Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters (2013) Poster

User Reviews

Review this title
365 Reviews
Sort by:
Filter by Rating:
Some Good Moments But Not Enough Energy
Michael_Elliott11 February 2013
Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters (2013)

** (out of 4)

R-rated, gory horror-adventure has brother and sisters Hansel (Jeremy Renner) and Gretal (Gemma Arterton) called to a small town to try and locate some children that have been kidnapped by some witches. Soon they realize that a Queen witch (Famke Janssen) has bigger plans that could have a major change on the world. HANSEL & GRETEL: WITCH HUNTERS isn't quite as bad as some are making it out to be but there's no question that the entire film just has an uneasy mix of genres that never fully come together and in the end the film just came off as something that didn't know what it wanted to be or do. At times there's some campy comedy moments but these aren't good enough to save the picture. At other times we're given a fairly interesting look at two people hunting witches but the film doesn't do too much with this. We're also given a picture with some extremely graphic gore that comes out of nowhere. I really liked the fact that they went for a R-rating and didn't hold back for a smaller rating but at the same time if you took this away there really wouldn't be much to the movie. The film manages to be slightly entertaining because of this type of gore but at the same time I can see how it might not sit well with some more sensitive viewers. Another thing I liked was the actual look of the witches. The CGI effects were actually quite believable whenever the witches changed form in their faces. The look of the major witch was also quite nice and benefited from the strong and fun performance by Janssen who managed to bring a certain sexy nature to the role. Both Renner and Arterton are good in their parts but the screenplay really makes both characters quite boring and uninteresting. The supporting players here are usually much better and the movie probably would have benefited having them in it more. This includes an obsessed fan of the duo as well as an evil sheriff. Another problem with the film is that you just never really get involved with anything going on. It looks nice and some of the action scenes are put together nicely but there's just no real energy that brings you into the film.
28 out of 48 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
5/10
Entirely unwieldy
Leofwine_draca11 June 2014
HANSEL & GRETEL: WITCH HUNTERS is an entirely unwieldy comic book-style movie that sees the fairy-tale characters reinvented as VAN HELSING-style ass-kickers who hunt down and kill witches in various gory ways. The film has the same bright, fantastic look as the likes of other recent fare such as RED RIDING HOOD and it proves to be an entirely superficial adventure, and also one that's completely unwieldy.

First of all, the story is all over the place. Our heroes are smart asses throughout, happy dishing out one liners but struggling when they're required to provide anything more than that. The sub-plot involving their back story is a non-starter, as is the whole 'witch conspiracy' thing. Attempts to tie the story in to real-life witch cases like the infamous Salem trials are negated by the whole steampunk technology vibe going on; realistic this ain't.

So, what does the film have to recommend it? A ton of CGI-heavy action, that's what, which is neither here nor there really. A lot of it is over choreographed and it's occasionally a chore to sit through, particularly in that overlong and repetitive final fight scene. I hated how characters seem to be randomly indestructible, like Jeremy Renner who's stabbed twice in the stomach at one point only never to mention it again! Gemma Arterton is advertised as a tough ass-kicking heroine but turns out to be a mere damsel in distress, requiring rescue over and over again. The less said about Famke Janssen's villain, the better. I don't know who gives the worst performance as a witch in 2013; it's either her or Emma Thompson in BEAUTIFUL CREATURES.

The one thing the film has going for it is the bloodshed; this is R-rated produce so we get to see various characters killed in various bloody ways. There seems to be an emphasis on people exploding which is always good fun, and the introduction of a giant troll character into the storyline is an intriguing one. Hints at an incestuous sub-plot between the siblings are interesting even though they eventually go nowhere, and the film ends up petering out completely at the end. HANSEL & GRETEL: WITCH HUNTERS is a mess, yes, but one that's not totally without merit for those who love their B-movies.
3 out of 5 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
6/10
wild violent good time if you're so inclined
SnoopyStyle11 December 2013
Siblings Hansel (Jeremy Renner) & Gretel (Gemma Arterton) are sent out into the woods. They get taken by a witch, but are able to kill her. They'd grow up to be famous witch hunters. Many children have gone missing in and around the German town of Augsburg. The mayor brings in Hansel & Gretel to battle the witches and save the kids.

