I guess one of my main gripes with this is that most of the story on the characters is implied rather than shown or explained. The take on this Snow White adds some new lore while not properly introducing it. (SPOILERS AHEAD)
The Huntsman has not gotten over the loss of his wife after so many years. That said it's not mentioned how she died but implied Finn is the one that killed her, for some reason; be it a raid/personal vendetta/whatever.
Queen Ravenna is implied to be a witch/person that practices in the dark arts/just your standard magic practitioner. How she gets her power is shown, briefly but not explained. It's implied that the magic usage comes at a cost but that cost is inconsistent throughout the film. Magic in itself is not really explained in this universe but I will cover that point a little later. For some reason, we are shown a part of her past. In the same flashback she acquires her power, her village is being raided with the last known words from her mother being, "Avenge Me!" She then grows up to be a misandrist and completely forgets about her family altogether, aside from her brother, Finn.
Finn is implied to be mortally connected to his sister, though how is unknown. Apparently they share in Ravenna's collective life force, idk. The flashback only showed Ravenna offering her blood into some white liquid before she ingests it while Finn looks on in shock and mild confusion.
Apparently the life of the King or Queen or both comes with the invigorating life force of their blood, which collectively heals the land and the people within the Kingdoms. Their blood is capable of having Anime Protagonist levels of Charisma apparently.
William climbed a tree once/twice/a couple times and now he's a crackshot archer.
Onto the lore:
When Ravenna is first introduced, her carriage is surrounded by a dark army that, when killed, shatters into pieces of obsidian like shards but is able to continue to fight until they are actually "killed." This power is almost never shown again for the rest of the film. Why need a Huntsman to navigate a forest when you can send a couple of these soldiers to search for your missing princess? The only other time they are used is towards the end except now they vaguely resemble humanoid shapes, acting more like Wendigos out of Until Dawn. Again, the origin of this power is not explained, just that she has it.
Ravenna is capable of different types of magic but only under and until the Plot Armor of the verbal confirmation of "cost" is that actually shown. Somehow she's able to to summon and create these black soldiers/creatures for an extended period of time and no harmful effects are shown. Hell, even the chaotic battle scene at the end did next to nothing. Healing herself, her brother, conversing with her mirror, forcefully accelerating a heart to burst, also next to no ill affects. On the topic of the mirror, it more or less resembles a Bronze Gong than it does any mirror and is somehow connected to her powers, but that isn't explained either.
Shapeshifting into Snow White's apparent love interest, that she somehow knew even if Snow didn't at the time, then dispersing into a flock of crows, that is what accelerates her age
Magic in general is not properly introduced or tied down to anything. You have a realm of fairies that reacts instinctively to Snow White's inherent power, and yet this power is not properly explained as it is implied to be inherited from her father. Where and why does her father have it? For being a good man, is that it?
The additions of the Dark Forest and the random Bridge troll were interesting. There is a magic that exists in the forest but it is hidden under a generic, veiled interpretation of "Do not show weakness, else the forest shall seek it and exploit it." The deadliest thing shown are the ground releasing spores that cause a psychedelic reaction, depending on the dosage. It was interesting to see the trip, yet imo it was shown to last a little too long. The bridge troll seemed only to be added just to show Snow White's "power."
That's all the lore that i've seen. The messages the movie tries to convey feel a little too forced. I'll explain.
The film tries pretty hard to convey the power of women/girl power/whatever you want to call it. I normally don't have a problem with a little feminism implemented here or there to make the characters a little more badass, but this movie tries to shoehorn that pretty hard. The most glaring example of this is the character development of Snow White. She goes from this girl kept locked in a tower, now that she has escaped is perfectly fine hiking it all the way to Duke's Castle. By the end of the movie, she is clad in metal gear ready for battle.....except she has never received any proper training from anyone. Now she just knows how to fight? The only thing she was told was how to use a dagger to pierce the heart in which she replied "I could never do that."
She dies, then comes back to life, now she can do that. Convenient.
I don't usually complain about acting in most movies. If it can tell the story, i'm more than satisfied. But, there are some issues here.
The only character that I didn't like off the bat was Finn, as there was sufficiently something there that people could hate.
Ravenna was...weird. She's supposed to be a cold, poisonous dictator. That only comes about towards the end. Even with Charlize Theron taking that role, she came off as nothing but a Vain, Wannabe-Queen that's actually still a spoiled Princess. At times demented by her greed for power, but nothing really that said Evil Queen. Saying that she poisoned the land doesn't say much either, especially since it's not shown what she did.
For the most part as Kristen Stewart did alright as Snow White. But whenever she is trying to convey confusion, annoyance, anger, it all gets blended together into one awkward poker face. This is especially prevalent at the end of the film. That was a bit too much awkward silence for my liking.
Choreography and Continuity
The fight scenes aren't really that fulfilling, especially with the amount of jump cuts. On occasion, the shots are slowed down to show the power, but with that not being the real main focus of the movie, it really detracts from it rather than adding to it. One character dying looked like it had around six different takes, with each take the character exhibiting a different physical outlook before actually dying. My biggest issue here is wetness. Characters that come out of bucket in the ground filled with water or are literally in a sh*thole will then pop out said hole and be perfectly dry in full gear. Coming out of a sh*thole you literally smell like sh*t so how does that go unnoticed? Now walking around the hillside and it is misting, now you're fully drenched.
Lastly, the CGI. It's good but there is one problem: it feels like it's being used as a filler scene or sequence while not actually providing to the story. There are a couple visages of Ravenna having crows encircle her in formation then now she just has a cloak of crows, but it's actually just slime. Same thing applied to the dark soldiers at the end. It just feels like a cop out. I think that's about it.
Even with all that i think i'd still recommend it, but only rent it, don't buy it. The film is a little too long, the plot holes are as numerous as there are continuity errors.