Review: "Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters" 3D (2013)
This review contains no spoilers.
Directed by: Tommy Wirkola
Starring: Jeremy Renner and Gemma Aterton
Official movie website and trailer
I wasn't sure what to expect when I went to see "Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters" in 3D, but what I got was "Buffy: the Vampire Slayer" meets "Once Upon a Time" and "Snow White and the Huntsman" (SWATH). This movie adequately capitalizes on the interest in re-made fairy tales and legendary lore.
Is There Incest? No. Thank goodness. There's romance, but no incest, and that's all you're getting out of me in terms of plot. Besides, you'll have the entire movie plot figured out within the first ten minutes.
Go for the Renner, stay for the explosions.
It's Rated R. Seriously. Being an adult, I don't really pay attention to mainstream movie ratings, so I just kind of assumed that "H&G" was PG-13. I thought it would be done in the style of "SWATH," a fresh re-telling of a traditional story. While it was that, it was definitely darker and more adult.
The characters use the F word when appropriate and the violence and gore are gratuitous. Unfortunately, the filmmakers didn't take advantage of the R rating when it came to a sex scene. Needless to say, Renner fangirls everywhere will be disappointed, but at least he appears shirtless, so there are arms.
Not Too Serious... Like "Buffy," this movie is entertaining and engaging without taking itself too seriously. The witch nemeses are presented in full-out attire and embellishment. This movie isn't in a half-fantasy world - it goes full-scale when it comes to the fantastic.
Aesthetic. This film blended medieval fantasy and steampunk attire and weapons. I wish more movies did that. It made it different from "SWATH," which is an obvious comparison since Renner's "The Avengers" co-star Chris Hemsworth plays the Huntsman in that film.
Explosions, Weapons, Spells. There are lots of explosions; this makes good use of the 3D, but it's not overdone. Seeing it in 3D was worth the extra bow. If you've ever wanted to know what it's like to get shot by a crossbow bolt or spell without actually taking damage, this is your chance.
My husband (a former Marine) likes weapons, and there were many for him to enjoy in this movie. I was kind of into the witch spells. I wish my LARP character could bend trees and stuff like the witches in the movie.
Jeremy Badass Renner. Renner fans won't be disappointed. He's basically Hawkeye in a medieval fantasy setting. His humor is quirky and dry; he has badass yet sincere moments.
Gemma Aterton. Aterton pulls off an unflinchingly tough Gretel. She's unapologetic about her skills (and her occasional sensitivity) which I found rather empowering. As a related bonus, this movie passes the Bechdel Test during a fight between two females. (And no, the fight is not over a guy.)
Overall, this movie wasn't phenomenal, but it's worth seeing in 3D. I recommend it to fans of:
- "Buffy: the Vampire Slayer"
- "Cabin in the Woods"
- "Once Upon a Time"
- Steampunk and medieval fantasy genres
What did you think about the movie? Please leave your comments below.