Screenplay: Tommy Wirkola, Dante Harper
Release date: 2013
Genre: Action/Horror/Comedy/Fairy tale
Hansel: Jeremy Rennel
Gretel: Gemma Arterton
Dark witch Muriel: Famke Janssen
Mina: Pihla Viitala
Edward the troll : Derek Mears
Now they are back: still toghether, more lethal than before, wearing leather jackets and latex pants. Hunting witches for money - that's what they do the best.
One day they are hired by Mayor Englemann from Augsburg to find and rescue several children abducted by witches. When they arrive, they prevent Sheriff Berringer from executing Mina, a young woman accused of witchcraft. Berringer hires trackers for the same mission, hoping to regain the respect of the Mayor. However, all but one of the party are killed that night by the powerful grand witch Muriel, who sends the surviving member back to the town tavern to explode as a warning to the locals. Hansel and Gretel, with the help of the Mayor's deputy Jackson, capture a witch and interrogate her. They discover that the witches are preparing for the ritual of Blood Moon, which requires sacrificing six boys and six girls, each born on a separate month. Will our witch hunters manage to save them on time? What other secrets will be unveiled, concerning their own life? Who they can trust?
Tommy Wirkola asked himself what became of Hansel and Gretel when they grew up. The answer seemed such a simple one: obviously they became witch hunters. Such an elegant solution. What about the rest? Well...
First let me tell you that I love different adaptations and renderings of classic fairy tales so I was very eager to watch this one, especially as the director wanted to go several steps further than the actual fairy tale. He also did his best to entertain the wider audience.The project was filmed in Germany and featured an international cast and crew. There's enough action, killing and gore to satisfy any gung ho movie-goer. Our Gretel is a buxom beauty, not afraid to show her assets; Hansel has a bit of romance with Mina, a girl he helped to save from the lynching mob and she isn't exactly a shy virgin as well. Still while watching the movie I got a distinct impression everything was somehow a fake and, after a while, if I laughed it was out of sheer embarassment. 'Style over substance' is a good description of this one; I suppose it is always nice if you can switch off your brain and just let the narration take you whenever it is going...I admit I am not good at that.
|Candy cottage in the shape of...the Sauron's eye?|
None of the witches had any backstory: they just seemed to exist for ornamental purposes and to be turned into mincemeat of course. Nobody even tried to explain what had made these women turn to dark witchcraft, risking their lives, apart from the obvious perks: donning tons of Goth make-up, very well-done I grant it, fancy, artfully torn clothes and flying brooms... Would you die for a chance to paint your face or fly your broom though? I don't think so. Overall the baddies were as thin as a sheet of paper so no pleasant surprises there.
|Isn't he lovely?|
An interesting tidbit: at the end Gretel was allowed two more or less permanent admirers but Hansel remained alone. I wonder why. To draw the ladies to the sequel (perish the thought)?
Was it really eighty-eight minutes of trash? More or less yes. Still it puts forth one sound message: kids, avoid overindulging in sweets, especially if you see candy that doubles as drywall and other building elements. And remember, there is no such thing as 'free candy'. However, if you have a problem with dark witches don't hire Hansel and Gretel - they are very expensive amateurs. They don't even know how to distinguish between a dark witch and a white witch. Pathetic.