By Kim Boram
SEOUL, July 10 (Yonhap) -- Princess Snow White in Walt Disney's animated film of the same name is "the fairest one of all," and only "love's first kiss" can break the curse put on her after biting into a poisoned apple.
In the upcoming "Red Shoes," directed by Hong Sung-ho, however, Princess Snow White, voiced by Hollywood actress Chloe Moretz, breaks the stereotype.
She isn't beautiful and slim, but round and mousy. But she is genial, composed and highly motivated to look for her missing father, who has probably been jinxed by her vicious stepmother Regina.
In fact, seven princes on Fairy Tale Island have been cursed and become ugly, short dwarves who must be kissed by the most beautiful woman in the world to break the spell.
The story begins as Snow White sneaks into her stepmother's secretive room at the top of a tower to search for clues about the whereabouts of the king.
There, she finds a pair of magical red shoes that dangle from a mysterious tree, and they become her biggest secret.
With the shoes on, Snow White becomes the pretty princess that everyone knows: "the fairest one of all."
After fleeing from Regina's tower, the beautiful princess wakes up at the cursed seven dwarves' cottage. The princes, taken by her beauty, enter into a competition to be the one to receive a kiss to get out of the spell.
Voiced by English actor Sam Claflin, Merlin, the undoubting leader of the seven dwarfs, keeps saying that she would like him at first sight if she saws his real appearance, tall and handsome.
While overcoming fierce attacks by snooty Prince Average, who tries to kidnap the beautiful princess for his birthday party, Snow White and Merlin gradually acknowledge the inner beauty of each other.
Even though "Red Shoes" is an animated film for children, it manages to measure up to audiences' expectations in terms of storytelling and humor until the end.
Fresh twists to the classic fairy tale help "Red Shoes" avoid falling into a groove, and some outstanding parodies of famous Disney films jazz up the onscreen vive.
A handful of colorfully charming scenes and characters led by famous animator Kim Sang-jin, who previously worked on Disney's hit "Frozen" and "Tangled," make the movie's story more appealing.
But for young audiences who are accustomed to the recent flood of Disney-style musical animated films, "Red Shoes" may be a bit less gripping or intriguing.
Although it seems to meet the aim to break stereotypical beauty standards among fairy tale characters, people may still expect catchy songs and showy dances in this Disney-like animated film.
It has to beat the odds and make its presence felt at South Korea's box office, which is expected to be dominated by this year's most anticipated live-action film, "Lion King."
"Red Shoes," which was sold to 123 countries worldwide, will hit local screens on July 25.
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