This is super violent, ultra-unrealistic, banging action movie. It's a blood splattering good time if you're so inclined. Renner and Arterton are mostly playing it for serious. This is possibly the major missing piece. It needs comedy to put it over the top. The action is ridiculous already. Just add a comedian to do some ridiculous jokes. Just make sure you don't bring the kids. This is no kids' fable. It's about killing ugly witches in every ugly way.
0 out of 1 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
decent
Kirpianuscus19 February 2017
it is part of a tend. precise target, technology as tool for recreate a new/modern version of a classic fairy tale, fight scenes and dark secrets, challenges and the link between good heroes. magic and fragments of legends and the original story as pretext. nothing new. or touching. a decent work. impressive for the same details like many other movies from the same genre. seductive for small crumbs. good manner to resurrect myths. and Renner in the right clothes of hero. the victims are the masters of justice and the old witch is so vulnerable behind her tricks. so, a nice film. for teenagers and for the fans of genre.
0 out of 0 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
7/10
A Great Entertainment
claudio_carvalho11 May 2013
The siblings Hansel (Jeremy Renner) and Gretel (Gemma Arterton) are left alone in the woods by their father and captured by a dark witch in a candy house. However they kill the witch and escape from the spot. Years later, the orphans have become famous witch hunters.

When eleven children go missing in a small village, the Major summons Hansel and Gretel to rescue them, and they save the red haired Mina (Pihla Viitala) from the local sheriff that wants to burn her accusing Mina of witchcraft. Soon they discover that the Blood Moon will approach in three days and the powerful dark witch Muriel (Famke Janssen) is the responsible for the abduction of children. She intends to use the children together with a secret ingredient in a Sabbath to make the coven of witches protected against the fire. Meanwhile Hansel and Gretel disclose secrets about their parents.

"Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters" is a great entertainment for ordinary viewers like me that like the genre of fantasy but based on the Metacritic Rating, it is not recommended to intellectuals. The story is very funny and the special effects and make-up are top notch. Gemma Arterton is one of the sexiest actresses and it is good to see her again. If the viewer likes this genre, he or she will certainly enjoy "Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters". I do not understand why people that like art movies spend their time watching this type of movie and writing bad reviews. My vote is seven.

Title (Brazil): "João e Maria: Caçadores de Bruxas" ("John and Mary: Witch Hunters")
65 out of 97 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
6/10
Following the trail
Prismark1031 March 2017
Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters is a solid, unpretentious action film that entertains. diabetic Hansel (Jeremy Renner) and his sister Gretel (Gemma Arterton) are orphans who might had once been helpless in the forest but moved onto become witch-hunters after destroying a cannibalistic witch who planned to eat them once upon a time.

They now go town to town where children have been abducted and slay witches. However when they encounter Muriel, an evil witch they learn of their own childhood traumas and about white witches that reveal the real reason they might have been left abandoned in the forest.

The film has enough gory action, good CGI, low running time and some humour. It is stupid and fun.
0 out of 0 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
7/10
NEVER WALK INTO A HOUSE MADE OF CANDY
nogodnomasters28 August 2018
Warning: Spoilers
Of the three recent H&G films, this one is certainly the best. I enjoyed the film up until I understood what was happening, and at that point the film makers couldn't bring it home. The movie looked like it was shot on the same set of "Red Riding Hood." It had medieval gadgetry including a fully automatic spear tip thrower. I felt like this was a Riding Hood companion film, just not as good in spite of Gemma's cleavage.

As famous witch hunters, H&G have their own groupies.They are hired by the mayor because of a rash of child disappearances, which we quickly find out is for a special ceremony. The dialouge was so-so. I couldn't help think of a line from LOTR when Hansel says, "Evil is upon you if you like it or not." Indeed much of the script feels like it is borrowed and written for tweens. The witches in this film are very powerful. They travel through the woods at speeds which look like "Twilight" vampires. A film for teens.

