first introduced to him.
  • Crapsack World: It was a pretty swell place to live. Then Ravenna came along.
  • Creepy Ravens: The evil queen's theme, including her name, revolves around ravens. She can even turn into a flock of them.
  • Creepy Step-Uncle: Finn likes to watch Snow when she's trapped in the castle.
  • Cry for the Devil: Ravenna, who was taken from her mother by her homeland's king.
  • Crystal Dragon Jesus: Played with. There is a lot of overt and undisguised Christian imagery in the movie, but in the end, the bishop that crowns Snow White does it not in the name of God (as it would have been in a real-world medieval setting), but "in the name of everything good in the land".
    • Though given that the land also features benevolent fairies that probably aren't Christians it may simply be that the ceremony is designed to cover all bases.
    • At the very beginning of the movie, Snow White recites the Lord's prayer.
      • All of this actually points to an interesting Real Life phenomenon in which Pagan (i.e. non-Christian) theologies would 'hide' in Christian rituals (which is part of why, should the legends be believed, Saint Brigid even exists—she was originally a goddess of Ireland). Taking this into account, it may be that the very obvious magic in this world means that Christianity is a bit subtler.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: Interestingly, the Huntsman gets his butt kicked three ways from Sunday in his battle debut. To be fair, however, the Huntsman is shown to be completely hammered while this happens.
    • Snow White vs. Ravenna in the climax. Snow White couldn't lay a finger on her until she stopped to gloat.
  • Darker and Edgier/Grimmification: Exaggerated. The film is even darker than most of non-bowdlerized Grimm fairy tales.
  • Dark Fantasy: Downplayed, but still present.
  • Dark World: Under Ravenna's rule, the land suffers and the people starve.
  • Deadpan Snarker:
    • The Huntsman definitely has his moments.
    • A couple of the dwarves are also pretty snarky too.
    • Also Ravenna.
    Ravenna: How is it an innocent young girl makes a fool of my brother? Armed only with a nail. If she'd had a sword she'd have taken my kingdom.
  • Death Glare: The Queen does this frequently.
  • Deceased Parents Are the Best: Snow White's parents both die a few minutes into the film.
  • Declaration of Protection: Twice. Once from William, after he learns Snow White is still alive. Then later, from Eric once he learns of Snow White's identity and gets his head together.
  • Derailing Love Interests: Averted with class. Both love interests are flawed but both are good, worthy men that even fight in sync to protect and support their future queen.
  • Did You Actually Believe?: That Ravenna would bring back your wife, Huntsman?
  • Didn't See That Coming: Many people did not expect the Huntsman to be the one to kiss Snow White awake; it was assumed that since William's character was the closest to a "prince" that he would fulfill that role.
  • Died in Your Arms Tonight:
    • Gus the dwarf dies in Snow White's arms after protecting her from being shot with an arrow.
    • Subverted with Snow White. She "dies" in William's arms but the Huntsman's kiss revives her later.
  • Diegetic Switch: When one of the eight dwarves is killed (what - there was one too many?) another dwarf sings at his funeral. Cut to Scenery Gorn as the song "Gone" is continued by Ioanna Gika as our heroes continue on their quest.
  • Distracted by the Sexy: The king, when he meets Ravenna. He's so entranced by her that he forgets his grief over his wife and resolves to marry her the next day. Ultimately played for drama.
    • Although, it's probably not that he FORGOT entirely to grieve for his wife; he probably wanted something or someone to console him and ease the pain, and frankly a hot chick does that task all too well.
  • Does Not Like Men: Queen Ravenna. With the exception of her brother Finn. Probably justified.
    Ravenna: I was ruined by a king like you once. I replaced his queen, an old woman. And in time, I too would have been replaced. Men use women. They ruin us. And when they are finished with us, they toss us to the dogs like scraps.
  • Does Not Like Shoes: Ravenna is barefoot for most of the movie.
  • Doomed by Canon: When the dwarves are introduced, there's eight of them. Given that the story typically features seven, it's pretty easy to guess that one will bite it at some point.
  • Don't Go in the Woods: The Dark Forest will kill you. It's just a matter of when. Even Ravenna won't go in there.
    Ravenna: One of my prisoners has escaped there.
    Huntsman: Well then he's dead.
    Ravenna: She.
    Huntsman: She is certainly dead.
  • The Drag-Along: The Huntsman. A several stages of the story, he wants no part.
  • The Dragon: Finn. A perfect example of a Dragon that's more evil than the Big Bad.
  • Dude, She's Like in a Coma: Snow White, after taking a bite from Ravenna's poisoned apple. The Huntsman unknowingly kisses her awake.
  • The Dung Ages: Save Ravenna (who takes milk baths) and her brother Finn, everyone is covered in grunge.
  • Easily Forgiven: Snow White forgives William for leaving her at the castle, under the grounds that they were children at the time. This adds a depth to her anger after the Huntsman, an adult who is capable of navigating the woods where death is 99.9% certain—while drunk—abandons her in the women's village.
