From: Paramount Pictures
DVD Release: June 11, 2013
Theater Release Date: January 25, 2013
Category: Action/Adventure, Fantasy
MPAA Rating: R
Director: Tommy Wirkola
Rating: 3 out of 5 stars
Fifteen years after a horrific experience in a deceptively inviting ginger bread house, an orphan Hansel (Jeremy Renner) and Gretel (Gemma Arterton) have become famous for ridding the countryside of witches. Despite their stellar success record, the brother and sister face a unique challenge when an extremely powerful witch is identified as the culprit stealing children from a local village with the intent to sacrifice them in an ancient magical ceremony to be held on the night of the Blood Moon. As Hansel and Gretel race against the clock, making several unlikely allies on the way (among them include a troll and a witch hunter fanboy), they unexpectedly come across a link to their own pasts and the secret their parents took with them when they disappeared.
Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters is not a good movie, and I probably shouldn’t admit that I found it fun to watch.
Setting: It’s the standard 1700s German setting, a small whose children are disappearing due to a local witch. Of course, I’m not really sure, because the language is of course totally modern, Gretel wears a skin-tight black leather outfit and our heroes have rapid fire guns and bows. I don’t mind the mishmash, but it is a mess.
Characters: I love the idea of seeing Hansel and Gretel as adults, seeing how their encounter with the witch shaped them and I totally could buy them becoming witch hunters. They’re lacking much character beyond being kick-ass and sexy. Hansel does get a love interest, a lovely woman who is quite obviously, at least to the audience, a witch, although it takes Hansel a while to catch on. Gretel is not so lucky, but at the point in time what man wants a woman who can knock him unconscious without thinking twice?
Plot: The witches are collecting children for some big ceremony. There’s lots of violence and blood. Good guys win. That’s about it.
Recommendation: Don’t go out of your way to see it, but if you’re like me and just have a thing for fairy tales and re-tellings, it’s not an entire waste of time.