Parental Guide: F-bombs (at least 2 by Gemma Arterton) No sex. Nudity (Pihla Viitala)
0 out of 1 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
7/10
Hunting Season
kosmasp17 August 2013
I have to admit, that the movie never felt like it was dragging. The running time seems to be perfect, though I only have watched the theatrical version up to this point. I was a bit surprised that we got a bit of nudity in the movie, because Hollywood Blockbusters tend to avoid that sort of thing. Don't get too excited though (unless the extended cut offers more of that, that is).

But the movie does live off the performances. Not only the lead characters, but also the supporting cast. A twist towards the end of the movie is predictable, but still fun to watch. It's sort of roller-coaster ride. Short and fast, some will like it and some will hate it, because they might feel sick afterwords (good effects).
2 out of 3 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
7/10
Plenty of Fun in the Mix of Horror and Action Genres
gavin694216 May 2014
Hansel and Gretel (Jeremy Renner and Gemma Atherton) are bounty hunters who track and kill witches all over the world. As the fabled Blood Moon approaches, the siblings encounter a new form of evil that might hold a secret to their past.

Going into this, I was not expecting a good film or a bad one, but just your typical action film (albeit with a fairy tale twist). And then I noticed it was directed by Tommy Wirkola, the wonderful human being who brought the world "Dead Snow". My expectations and hopes went up a notch... and were fulfilled.

Apparently the film has mixed reviews from critics but positive reviews from the horror community (despite not necessarily being a horror film). I can see why. What looks like an action film on the surface is just an excuse for some dark humor and endless gallons of blood.

My only peeve was the use of CGI, but it was comforting to know that Wirkola fought against the CGI and used practical effects wherever possible. I wish he had gotten a few more traditional methods in there, but I suppose when you have a budget big enough you have to cater to some folks...

I enthusiastically liked this film and hope the sequel is able to match its style and tone.
1 out of 1 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
7/10
Proper nasty witches, warts and all.
BA_Harrison25 July 2013
Really wicked witches have been woefully under-represented in cinema over the years, with only a handful of films genuinely doing the scary old hags justice; Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters sees Norwegian writer/director Tommy Wirkola doing his utmost to raise their profile as movie monsters, offering up more malevolent, wizened, child-eating crones than you can shake a broomstick at.

With his focus clearly on the creation of these nasty witches, and their subsequent destruction by Hansel (Jeremy Renner) and Gretel (Gemma Arterton), Wirkola offers only the slightest of plots off which to hang the gory deaths, comic-book fighting, CGI effects, and numerous sneaky shots of Arterton's heaving bosom. Fortunately, for the majority of the time, Wirkola's handling of the action is slick enough to compensate for the lack of story, the weak writing only becoming really noticeable whenever there is a rare lull in pace.

It's lead female star's tightly-corseted cleavage aside, the film's most enjoyable aspect is when it occasionally shifts up a gear to OTT, bats**t crazy violence mode, the most entertaining scenes being Hansel's bonkers battle with Siamese-twin witches and troll Edward's gory head-stomping rampage, both of which have energy and imagination to spare. If this level of enthusiasm for the bizarre and the grotesque had been applied just a little more often, I might even have been declaring a new favourite...
0 out of 0 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
You have to be in the mood, and I was in the mood! Very entertaining.
TxMike25 February 2014
Warning: Spoilers
I probably would not have hunted down this DVD but I usually watch everything my public library gets, and I enjoy both Jeremy Renner and Gemma Arterton. I enjoyed it in the same way I enjoyed "Abe Lincoln, Vampire Hunter."