  • Elite Mooks: Humanoid monsters made from fragments of broken glass.
  • Emotional Bruiser: The Huntsman, who initially hides behind a mask of cynicism, becomes this thanks to Character Development.
  • Even Evil Has Loved Ones: Ravenna and Finn genuinely care about each other, and she's absolutely devasted when he dies.
  • Everyone Calls Him Barkeep: The Huntsman. Even the credits don't list his real name (it's "Eric", apparently)note .
  • Everything Is Better With Princesses: It's still a fairy tale after all.
  • Evil Albino: Finn is pale enough to qualify.
  • Evil Laugh: The Queen in many of the promos. One that's very bitter.
  • Evil Matriarch: The Queen is technically Snow's stepmother after all.
  • Evil Is Petty: Finn comes across as this when William joins his group. He orders one of his group to shoot William for no apparent reason.
  • Evil Sorceress: The Queen.
  • Faceless Goons: The queen's warriors, whether they're magically conjured glass monsters or normal humans with dark helmets covering their faces, or both such as the Dark Army in the beginning.
  • Failure Knight: The Huntsman.
  • The Fair Folk: Hinted at but ultimately subverted. The fairies are a little creepy, clearly powerful and make the Dwarves nervous but are actually benevolent.
  • Fairest of Them All: Of course! This is the Trope Namer's tale.
  • Fairy Tale: A Darker and Edgier take on the Brothers Grimm fairy tale "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs".
  • Fallen Princess: Snow White, after Ravenna takes over.
  • Family-Unfriendly Death: Finn is impaled on a jagged tree stump by the Huntsman. It's not pretty, but it's very, very satisfying to see this total monster get what he deserves.
  • Fanservice: Naturally comes with having extremely attractive actors as the main leads.
    • Ravenna has her breasts emphasized early on in the film in her wedding scene, and a couple of her dresses emphasize her back.
    • Chris Hemsworth has a practically-shirtless scene, the purpose for which is pretty unnecessary and quite clearly just an excuse to show off his abs.
    • Snow's grey and brown dress has a habit of slipping down her shoulders.
  • Faux Affably Evil: Ravenna is polite and courteous towards Snow White when they first meet. It doesn't last long.
  • Feather Motif: Ravenna is strongly associated with crows, to the point of often having black feathers, symbolizing evil, on her dresses.
  • The Film of the Book: Based off the original "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs" fairy tale.
  • Fisher King: When Snow White's father dies and Ravenna takes over, the land withers. After Snow White is crowned, the land starts to return to normal.
  • Fisher Kingdom: When the land withers, the kingdom's population collapses into poverty and despair.
  • Foil: Snow White vs. Ravenna, and the Huntsman vs. William.
  • Fractured Fairy Tale: The film follows the general premise of the fairy tale, but twists its element in different ways.
  • Freudian Excuse: Ravenna's behavior is explained through a childhood flashback and the way a previous king treated her.
  • Friend to All Living Things/All-Loving Hero: Snow White. As a child, Snow White nursed a baby magpie back to health from a broken wing; when she escapes, magpies guide her through the sewers and to a White Stallion. When confronted by a hostile giant troll, Snow White screams at and stares at it sympathetically to defuse the situation. The Sanctuary's deity, The White Hart, which hadn't shown itself to other mortals, appears for her and grants Snow White its blessing. And even towards Queen Ravenna, Snow White feels sorrow rather than hatred and rage towards her for her actions.
  • From Nobody to Nightmare: Ravenna used to be a normal young girl who lived in an Arctic village. Now she is a powerful immortal sorceress determined to lay waste to kingdoms for the sole sake of maintaining her youth and powers.
  • Gender Bender: The Queen transforms into William to trick Snow into eating the apple.
  • Genius Bruiser: Ravenna is a schemer who leaves most of the fighting to her subordinates, but she can certainly look after herself.
  • Girl In the Iron Prison/Girl in the Tower: Once Ravenna usurps the kingdom, she locks Snow White away in a prison for several years instead of killing her immediately.
  • Get Out: After the Queen's mooks drop off her magic mirror.
  • God Save Us from the Queen!: Queen Ravenna seems to be a near-classic evil queen.
  • The Good King: Snow White's father is said to have been this.
  • Good Parents/Deceased Parents Are the Best: Snow White's parents were good and loving parents, and die minutes into the movie.
  • The Guards Must Be Crazy: The castle guards completely miss seven dwarves who undoubtedly reek of sewerage sneaking behind their backs.
  • Guttural Growler: The Huntsman.
  • Guys Smash, Girls Shoot: Inverted with William (who fights almost exclusively with bow and arrow) and Snow White (using a sword and shield in the climactic battle).
  • Hands-On Approach: An early Ship Tease moment is when Eric hands Snow White back her knife, then shows her how to use it.
  • Happily Ever After: Subverted. The ending is more bittersweet than happy.
  • Heartbroken Badass: Twice, sort of. Eric's wife died prior to the start of the story, and given the state he's in when the audience is first introduced to him, her death still badly haunts him. Then again, when Snow White falls into her death/coma. He tells the dead/unconscious Snow White that she had the same kind of strength and inspired similar feelings of worth in him that his wife did, and that they both deserved better.
