Monday, January 28, 2013

Review: Hansel and Gretel - Witch Hunters (2013) and Gretel: Witch Hunters (2013) is an action-adventure fantasy film based on the classic Germany fairy tale, Hansel and Gretel, by the Brothers Grimm. The film stars Jeremy Renner and Gemma Arterton as the brother-and-sister duo of professional witch hunters and Famke Janssen as the deadly leader of a coven of evil witches who set out to gain immense power and immunity to fire.

One fateful night, young Hansel and Gretel are abandoned by their parents in a deep forest. As they walk around the forest, they discover and enter an enchanted gingerbread house. They are quickly nabbed by an old evil witch who resides in it. She forces Hansel to continuously eat candy and makes Gretel prepare the oven. Before she has a chance to eat them, the siblings outsmart her and throw her into a fiery oven. They become instant heroes in the nearby town for killing the evil witch.

After the incident, Hansel and Gretel become bounty hunters who exterminate evil witches. Their work is relatively easy because they are immune to harmful witch spells and curses. Many years later, Hansel and Gretel prevent Sheriff Berringer from executing Mina, a young woman falsely accused of witchcraft, in the German town of Augsburg. Mayor Englemann has hired the siblings to investigate the disappearance of 11 children abducted by evil witches. In this particular case, the past meets the present. In other words, the siblings must hunt the most powerful grand witch they have ever encountered and stumble upon lost secrets that may reveal the truth about their parents’ deaths.

(Warning: this section contains spoilers) I really enjoyed this action film. It was a darker twist to this classic children's fairy tale. The adult versions of Hansel and Gretel became badass witch hunters who exterminate evil witches. With their witch-blood ancestry, they have immunity to spells and curses. It is a short film at 128 minutes, but the producers did a great job visually narrating their background story so that audiences can follow their trajectory as hunters in medieval Germany. The sibling duo gain a few friends along their journey, and who knows what awaits them as they unlock the secrets to their ancestry. If you have never read the original story-line, I highly recommend that you do in order to understand the plot. Overall, I highly recommend the film and hope that there will be a sequel in a few years!

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