Sunday, July 21, 2013

Film — Blancanieves

Blancanieves is a silent black and white film self-referentially retelling the story of Snow White. In c1910 Spain, Carmencita's mother dies giving birth to her, the same day her famous wealthy toreador father is crippled in the bullring. A gold-digging nurse fills the role of the wicked step-mother who proceeds to ease both her new husband and later the unwanted stepdaughter off the mortal coil. However, in delegating the latter task, the deed was not carried through properly, and Carmencita, now amnesiac, is rescued by a troupe of half a dozen bull-fighting dwarfs.

After she displays the skills her father taught her, the troupe rebrands as Snow White and the Seven Dwarves (including a scene where you can see some of them counting and head-scratching), and heads towards a confrontation in the same arena where her father was brought low.

A silent film with English inter-titles (and occasional subtitles when print material was being shown), it had much of the style of the original silents, but without the scratched and deteriorated media -- or their necessary brevity : there are several pieces that establish mood or setting that go on just that little bit too long for what they need to do.

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