  • Held Gaze: Snow White and William upon seeing each other for the first time since they were kids.
    • At the end of the movie between Snow White and the Huntsman, who also do this a couple of other times throughout the movie.
    • Ravenna and Snow White, after Snow White stabs her.
  • Helmets Are Hardly Heroic: Snow White rides into battle in full armour, but no helmet. In a battle where they are storming a castle and getting a lot of things dropped, poured and thrown on them. Actually that might qualify as Fridge Logic, Snow White is the leader and symbol of the rebellion, so she has to be recognizable to give hope to her fellow rebels and the oppressed population. Helmeted fighters tend to be Faceless Goons, and Snow White is a princess. But maybe they could have gotten a gold plated helmet for her that sort of looked like a crown.
  • Heroes Prefer Swords: Snow White is just about the only notable character who uses a sword. Everyone else uses axes, bows, daggers, a cane, and so forth. The only exception is her father, the King.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Gus takes an arrow for Snow White.
  • High Collar of Doom: Ravenna has a particularly impressive cape featuring a feathered high collar.
  • The High Queen: Snow White's mother. Snow White herself becomes one in the ending.
  • Holding Hands: Snow White and the Huntsman do this more times than you'd expect as they are running away from Finn and his men.
  • Hope Sprouts Eternal: Snow White's mother found a rose growing in the middle of a harsh winter, and prayed that she'd have a daughter with the strength and beauty of that rose. Later Queen Ravenna finds a flower growing in the desolate Dark Forrest, implied to have grown as a result of Snow White's passing. She makes a point of crushing it.
  • Hot Witch: Ravenna.
  • Hunk: Chris Hemsworth as the Huntsman.
  • Hurting Hero: The Huntsman, a war hero and a widower, turns to alcohol to ease his pain.
  • Ice Queen: Queen Ravenna. As the Big Bad, she never gets defrosted.
  • Idiot Ball: The only times Ravenna and Finn let go of it seems to be when they pass it to the other. Examples include Finn revealing to the Huntsman that Ravenna lied about bringing his wife Back from the Dead before securing Snow White and later that he raped and killed the Huntsman's wife. Ravenna tells Snow White exactly how to kill her. And when the heroes are stuck right outside Ravenna's castle, the guards wait until the gate is opened to pour boiling oil on the heroes and set it ablaze.
  • Impaled with Extreme Prejudice: The Huntsman impales Finn on a tree.
  • Improbable Antidote: True Love's Kiss is needed to wake Snow White from her comatose state, although this is never mentioned in the film.
    • If not in the film, where IS mentioned that it is needed? It's not in the Grimms' fairy tale either. Is it in some additional material to the movie?
      • It comes from Disney's version of Snow White originally, but the concept has been copied and used in so many places ever since that people now assume it to be part of the original story and expect it in every version made.
    • The simple answer is that they didn't know it would wake her up; William and Eric both kiss a comatose Snow White as a Last Kiss when they think she's lost to them.
  • Incest Subtext: Queen Ravenna's relationship with her brother Finn flirts with incest several times. Especially when Ravenna bathes in front of him and, later, he gives her a not-so-brotherly kiss on the shoulder. She repeatedly reminds him that he vowed to protect her. And there's the rather... charged scene where they exchange "I gave you everything"s.
  • Informed Attractiveness: Snow White is played by Kristen Stewart, who isn't ugly by any stretch of the imagination. Still, it's a little hard to swallow her as Fairest of Them All against Charlize Theron, even given that some of it's regarding inner beauty in the film (though that in itself comes off as an Informed Attribute, because Ravenna has no inner beauty).
  • Informed Attribute: Snow White is supposed to be so loving, compassionate and full of life that people fall in love with her only by looking at her. Characters mention it over and over again. Yet she never displays a greater amount of emotion or caring than several other characters of the film or even less then them.
  • Instant Expert: Snow White knows how to ride a horse and fight with sword and shield, despite never having had an opportunity to develop those skills, what with being locked in a tower for years.
  • Instant Waking Skills: In the scene where Finn's army invades the village Snow White is taking refuge at, a flaming arrow lands near Snow White whilst she is sleeping and she wakes instantly, and is out of bed in mere seconds.
  • Jeanne d'Archétype: Snow White is given the Joan of Arc treatment in many ways. She acts as a symbol of resistance to a foreign usurper, fights in plate armour, and is considered something of a living saint.
  • Just in Time: The Huntsman, William and the Dwarves arrive just in time to stop Ravenna from cutting out Snow White's heart.
  • Karmic Death: Finn was killed by the husband of one of the many people he raped and murdered. Ravenna dies by the hand of the person she'd been trying to kill for the whole movie.
  • Keystone Army: Seemingly played straight with the Dark Army in the opening who shatter like glass upon any heavy impact. Double subverted in that the Dark Army was just bait and a way for Ravenna to gain access to the king to seduce him, with her real human army easily taking over the castle, and in the climax the Dark Army returns in a more primitive form and slaughtering the rebel forces with ease.
