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Comedy saves classic fairytale thriller in "Hansel and Gretel"

Contributing Reporter

Published: Thursday, January 31, 2013

Updated: Thursday, January 31, 2013 01:01

Comedy saves classic fairytale thriller

AP Photo/Paramount Pictures, David Appleby

ACTION-COMEDY: Gemma Arterton as Gretel, left, and Jeremy Renner as Hansel in a scene from “Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters.”

We all know the story; two siblings get lost in the woods, find a house made of candy, are almost killed and eaten by a witch but escape and live happily ever after. Time and time again these fairytales are transformed into fun and entertaining movies but sometimes they don’t always get it right.


In this remake of the classic tale directed by Tommy Wirkola, “Hansel and Gretel”, played by Jeremy Renner and Gemma Arterton, hold a little more resentment towards the witch that tried to kill them and dedicate their lives to hunting down witches.  


During the height of the witch trials, Hansel and Gretel are teamed up as a bounty hunting duo that goes from town to town killing witches. In this tale the two have been hired by a mayor of a small town to track down Muriel, a grand witch played by Famke Janssen, who has been kidnapping children.


Now I’m going to be honest, this movie wasn’t great but it does have a few quality moments. The best plot point of the movie would be the fact that Hansel has diabetes from eating so much candy as a child. Besides that, Renner’s character is funny whether that humor is intentional or not.


In fact if anything could have saved this movie it would have been Renner, who is known for action packed movies like “The Avengers” and “The Hurt Locker”. Even though the movie is action packed, complete with violent depictions of witch slaughter and one particularly gory scene involving a troll, the movie seems more like a comedy than action. The dialogue throughout and poor acting by Janssen and the other witches made it funnier than it was intended to be.


The plot line could have worked, but didn’t. I like the idea of two lost kids growing up and enacting revenge upon the witches that damned their childhood but that idea falls flat in this movie.


The movie was also unrealistic, and I don’t mean in the way that two kids grow up and viciously murder witches because that obviously happens all the time, more so that they were using machine guns to do it. This was set in what I’m assuming was the 1600s after all.


Overall, the movie wasn’t completely terrible. This movie may not be a cinematic masterpiece but it keeps the audience engaged and though it wasn’t intended to be a comedy it’s funny, action-packed and slightly entertaining.


We give this movie 2 out of 5 paws.

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