The Huntsman: Winter’s War

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Positioned to bookend the action of 2012's "Snow White and the Huntsman," this lavishly-staged adventure - at once a prequel and a sequel to the original -- is well intentioned but dull and derivative. Director Cedric Nicolas-Troyan and screenwriters Evan Spiliotopoulos and Craig Mazin have doubled up on everything from the first outing, matching their two time frames with a duo of wicked queens (Charlize Theron, Emily Blunt), a pair of rival kingdoms and a brace of brave huntsmen (Chris Hemsworth, Jessica Chastain). A quartet of dwarves (Nick Frost, Rob Brydon, Sheridan Smith and Alexandra Roach) is thrown in for good measure. With barely a nod to the Brothers Grimm, the filmmakers cobble together a silly plot involving a quest to locate a missing magic mirror and prevent it from falling into the wrong hands.

Watch out for: Cartoonish action violence, implied premarital sexual activity, an out-of-wedlock pregnancy, a few crass terms.

Rated: A-III, adults; MPAA: PG-13

© Arlington Catholic Herald 2016