  • Kneel Before Frodo: The people at the Duke's castle kneel in awe before Snow White.
  • Kneel Before Zod: The Queen's guards force the Huntsman to kneel before Ravenna.
  • Lady of War: Snow White becomes one to take back her kingdom.
  • Last Bastion: Duke Hammond's castle.
  • La Résistance: Duke Hammond leads a fairly ineffective one until Snow White shows up and galvanizes them.
  • Large Ham: The Queen, and how.
    • Hamminess must run in the family, because her brother Finn definitely has his moments as well. Some of the best examples are when he makes the mistake of revealing to the Huntsman that Ravenna lied to him about being able to bring his wife back before he hands Snow White to him, and of course, shortly afterwards when the Huntsman pushes him into a pit of hallucinogenic mushrooms.
      Finn: My sister has many powers. She can take life away, or sustain it. But she can't bring your wife back from the dead, you FOOL!!
      Finn: (screaming from the pit of mushrooms) I WILL FIND YOU!!!
  • Life Drinker: The Queen is shown draining the Life Energy of an unfortunate woman to rejuvenate herself.
  • Light Feminine and Dark Feminine: Snow White and Ravenna.
  • Like Brother and Sister: William and Snow White. They used to play with each other as kids and were constantly bickering.
  • Literally Shattered Lives: The soldiers in the Queen's army are seemingly made of obsidian, and shatter when attacked. This is how they are killed in the first battle by the King's army. However, in the end battle, the soldiers are shown to be able to Pull Themselves Together when shattered by William and the Huntsman.
  • The Lost Lenore: Sara, the Huntsman's late wife, whom he failed to protect. The Huntsman even feels that Snow White reminds him of Sara, which in a sense makes Snow White his Replacement Goldfish.
  • The Lost Woods: The Dark Forest and the Sanctuary. One is an evil forest and one is full of fairies, but they're both undoubtedly ancient forests filled with strange creatures. However, the Huntsman, being one of the only people to have survived entering the Dark Forest before, has learned that while it is treacherous and filled with dangerous creatures, the real danger is that it is full of hallucinogenic spores. Combined with the superstitions of the average person of the time, a person wandering the Dark Forest perceives it as much more hellish.
  • Love Interests: Even though there was No Romantic Resolution at the end, William is assumed to be a love interest for Snow White as she kissed him (even though it was actually Ravenna). The Huntsman may also qualify, but it is never made clear as to whether or not he actually developed romantic feelings towards Snow White. Before she is revived, he mentions that she inspires feeling of worth in him in a fashion similar to his late wife.
  • Love Triangle: Subverted. You'd expect one between William, the Huntsman, and Snow White, but it is only implied and never directly addressed, to some people's frustrations and others' jubilation. It is speculated that this is to be a major subplot in the sequel, as it is never made clear if Snow White did end up falling in love with the Huntsman or William.
  • Luckily My Shield Will Protect Me: During the final battle given all the Death from Above being hurled down on them. Snow White's troops form a mantlet with their shields after breaking into the castle, and they're the only defense possible against the shard-warriors; most of their wooden shields are eaten away by the time the Queen is defeated.
  • Magic Mirror: Here, it is an outright Mirror Monster which at one point looks like a shout-out to this sculpture.
    • Arguably subverted. Finn looks upon Ravenna while she talks to the mirror-man... Only to find that she's talking to nothing, implying that it's all just in her head.
  • Magpies as Portents: Magpies are all over this film. One appears right before Snow White is to be led to the Queen and murdered, two appear later to lead her to her horse. Basically, any time something happens, either one or two magpies will appear to portend it, whichever is appropriate. Not that anybody comments on this.
  • Make Up Is Evil: Ravenna wears Excessive Evil Eyeshadow. Snow White's red lips do not qualify as they are supposedly natural.
    • Plus that they are more pinkish than blood-red, even though the Queen explicitly requested "lips red as blood".
  • Mama Bear: Ravenna's and Finn's mom invoked dark powers to protect her children. But whenever she intended for her daughter to become a monster it is not clear.
  • Manipulative Bastard: This is how Ravenna usurped Snow White's kingdom in the first place. And she'd already done it to countless other kingdoms in the past, considering her immortality...
  • Manly Tears: The Huntsman cries Tears of Remorse over Snow White's comatose body, lamenting the fact that he failed to protect her and his wife.
  • Meaningful Name: Snow White, naturally. Also, the the Queen's name, Ravenna, is clearly a reference to her Creepy Ravens theme.
  • Medieval European Fantasy / Fantasy Counterpart Culture: The Land is clearly based on medieval Britain, and various regional accents amongst the cast (RP, Cockney, Scots etc) are used to complement the setting — Indeed, all location shooting took place in some very picturesque sylvan and mountainous regions of the UK. Christianity exists among natural deities, fairies, trolls, dwarves, and dark magic. It's also alluded that the huntsman is a veteran of The Crusades. Also shown is a Muslim-esque fishing village, where the women wrap their hair and hide their faces. Snow White also says the Lord's Prayer in the beginning of the movie.