The most known version of the Brothers Grimm fairy tale has the stepmother convincing their dad that the kids eat too much and with a great famine at hand their only (selfish) means of survival is to take the kids into the deep forest and abandon them. After the second abandonment the kids were not able to get back home, found the gingerbread and candy house of the blind witch, were captured and fattened so that she could eat them. But she was out-foxed and they were able to throw the witch into the fire and burn her.

This movie begins with that same theme, and we see the witch burned. But most of the movie takes place when the kids had grown up and achieved a reputation as witch hunters. In fact they had destroyed hundreds of them. Jeremy Renner is the adult Hansel and Gemma Arterton is his adult sister Gretel.

But the region is now threatened by a more powerful witch, Famke Janssen as Muriel. With the upcoming blood moon which will attract many witches Hansel and Gretel have their work cut out for them. Fortunately they find Pihla Viitala as the good witch Mina. And a very large troll, Derek Mears as Edward, who had been in service to Muriel, ends up helping them.

This is just a fairy tale and if you are in the right mood can be very entertaining. I was entertained!
0 out of 0 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
8/10
This was just spectacular...
paul_haakonsen12 August 2013
Now, why was I under the impression that this would be another of those teenage lovefest movies? It couldn't have been further from the truth. Perhaps that impression came from such movies such as "Twilight" and "Red Riding Hood".

But "Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters" turned out to be somewhat of a bloody and gory action / horror movie. And it was actually a great combination that worked out quite well. A very different and interesting take on a famous fairytale.

The story is about young Hansel and Gretel who are left in the woods, where they come upon a house made of candy. They are captured by the witch inside and fed candy to fatten them up. But they end up shoving the witch into the oven and killing her. Right, we all know (or should know) this fairytale. However, this movie deals with the siblings after they grew up and became deadly witch hunters.

Right from the very beginning there was adrenaline and action in the movie, and I will say that it actually never slowed down. The movie just kept going on straight ahead like a rampant freight train.

What really impressed me in the movie was the effects and the make-up. That was just off the charts. The witches had so many interesting and nice details that the movie should be watched more than once to take it all in. There was just something profoundly dark and ghastly about them, and it worked out so well. It was a thrill and a pleasure to witness the make-up and effects of the movie.

However, the movie wasn't all about the effects and make-up. The effort and details in the costumes and props as well was just mind-boggling. The whole village really looked real and seemed like something right out of the middle ages.

Well, "Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters" isn't all just great stuff, there were parts which I didn't really fathom or could fully wrap my head around. First of all, the particular time in which the movie is set, I don't really think that the F-word was around, but oddly enough it was being thrown around quite a lot, and that really brought down the dialogue in the movie a notch. It was inappropriate and quite unnecessary with all that vulgarity and profanity. The usage of the F-word and the MF-word was really inappropriate.

Secondly, I was a bit at a loss about the costume worn by Hansel. It seemed a bit out of the age in which the movie was set as well. It was just a bit overdone and seemed like they had found it lying around discarded on a "Matrix" set. It did look great though, it just wasn't fully appropriate or matching to the age of the movie.

Finally, the weaponry - well, don't get me wrong, because it was interesting and spectacular to look at. But it seemed a little bit too advanced for the age. Yeah, I know, this is a fantasy movie, but still... Why would the weaponry technology have progressed that much, but the rest of the world was still stuck in the middle ages? It was a little bit strange. The weapons were cool to look at and were great in use on the screen, but just a tad out of place.

As for the cast in the movie, then I will say that they had put together a good ensemble of people. But it was without a doubt Famke Janssen (playing Muriel) who stole the show and totally carried the movie.

"Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters" is an action-packed and adrenaline-filled action / horror movie, and it was a real treat to watch, both story-wise and effects-wise.

And on a final note, then this movie confirmed my suspicion, Edward is a troll!
4 out of 6 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
Children's Dreams
tedg28 February 2015
Warning: Spoilers
It has been some time since I was exposed to how these things work. A clever writer can start with anything and extend it toward a known formula so that it animates that formula with a new disguise. In this world, the writers are witches.

