Flash Movie Review: Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters

My introduction to the brothers Grimm was through animated movies. I can remember being perched atop folded coats on my theater seat, so I would have a clear view of the movie screen. Cinderella dressed in her magical ball gown or the poisoned apple that induced eternal slumber for Sleeping Beauty were characters that amazed me, when I saw them up on the big screen. At a time before movie characters were marketed into every conceivable consumer product, I stored a variety of Grimm fairy tale characters in my imagination. Let me first say I am not a purist when it comes to keeping a story true to its original form. If the story can still be entertaining, I am fine with it. Unfortunately this abomination lacked the entertainment factor, besides a variety of other things. The movie updated the story of Hansel and Gretel by turning the brother and sister into adult witch hunters. Sure I get it, nearly cooked in an oven by an evil witch as kids; I could buy into their chosen profession. What I found out of character was having the two talking in a contemporary style, dropping the “F” word freely. It was foolish to have fairy tale characters from olden days swearing like thugs. Jeremy Renner (The Hurt Locker, The Bourne Legacy) was Hansel and we were led to believe he was a diabetic. He wore a special wristwatch that rang every 2 hours, reminding him to take an injection that would keep him alive. It was so ridiculous I knew the concept was only there to be used later in the boring story. Gemma Arterton (Quantum of Solace, Clash of the Titans) was the sharpshooter Gretel. The two were hired by a town to find a witch that was stealing children. What Hansel and Gretel found was a diabolical plot by the powerful witch Muriel, played by Famke Janssen (X-Men franchise, Goldeneye). In a nutshell the acting was miserable, the special effects were bland, the story was putrid and I resented the movie studio for tarnishing a classic tale.


1 1/4 stars 

About moviejoltz

From a long line of movie afficionados, one brother was the #1 renter of movies in the country with Blockbuster, I am following in the same traditions that came before me. To balance out the long hours seated in dark movie theaters, I also teach yoga and cycling. For the past 3 years, I have correctly picked the major Oscar winners... so join me as we explore the wonder of movies and search for that perfect 4 star movie.

Posted on January 30, 2013, in Fantasy/Sci-Fi and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 5 Comments.

  1. A strange new twist on an old tale!

  2. I have no desire to see this – my boys keep joking about this movie – cannot believe someone would even come up with this idea. I agree, though, I told them it is ‘different’ and in this day and age that is unique. Yes, I am playing the devil’s advocate. However, since Jordan wants to make his own movies someday, he may come up with something even more far fetched and be in the same situation as the person who conjured up this movie:)

  3. I kind of knew it would be a flop. Hollywood needs to quit messing with the classics. At least when Disney recreates a fairtale they only broaden it. Although, Jack The Giant Slayer might be alright. However, it’s hard to tell from a trailer. Never judge a film by its trailer…

  4. I just saw this a few days ago and I rather enjoyed it! I’ve been disappointed often enough with these sort of fantasy movies; usually just a lot of special effects with not much else (for me one example is The Sorcerer’s Apprentice) so I didn’t have high expectations. I thought Hansel and Gretel was a fun action movie, with even a bit of a story about their mum, and why they were abandoned in the woods.

    I agree with you about the ‘F’ word. I thought it was used too often, and felt like the movie was trying too hard to be funny or hip or something. It just sounded awkward.

    I didn’t know Famke Janssen (Goldeneye, X-men trilogy) who I like was in it, so that was a nice surprise. And deliciously evil too playing the main villain. And I enjoyed watching the guy who played the sheriff, he seems to always play the bad guy and he’s always good. I just realised I don’t know the actor’s name; and just checked imdb to find out it’s Peter Stormare.

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