  • Medieval Stasis: Assuming Ravenna's boast about how long she's lived is accurate and not simply hyperbole (which could be debatable based on her less-than-stable state of mind), than in the past 800 to 1400 years humans have not progressed at all past the plate armor knights on horseback phase (seen in her childhood flashback).
  • Mirror Monster: The Magic Mirror itself, as well as the obsidian shard warriors.
  • More Deadly Than The Male: Ravenna.
  • Mordor: Ravenna's Fisher King influence has turned the land into this.
  • Mr. Fanservice: Chris Hemsworth (the Huntsman) and Sam Claflin (William).
  • Ms. Fanservice: Kristen Stewart and Charlize Theron both.
  • Mushroom Samba: The Dark Forest is filled with hallucinogenic spores.
  • My Greatest Failure: The Huntsman letting his beloved wife out of his sight only for her to be captured, raped and eventually killed.
    • For William, riding away with his father instead of going back and saving Snow White. Snow points out that he can't exactly blame himself, considering how old he was at the time.
  • Mythology Gag: This bit:
    Beith: Hi-ho, lads, it's off to work.
    Quert: If he starts whistling, I'll smash his face in.
  • Narcissist: The Queen, naturally.
  • Natural Spotlight: On Snow White in the scene with her lying comatose in a white gown.
  • Neck Lift: Ravenna does this to poor Greta while draining her life force.
  • Never Trust a Trailer:
    • The quote at the top of the page is never said by Ravenna, and the Magic Mirror never shatters like it does in one of the trailers.
    • The trailers showed Ravenna being cool, elegant and sexy and didn't show much of her substantial hammy side.
  • No Immortal Inertia: Both Finn and Ravenna age rapidly upon their deaths.
  • Nonchalant Dodge: Ravenna spams this against Snow White, without even having to look.
  • No Romantic Resolution: Snow White is teased with both William and the Huntsman, but doesn't officially end up with either of them by the end. Kristen Stewart states in an interview that Snow White doesn't have any time to think about potential romance with William or the Huntsman, as they are in the middle of a war, and Snow White is extremely socially deprived from being locked in that tower for ten years.
  • No Ontological Inertia: Apparently, Ravenna's death causes her stolen beauty to be returned to those of her victims who are still alive (most notably the village girl from near the beginning of the film).
  • Nostalgia Filter: When William starts talking about how he followed Snow White everywhere and she inspired him, Snow White remembers it quite differently and mentions how they used to fight all the time. In actuality, it's the first clue that he's not the real William but a transformed Ravenna.
  • Not So Different: Said almost verbatim by Ravenna to Snow White during the climax.
  • Nothing Can Stop Us Now:
    Ravenna: You cannot defeat me!
  • Offing the Offspring: Ravenna wants to take Snow White's heart because this will give her Immortality.
  • Oh, Crap: Ravenna's face after Snow White stabs her.
  • Once Upon a Time: The film starts off with this, said by the Huntsman in a narration of Snow White's birth and childhood.
    • Later, in the Sanctuary, it's revealed that the magpies are being controlled/inhabited by a pair of benevolent fairies.
  • One to Million to One: When Ravenna is interrupted from taking Snow White's heart in the snowy woods, she shatters into a swarm of ravens.
    • And the White Hart who turns into a flock of doves when shot with an arrow.
  • Only I Can Kill Him: Ravenna can only be thwarted by the person of fairest blood, who just happens to be Snow White.
    Ravenna: By fairest blood is it done!
    Snow White: (stabs Ravenna, effectively killing her) And only by fairest blood is it undone.
    • Notably, a Red Shirt with unusually good initiative does the exact same thing much earlier in the movie and stabs the queen right in the chest, she seemingly shrugs it off and kills him effortlessly (though the stabbing is shown to have at least drained a bit of her stolen life mojo).
  • Ooh, Me Accent's Slipping: The Huntsman has a Scottish accent, which clashes with Chris Hemsworth's lovely Australian accent every so often, but for the most part it holds up well. Somewhat justified as his character is drunk half the time.
    • Charlize Theron's English accent slips in and out, too.
  • Our Dwarves Are All the Same: Yep. They're no different here than they are in any other fantasy setting.
  • Pantomime Animal: At one point when the dwarves are sneaking into the castle they walk on the other side of a horse that's between them and the guards.
  • Perma Stubble: Both the Huntsman and William have short facial hair which is longer than usual stubble but still not quite a beard.
  • Pimped-Out Dress: Ravenna wears many elaborate dresses throughout the course of the film. Also, Snow White's dress in the last scene.
  • The Power of Love: Interestingly, never really touched upon in the film. True Love's Kiss is never mentioned, although some think that the Huntsman was thinking of his wife when he kissed Snow White awake, and that was what made the kiss proportionate to one of true love.