So, one can well imagine the challenge here: target the currently popular formula: brash small group battles (with fists and old fashioned weapons) an organized army of evil. Anchor it in something known that already connects with dreams and inner fears. Implement it with noise and bravado.

The only thing of interest here is how clever were the writers.

Good witch with red hair and nudity, and who falls (but not permanently) with the guy hero? Check.

A complicated, unresolved issue with parents? Check.

Lots of story mechanics about collaborating, trust and friendship, but which preserves the individual's claim to valor? Check, whether you are a teen guy or girl.

Things set up at the end for a franchise? Of course.

I'd say the witches won this round.
5 out of 7 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
3/10
Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters
Scarecrow-886 August 2015
Warning: Spoilers
Well, good ole Hollywood takes another Grimm dark fairy tale and loads with bloated CGI effects and action set pieces. Want to see Hansel and Gretel (Jeremy Renner and Gemmer Arterton) using heavy artillery to massacre witches? Here is the perfect entertainment for you. Their parents taken from them violently as a children thanks to those evil witches (headed by a particularly loathsome but still quite attractive Famke Janssen, having too much fun when her pretty face is featured; but most of the time it's a CGI hideous visage), Hansel and Gretel have grown into hunters packing a lot of heat (the kind of machine guns, crossbows, and unfolding shotguns modified to look medieval even if they clash with the period this film is set). Hansel has a "condition" thanks to a witch's curse through a "candy poison" that requires him to inject a serum to keep him well (if he doesn't, he dies) when a timer on his arm goes off. Meanwhile, a white witch falls head over heels for Hansel, a giant troll defends and protects Gretel when she needs it the most, and Hansel and Gretel's "biggest fan" (he has followed their work, and his hero worship is enthusiastic, to say the least) ends up helping them take down their main nemesis as she is riding her broom furiously away from them through the woods (she's quite a driver, missing the branches and trees throughout). There's even a Gatling gun that makes an appearance, with the white witch just firing away at Hansel's urging, ruining a major blood moon Sabbath ritual with Gretel meant to lose her heart to the evil witches, with little chained kids also expected to be sacrificed as well. You even get Matrix stylized "freeze action" and lots of CGI bloodshed (the troll wipes out a very nasty group of villagers pummeling Gretel, using its massive fists as bludgeoning tools and a large tree as a weapon also). When witches aren't being blown away, trees endure Predator like destruction. The woods are not safe as long as the hunters and their prey are loose. Thanks to CGI, the witches are all kinds of ugly, their faces and eyes grotesque, as foul as their behavior. I'm surprised the talent involved in this rather disposable medieval action flick that really does take a giant crap on the childhood story written particularly to give us the chills. All the gunplay and martial arts (yes, the witches seem to possess the fighting skills of Jason Bourne) really are absurd. All the money wasted on this; sheesh.
1 out of 2 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
6/10
VERY uneasy mix of horror, humor and drama
preppy-34 February 2013
Siblings Hansel (Jeremy Renner) and Gretel (Gemma Arterton) are witch hunters. They're hired by the mayor of a local town where 12 children have been abducted by witches. It seems an evil powerful witch (Famke Jenssen) has them and is setting up some big ritual that will make her more powerful than any other witch.

The story is kind of vague but this was obviously heavily cut before it was released. There are plot loopholes galore and a creature named Edward appears out of nowhere and is never explained. And Hansel is (for no discernible reason) a diabetic! The horror, humor and drama never mesh together comfortably. Still this isn't a disaster. There's plenty of exciting fights and plenty of way over the top gore--but it's too silly to take seriously. There's also excellent special effects and a great score. Renner is just OK as Hansel but Arterton is excellent as Gretel. Jenssen is pretty bad--she's admitted she did it for the money--and it shows. It's not the disaster I heard it was but it's no great shakes either. I give it a 6.
1 out of 3 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
7/10
"Can I have your Autograph"
LeonLouisRicci28 August 2013
Ultra-Gory Story ripped from the pages of the Fairy Tale that is unapologetic in its Irreverence and wallows in fast Action and bloody body beatings. It is gloriously wicked and Over the Top and panders to its Target Audience delivering Profanity, Violence and Putrid Pictures with a wink and a nod.

