Skip to main content

Zach Experiences The #ReadyPlayerOne x Hot Topic Present: The Oasis Experience In Phoenix

HANSEL & GRETEL: WITCH HUNTERS Review. Wickedly Delicious Fun

By: MattInRC

HANSEL & GRETEL: WITCH HUNTERS is wickedly delicious fun. Just check any desire for reality at the door.

January 2013 has turned into an exceptional month for new films. With releases like Gangster Squad, Broken City, and even Promised Land offering deeper, non-throwaway fare, HANSEL & GRETEL: WITCH HUNTERS arrives needing to prove its meddle to keep this surprising January run going. Luckily, the film does just that, delivering great action, a tight (albeit short) story, and solid acting by its stars.

Based on the Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm fairy tale of the same name, HG:WH is basically Part 2 of the story, following the adventures of siblings Hansel (Jeremy Renner, The Avengers) and Gretel (Gemma Arterton, Clash of the Titans) after they escape certain death during childhood to become prolific contract killers. Armed with an array of high-tech gadgetry (reminding one of 19th Century 007's) Hansel and Gretel find plenty of action - burnings, hangings, and beheadings follow, memorialized in newspaper reports which dominate the opening credits. The duo are soon contracted to defend the town of Augsburg who has lost 11 children to witch kidnappings, all of which seem to have no connection. The town's sheriff (Peter Stormare, Armageddon) doesn't buy into Hansel and Gretel's street cred, deciding to prosecute an accused witch (newcomer Pihla Viitala) without a trial. One broken nose and a concussion later, Berringer sends his own team out to find the children, but several are killed by the evil sorceress Muriel (Famke Janssen, X-Men Trilogy), who allows one surviving member to return to the town's tavern before exploding in front of the crowd. Such bloodfest is common in HG:WH, as the siblings dig deeper into the kidnappings by 'interrogating' witches along the way. When they learn that Muriel is planning to make all witches invulnerable during a ceremony involving the kidnapped children, Hansel and Gretel must sacrifice everything to stop Muriel before the region is plunged into total darkness.

Director/Writer Tommy Wirkola (Dead Snow) crafts a fairly vicious affair, complete with severed human heads, witch bodies torn through piano wire, and other gruesome employs. One might be led to believe that violence is all you get with HG:WH, and for the most part that's true. But, Wirkola and Co-Writer D.W. Harper insert smart humor and a little sexiness at propitious moments. There's also a critical side story explaining what happened to their parents, but the main play here is the Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter-esque violence that looks at once to be totally unbelievable yet is still highly enjoyable. Perhaps it's due to the terrific 3D conversion (yes, I did say that) or the IMAX experience, but the element surrounding the suspension of disbelief plays a necessary role here, a fact which audiences should already be used to 'switching on.' Doing so opens the eyes to a wild visual fest complete with a troll named Edward, a witch gathering ala Star Wars cantina, and several very good highly-stylized action sequences. Wirkola gets the most out of Renner and Atherton, who grew on me as the film progressed (I disliked the previews, to be honest), while Janssen is a perfect mix of sultry and vicious in leading her victims to a cruel death. The music, courtesy of Composer Hans Zimmer (Gladiator) and his Remote Control Productions protegee Atli Örvarsson (The Eagle), is well-crafted, marching to a pulsing witch killer soundtrack while Renner and Arterton slash their way to the film's dramatic conclusion. And while the film's 88-minute runtime is a bit short, it's a tightly focused with just enough character development to connect the bridges.

I heard critics last night complaining about the implausibility of the story - get real. You don't watch HG:WH for deep intellectualism, and the film has no intention of delivering it, instead bringing plenty of action, funny one-liners, and Edward the troll into the mix. If you liked Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter or Hugh Jackman's Van Helsing, HG:WH will certainly appeal to you. If your intent is to see the classic Grimm Fairy Tale retold as a sweeping epic of grand scale, spend your money elsewhere. Its summer blockbuster moniker is well-deserved, but don't let that keep you from seeing it in 3D and spending the extra cash if you can for IMAX. I promise you won't be disappointed. Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters is rated R for nudity, language, and witch ass-kicking violence and has a runtime of 88 minutes.

Please Leave A Comment-


Popular posts from this blog

First Look At Rene Zellweger As Judy Garland

Renee Zellweger would be taking on the challenge of playing Judy Garland in a new biopic called, simply, Judy. If you wondered what she'd look like, you now have the chance.

Director Rupert Goold has now kicked off shooting the film in London, working from a script by The Crown's Tom Edge. The story is set in 1968 as Garland arrives in chilly, swinging London to perform at a sell-out run of her show. It's 30 years since she appeared in The Wizard Of Oz, and if her voice isn't quite the same, her intensity has grown.

She faces battles with her management and charms the musicians she works with, while also starting a romance with Mickey Deans, who will go on to be her fifth husband. Yet she's also haunted by memories of a childhood lost to Hollywood and struggling with the desire to be back home with her kids.

Jessie Buckley, Finn Wittrock and Michael Gambon are also in the cast, with no word yet on a release date.

Discuss this with fellow SJF fans on Facebook. On Tw…

Enter For A Chance To Win Tickets To See SHERLOCK GNOMES in Phoenix

Enter For A Chance To Win Pass To See SHERLOCK GNOMES on March 22nd at 5:30 PM in Phoenix.

The beloved garden gnomes from GNOMEO AND JULIET are back for a whole new adventure in London. When Gnomeo and Juliet first arrive in the city with their friends and family, their biggest concern is getting their new garden ready for spring. However, they soon discover that someone is kidnapping garden gnomes all over London. When Gnomeo and Juliet return home to find that everyone in their garden is missing – there’s only one gnome to call… SHERLOCK GNOMES. The famous detective and sworn protector of London’s garden gnomes arrives with his sidekick Watson to investigate the case. The mystery will lead our gnomes on a rollicking adventure where they will meet all new ornaments and explore an undiscovered side of the city. This action-packed sequel features the voices of returning cast, James McAvoy, Emily Blunt, Michael Caine, Maggie Smith, Stephen Merchant and Ozzy Osbourne, plus Johnny Depp a…

Enter For A Chance To Win Tickets To See ISLE OF DOGS In San Antonio

Enter For A Chance To Win Pass To See ISLE OF DOGS on April 3rd at 7:00 PM in San Antonio.

ISLE OF DOGS tells the story of ATARI KOBAYASHI, 12-year-old ward to corrupt Mayor Kobayashi. When, by Executive Decree, all the canine pets of Megasaki City are exiled to a vast garbage-dump called Trash Island, Atari sets off alone in a miniature Junior-Turbo Prop and flies across the river in search of his bodyguard-dog, Spots. There, with the assistance of a pack of newly-found mongrel friends, he begins an epic journey that will decide the fate and future of the entire Prefecture.


Facebook: /isleofdogsmovie
Twitter: @isleofdogsmovie
Instagram: @isleofdogsmovie




This screening will be monitored for unauthorized recording. By attending, you agree not to bring any audio and/or visual recording device including laptop computers…