  • Pragmatic Adaptation: The (rather short) novelization of the film downplays the more grandiose high fantasy elements of the plot, and tries to tell a slightly more grounded human story. Notably, it mostly eliminates the subplot about Snow White being The Chosen One and an incarnation of Life and Ravenna being a Walking Wasteland and an incarnation of Death. Also, instead of being an ancient evil who simply Does Not Like Men and has made a hobby of killing kings, in the novel Ravenna is a gypsy woman seeking revenge personally against the King, Snow White's father, for a pogrom against her village he supposedly ordered many years ago when she was a child.
  • Pre-Asskicking One-Liner: The Huntsman, before proceeding to knock out all of Finn's men and send Finn himself flying into a pit of hallucinogenic mushrooms.
    Huntsman: I want her BACK!
  • Pretty in Mink: One of Ravenna's many elaborate outfits.
  • Princely Young Man: William is advertised as "The Prince" in the movie posters, but he is a Duke's son, not an actual prince.
  • Punched Across the Room: Ravenna and Finn are able to send people flying with casual blows.
  • Rain of Arrows: As Snow White and her followers are riding towards the castle. The Queen's archers send a barrage of arrows through the air, taking down a number of Snow White's army.
  • Rape Is a Special Kind of Evil: Finn is heavily implied to be a serial rapist and murderer. He even boasts about his crimes to the husband of one of his victims, and it doesn't end well for him.
  • Rated M for Manly: Snow White might be the Xenified heroine, but between the axe-wielding Huntsman who has gone into the dark forest and survived twice and the arrow-shooting William who attacked the queen's men on a regular basis, there's loads of testosterone to go around.
  • Raven Hair, Ivory Skin: Snow White.
  • Real Men Love Jesus: The first lines of the adult Snow White, and future action heroine, are The Lord's Prayer.
  • Really 700 Years Old: In Queen Ravenna's words, she has lived at least 20 lifetimes. It's also implied that her sorcery allows her brother immortality through her healing his injuries.
  • Rebel Leader: Snow White becomes this when she reaches the Duke's castle.
  • Rescue Romance: Invoked Trope by Ravenna, who makes herself appear to be the prisoner of her own Dark Army. The king 'finds' her chained up in a carriage after supposedly defeating them, and immediately falls for this beautiful Damsel in Distress.
  • La Résistance: Those who oppose the Queen flock to the Duke's castle.
  • Resigned to the Call: The Huntsman is initially reluctant to help Snow White (or to obey the queen's order to "hunt her down", for that matter). He changes his mind when he realizes that he has left her in trouble.
  • Reverse Mole: William joins Finn's pursuit of Snow White because he knows it will lead him to her.
  • Rightful King Returns/In Its Hour of Need: The climactic battle.
  • Romantic False Lead: An interesting example. Viewers who are familiar with the fairy tale may assume that William (the Prince Charming figure) will be Snow White's love interest. Viewers judging from the title may assume that Snow White ends up with the Huntsman. In reality, however, there is no real love interest in this film. Though it is the Huntsman's kiss that breaks the spell.
  • Rousing Speech: Snow White gives one to the Resistance to inspire them to take back Ravenna's kingdom rather than continue hiding.
  • Royal Blood: Snow White's royal ancestry is part of why she is The Chosen One.
  • Royals Who Actually Do Something: You could say this about both Snow and Ravenna, though what they're fighting for is obviously on completely opposite ends of the spectrum. King Magnus also leads his knights into battle in the prologue, and William and his father go with Snow White's army to assault Ravenna's castle.
  • Rule of Symbolism: The film makes heavy use of symbolism and foreshadowing.
  • Rule of Three: Three drops of blood, spilled three times.
  • Saved for the Sequel/Sequel Hook: To keep the first film's focus on feminism and war, the implied Love Triangle between Snow White/William/The Huntsman is most likely going to be addressed in further sequels (there are plans for two).
    • It is rumoured that William will get a new Love Interest in the second movie.
  • Scenery Porn: The film has lots of incredibly beautiful nature shots. And no fewer shots of desolate and burnt-down landscapes.
  • Sensitive Guy and Manly Man: The Huntsman and William switch roles during the movie. At the beginning, The Huntsman is cynical, macho, and somewhat coarse, while William shows more refined emotions, especially whenever Snow White is concerned. However, The Huntsman is visibly more heartbroken than William over Snow White's death.
  • She Cleans Up Nicely: Snow White looks quite angelic in her white gown.
    • Played with when the only time the Huntsman comments on Snow White's beauty is when he tells her that she looks fetching in mail, not a dress.
  • Ship Tease: Mostly between the Huntsman and Snow White, because the only real moments she gets with William he turns out to be the Queen in disguise.
  • Shout-Out: The sleeves of Snow White's first dress are reminiscent of those on the dress worn by Disney Snow White.
    • The part where Snow White enters the Dark Forest while fleeing capture. The manner in which she mourns her horse's loss as it gets stuck in the bog is reminiscent of how Atreyu mournfully watching Artax die in the Swamp of Sadness.