Wild Movies like this seem, from time to time, to be unaware when things just don't work. Here there are far too many punches to the Face that are there for no apparent effect, special or otherwise. Just Dullsville. But the things that do work in this Fun and Frantic Film are enough to make it a Guilty Pleasure of Bloodletting and Ass-Kicking.

The Movie looks good and has some Humor that works, not all of it Verbal. Early on there is one Visual Joke having to do with Milk Bottles. Another bit of Anachronistic Comedy has to do with a Groupie. Overall the Movie is filled to the Frame with enough Eye-Candy to satisfy the Sweet Tooth and it's Running Time is short enough so you don't Overdose.
0 out of 2 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
4/10
Better than expected but still pretty bad
grantss13 October 2015
Not as bad as I expected, but still pretty bad. Actually has a plot, which was the biggest surprise, and there is enough intrigue in it to keep the movie going. Rest is pretty silly: the modern technology and dialogue in a medieval setting, the predictable action sequences and over-the-top special effects.

While Gemma Arterton and Jeremy Renner are good actors, they are miscast here. Both deserve something more serious, or polished at least. They both struggle to look convincing, as if they were going through the motions. Must be difficult for serious performers to apply themselves when the script is this farcical. Gemma Arterton does make the movie worth watching though...
0 out of 1 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
7/10
Scattershot Grimm fairy tale 're-imagining'
george.schmidt6 February 2013
Warning: Spoilers
HANSEL & GRETEL : WITCH HUNTERS (2013) ** Jeremy Renner, Gemma Arterton, Famke Janssen, Peter Stormare Pihla Viitala, Thomas Mann, Derek Mears, Robin Atkin Downes (voice), Zoe Bell. Scattershot Grimm fairy tale 're-imagining' with the titular victims of a witch's attempt to devour flash forward to become vigilante bounty hunters on the evil creatures while attempting to help a village plagued with kidnappings and sorcery. While the leads as siblings have zip chemistry and the try-anything-go-for-broke-anachronisms-aplenty by newbie filmmaker Tommy Wirkola is hit-and-miss the film has its appeal in at least being better than "Van Helsing" - and some not-bad on screen kills with plenty of viscera! and a sexy/scary turn by Janssen with some affective CGI and cool make-up by Twilight Creations - even the IMAX 3D doesn't truly disappoint, its the fact that this is executive produced by Will Ferrell's (!) production company that fails to get any yucks when it could've easily gone the Monty Python route.
3 out of 5 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
7/10
Ridiculous romp with squashed heads
neil-4761 March 2013
Warning: Spoilers
Hansel and Gretel, abandoned in the woods as children by their father, were able to triumph over the witch who trapped them in her house made of candy. Now grown, they make their living hunting and exterminating witches, and they are summoned to a town where a number of children have gone missing.

Jeremy Renner and Gemma Arterton have fun playing witch hunters who, quite frankly, are complete rubbish, constantly getting their *rses handed to them by a succession of witches throughout the film. It is only when they unleash a host of preposterous weapons of mass destruction (I do love me a mediaeval machine gun, not to mention a taser which doubles as a defibrillator!) that the tide finally turns.

This film tries to go for the straight-faced romp vibe of Van Helsing, but doesn't quite make it, and I'm not sure why. It might be because it is very strong – there is some extremely graphic violence here (heads exploding, people being ripped apart etc.) together with some very ripe language, making this (in my view) an unnecessarily extreme experience, thus reducing the size of its audience. Example: there comes a point when one of the siblings says, "You've got to be f***ing kidding me!" in circumstances which make the line funny: several minutes later the other sibling says exactly the same thing, and the repeat is doubly funny. But the line would have been just as funny, both times, without the profanity – I felt a lot of the extremeness was put there because the filmmakers felt it ought to be there, rather than because it added anything.