    • The part where Snow White gets lost in the Dark Forest and gets into a Troubled Fetal Position is reminiscent of when an utterly dejected Bella Swan gets into that same position in the forest after Edward Cullen leaves her in the New Moon film.
    • When the eight dwarfs appear, their blind leader Muir is seen wearing a beaked mask like the ones worn by plague doctors during The Middle Ages. In effect, he's Doc. Could also be a mythology gag.
    • The White Hart in the Sanctuary is a clear Shout-Out to the Forest Spirit in Princess Mononoke. He even gets abruptly shot by the bad guys in a similar manner as he's meeting with the protagonist!
    • One of the dwarves starts singing the Disney film's "Heigh-ho" song while sneaking into the royal castle.
    • Halfway through her shapeshifting spell, the Evil Queen looks exactly like Lord Voldemort. In addition, she also resembles the Slender Man. The shapeshifting itself even looks remarkably like the T-1000.
    • The coat-of-arms of Snow White's kingdom looks suspiciously like the The White Tree of Gondor. Snow White's initial flight from the castle while on a white horse, pursued by about a dozen faceless black riders on black horses, is visually quite similar to Arwen's race to Rivendell when pursued by the Ringwraiths.
    • Under Ravenna's rule, the land is locked in an eternal state of winter, which only starts to lift when Snow White starts to gain power.
  • Shut Up, Hannibal!:
    • Early in the film, the Evil Queen walks up to a random prisoner and starts tormenting him with her usual Does Not Like Men spiel. Instead of politely listening to her ranting, in mid-speech the guy grabs an unsecured dagger from the guard holding him and straight up stabs her in the chest (which gives him more smarts and initiative than 99% of Fantasy genre characters). Sadly, she's enchanted and can only be killed by The Chosen One, and kills the poor guy for his defiance.
    • Snow White finally confronts Ravenna in battle and the latter has the former on the ropes. When Ravenna sneers at Snow White for having led her followers to their deaths in their attack on her kingdom, Snow White uses this chance to stab Ravenna in the heart.
  • Sir Not-Appearing-in-This-Trailer: Sam Claflin (William) appears for about a second in the trailer, and even then you have a hard time telling that it's him.
    • In fact, the voiceover makes it look like they're showing the Huntsman in that shot.
  • Smug Snake: Queen Ravenna
  • Snow Means Death: Snow White takes a bite from the disguised Ravenna's poisoned apple while in a snowy forest, and subsequently enters a death/coma.
    • During a flashback revealing the time when Ravenna's childhood village was destroyed, this tragedy either occurs during a snowy season or in a snowy location.
  • Something about a Rose: Snow White's mother is inspired by a rose blooming in winter, and hopes that her child will have the strength and courage of the flower.
  • Sorcerous Overlord: Queen Ravenna is a powerful Vain Sorceress who has usurped the throne.
  • Spikes of Villainy: Ravenna's crown sports tall and menacing "spires".
  • Squick: The apple that Ravenna in the guise of William tricks Snow White into eating. After she takes a bite it turns black and moldy and grows hair.
  • Stalker with a Crush: It is mentioned that Finn watches Snow White quite often while she's in prison, but doesn't come in because his sister won't let him.
  • Start of Darkness/When It All Began: We are shown a flashback of Ravenna's past, and how her mother was taken away when their village was attacked and destroyed. Her mother tells her to avenge her, and thus started Ravenna's evil exploits.
  • Stock Scream: A mook hit by an arrow lets out a Wilhelm scream as he falls over a railing.
  • Storming the Castle: Snow White and her army attack Ravenna's castle in the climax.
  • Stupid Evil: When the Huntsman is about to deliver Snow White to Finn, Finn gloats that Ravenna will not keep her bargain to resurrect the Huntsman's wife. If he had kept his mouth shut, the bad guys would have won.
    • Not a sure thing, as the Huntsman was already suspicious. From the queen's reputation to their evasions of his questioning as to why it was so important to get Snow White out of the forest alive, he'd have to be blind if those didn't raise flags.
  • Super Strength: Ravenna and Finn.
  • Symbolic Blood:
    • When the king dies, he knocks over a chalice full of red wine.
    • When Finn is killed by the Huntsman, Ravenna spills black ink on a piece of parchment.
  • Sympathy for the Devil: When Queen Ravenna, disguised as William, says that Snow White must hate her for what she's done, Snow White responds that she used to, but that she now feels only sorrow. Later, you can see a pitying look on her face before she stabs and kills Ravenna.
  • Taking the Bullet: One of the dwarves saves Snow White's life by taking the arrow aimed at her.
  • Tampering with Food and Drink: The poisoned apple, of course.
  • The Queen's Latin: While originally a German fairy tale, all of the characters (except the Huntsman, who has a Scottish accent) have English accents regardless of the actor's origin.
  • This Is Reality: Invoked. One of the trailers states that "this is not a Fairy Tale".
  • Through the Eyes of Madness: Very likely, the mirror. All of Ravenna's magic is perceived by the other characters... except for the talking mirror. When Finn watches Ravenna speaking to the mirror, he sees only her.
  • Tomboy Princess: As a child, Snow White likes climbing trees and playing with boys.
  • Tonight Someone Kisses: The trailer left people thinking that William's kiss would wake Snow White. But as it turns out, the Huntsman kiss does, and William's kiss pretty much didn't mean anything.
  • Too Dumb to Live: Sure Finn, keep taunting the Huntsman about how you raped and murdered his wife. It's not like he won't get pissed at you.
  • Toplessness from the Back: Ravenna on several occasions, although not always in a good way.
  • Troubled Backstory Flashback: Ravenna's flashback shows her mother being taken away when their village was attacked. Her mother's cry to "avenge us" was what probably triggered Ravenna's Start of Darkness.
  • Troubled Fetal Position: When Snow White is lost in the Dark Forest.
    • Queen Ravenna writhes into this position whenever her magically conjured youth and/or sorceress powers falter significantly.
  • True Beauty Is on the Inside: Whilst the film recognises Snow White as the Fairest of Them All, what defines her from Ravenna and what is ultimately more important is her inner beauty.
  • True Love's Kiss: Made obvious by the Climactic Music that plays after the Huntsman kisses Snow White.
  • Unexplained Recovery: It's surprising how little anyone bats an eyelid when Snow White casually walks out, perfectly alive, of the castle wherein she was laid out while dead. Apparently, in this universes, True Love's Kiss can just do that.
  • Unlucky Childhood Friend: William. His kiss fails to awaken Snow.
  • Unstoppable Rage: Don't taunt the Huntsman about how he failed to protect his wife.
  • Use Your Head: Finn headbutts the Huntsman at one point, sending him flying.
  • Vain Sorceress: Ravenna.
  • Victorian Novel Disease: During Snow White's childhood, her mother suffered from and died from some malady that involved a fever.
  • Villain Song: Ravenna gets one that plays over the credits.
  • Villainous Breakdown: Ravenna has one rather early on when Snow White first escapes the castle.
  • Warrior Prince: William.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: The fate of Ravenna's Magic Mirror is unknown.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: The Huntsman tries to leave Snow White, and is asked how he can possibly be that cold.
  • When Trees Attack: Snow White is clawed at by trees in the Dark Forest during a drug trip.
  • Why Don't You Just Shoot Him?: Finn and Ravenna miss out on their chances of killing both the Huntsman and Snow White because they're too busy gloating.
  • Wicked Stepmother: Only barely. Ravenna did marry the king before she took over.
  • Will They or Won't They?: Snow White and William/The Huntsman.
  • Wolverine Claws: Ravenna wears some intimidating-looking silver claws on her hands as a part of her elaborate outfits.
  • Woman in Black: Ravenna, in most of the movie. Part of being a foil to a girl named Snow White and all.
  • Woman in White: Snow White. The Resistance dresses Snow White in a white gown when she's in her coma/death. When Snow White later wakes she gives the Resistance a Rousing Speech while wearing this white gown.
    • Ravenna also has a moment where she submerges herself in a white liquid and emerges white from head to toe.
  • Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds: A flashback reveals that Ravenna and Finn were the sole survivors when their childhood village was pillaged and destroyed. Guess what the Queen does to her and others' kingdoms now?
  • World's Most Beautiful Woman: Snow White. Played with in that the movie emphasizes that this a combination of both her inner and outer beauty.
  • Worm That Walks: The soldiers in the Dark Army at the beginning, as well as the monsters at the end, are both made up of some kind of magical glass or other substance.
  • Would Hit a Girl: When the dwarves capture Snow White and the Huntsman, one suggests gutting Eric and leaving Snow to rot. "I don't like hurting girls." Another dwarf says casually that he does, so the first dwarf says that's all right them.
  • Would You Like to Hear How They Died?: As a form of Evil Gloating, Finn tells the Huntsman of how he raped and killed Sara, the Huntsman's wife, and how she cried for him but he wasn't there. Bad idea. The Huntsman kills him by impaling him on a tree.
  • Wounded Gazelle Gambit: Ravenna pulls one to gain the king's sympathy.
    • Snow also does the same thing to get Ravenna close enough for her dagger.
  • Xenafication: In this version, Snow White goes Joan of Arc on her enemies.
  • X Meets Y: Snow White meets Lord of the Rings.
  • Ye Goode Olde Days/The Dung Ages: Both are used, depending on whether times are good or times are bad. In the beginning of the movie under the reign of King Magnus, the kingdom was prosperous, while everything is dirty and grimy when Ravenna is queen.
  • You Killed My Father: Invoked during the climax, by Ravenna rather than Snow.
  • You Remind Me of X: Snow White reminds the Huntsman of his deceased wife, and some could even consider her to be a Replacement Love Interest.
    Huntsman: You remind me of her. Her heart, her spirit...
  • 0% Approval Rating: Everyone hates Ravenna. They're also completely terrified of her. While talking with Snow White in the forest in the guise of William, she even admits this.

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alternative title(s): Snow White And The Huntsman
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