The production values are high, but something was missing and I'm not sure what it was.

There were time when things came at you, but the 3D was mostly forgettable.
1 out of 2 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
6/10
A Couple of Surprising Twists Here and There
Uriah4320 June 2015
After being abandoned in a large forest by their father, two children by the name of "Hansel" (Jeremy Renner) and "Gretel" (Gemma Arterton) stumble upon a house made of candy. Venturing inside they are captured by a witch who plans to kill them and use their hearts to conjure up a horrific spell. Fortunately, they escape and kill the evil witch in the process. It's at this time that they realize that they have a unique skill and decide to sell their services to villages beset by witchcraft. Some years later they travel to one particular town which has had eleven children recently abducted discover that the local sheriff is about to burn a young woman named "Mina" (Pihla Viitala) for being a witch. Although Hansel rescues the comely young maiden he also earns the enmity of the local sheriff as well. But that is the least of his problems. Now rather than reveal any more of this film and risk spoiling it for those who haven't seen it I will just say that this turned out to be an enjoyable action movie for the most part with a couple of surprising twists here and there. Likewise, having two attractive actresses like Gemma Arterton and Pihla Viitala certainly didn't hurt either. Slightly above average.
0 out of 0 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
5/10
Sibling Assassins
ferguson-627 January 2013
Greetings again from the darkness. The movie begins with a tip of the cap to the Brothers Grimm fairy tale and then spins off into what would be just another episode of TV's "Once Upon a Time", were it a cable rather than a network show.

The original fairy tale is a nightmare for most kids (probably explains why it's one of my favorites). Hansel and Gretel are deserted in the forest by their parents, and end up at a scrumptious house of candy owned by a witch who eats children. The movie puts an interesting spin on why the parents got rid of the kids, but mostly this story begins after Hansel and Gretel outsmart the candy house witch. This leads them into a joint career of bounty-hunting for witches.

Jeremy Renner (The Hurt Locker, The Avengers) plays Hansel and Gemma Arterton (Tamara Drewe, Bond Girl in Casino Royale) plays Gretel. They have some pretty nifty weapons given that it's the middle ages. Mostly they take turns getting the stuffing kicked out of them by witches and jealous sheriffs.

There is a good witch and bad witch element as well as a discovery of their childhood roots. That said, the plot and story are secondary thanks to writer/director Tommy Wickola who seems to find the most joy in exploding witch heads and bodies. The 3D seems pretty sloppy and forced with no added benefit. A couple of humorous additions involve Hansel's struggle with diabetes (thanks to the candy house), the missing kid notices on milk bottles, and the multi-dimensional troll Edward ... he's no Shrek, but it doesn't take much personality to stand out here.

Will Ferrell and Adam McKay are listed as producers and that explains the attempts at humor throughout. It's too bad the overkill on gore and profanity prevent this from being an intelligent spin off from one of the best ever fairy tales.
3 out of 9 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
7/10
Hansel & Gretel:Witch Hunters-The Theatrical Cut.
morrison-dylan-fan7 December 2014
Warning: Spoilers
With a friend having recently named her new cat Hansel,I decided to search around for a Hansel and Gretel-related movie that she could watch during the Christmas period.Taking a look at IMDb's Horror board,I noticed a post which mentioned a film that had taken a Horror-Fantasy approach to the tale,which led to me getting ready to go hunting for witches.

The plot:

Finding themselves getting left alone in the woods by their dad,Hansel and his sister Gretel spot a house made of gingerbread.Entering the house,Hansel & Gretel are gripped by a witch who holds them hostage.Desperate to escape,they both fight back and kill the witch,via shoving her in the oven (what charmers!)

Years later:

Since having cooked some roast witch,Hansel & Gretel have become witch hunters,with their aim in life being to visit every town,and kill every witch in the area.Entering a small town called Augsburg,Hansel and Gretel discover that the villagers are starting to accusing almost everyone of being a witch. Initially expecting their time in Augsburg to involve a traditional killing,Hansel & Gretel soon discover that the witches have other plans for them.

View on the film:

Showing a real bravery in not taking the easy family friendly route,writer/director Tommy Wirkola and cinematographer Michael Bonvillain cast a splatter-soaked Horror spell across the film,with Hansel & Gretel's rapid-fire action scenes being matched by headless witches and deadly wounds getting splashed on the movie.Along with the exciting action and gleeful horror shocks,Wirkola uses rusting,fading colours to give the title a surprising Steam Punk Fairy Tale atmosphere.

Jumping from the original Brothers Grimm tale within the first 10 minutes,Wirkola gives the characters wonderful added additions,with Hansel's diabetic problems (which the studio sadly got Wirkola to trim down) giving the character a real weakness,and also showing the effects of Hansel's visit to the Brothers Grimm sweet house! Whilst not giving her the delightful off-beat weaknesses of her brother,Wirkola combines Gretel's sharp action chops with an enchanting fairy tale side,which reveals itself as Gretel closes in on their latest target.

Entering the movie in super-tight leather,the ravishing Gemma Arterton (who for some reason puts on (an admittedly good) fake US accent-despite the film being set in Europe!) gives an excellent performance as Gretel,thanks to Arterton looking extremely sexy in the thrilling fight scenes,and also casting a wide smile across Gretel's face,as she beheads one witch after the other.Joining Arterton,Jeremy Reener gives a very good,brisk performance as Hansel,whose action bite Renner connects with a warm,quirky side,as Hansel & Gretel get ready to break every witches spell..and neck.
0 out of 1 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
9/10
Highly enjoyable if slightly flawed take on the story
kannibalcorpsegrinder6 August 2015
Having turned themselves into formidable bounty-hunters, the brother-and-sister duo find themselves summoned to a village beset by child kidnappings and witch activity and uncover the mystical connection between them and the strange activity in town.

This one was quite the exciting and enjoyable variant on the story with a lot to like. What turns it on the most is the fact that there's a rather large sampling here of action that proves their worthiness and capabilities at their goal, which sets them up as skilled professionals accomplished at their job rather than being told they're great because that's the way the story is supposed to unfold. Being given access to their kind of weaponry and defensive tactics, from spreading razor-wire between trees most identifiable as escape routes, whips, knives and spells as well as their physical brawling, there's a lot to like here about this which is set through the film's rather fun pace here. This one tends to go through a rather large amount of time here battling the witches and the different helpers along the way, making for the fun of their first forest encounter after being hired where they beat off the lone witch, the spectacular assault on the town where the witches bombard the village and homes with explosive fireballs, the chaos and panic hides the brawling quite well and there's the rescue attempts that come up rather fun as well providing this with a great scene that's really filled with action. There's also the massive forest encounter here, from the lead-up to the mountain-top hideout where they hold the big gathering for the other witches there, the huge gunfight that wipes out most of them and then the big hand-to-hand battles that lead into the forest escape into the final brawl back in the cottage which makes for quite an action-packed time here. All of these are rather enjoyable with lots of spectacle, great make-up for the different witches and their powers that come off rather nicely and plenty of bloody kills here to make for an even better time here with these all combining together to give this one a lot to like. There's not a whole lot here that doesn't really work, as all that does come up seems to be the fact that this one never really pays off much in terms of connecting them to the fairytale beyond the opening sequence in the candy-house which is played off nicely, but seems to be more of an after-thought here in terms of how they're supposed to be the same people. This causes the middle of the film to turn into a rather irritating series of scenes where they're completely at odds with everyone around them constantly worrying about each other if they're out of the others' line-of-sight, keeping these scenes rather clichéd and familiar due to the constant repetition of these scenes. Still, this one was overall quite fun.

Rated R: Graphic Violence, Graphic Language, Brief Nudity and children- in-jeopardy.
0 out of 0 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
8/10
Exciting funny story with lost of action
phd_travel5 August 2013
Warning: Spoilers
The story is quite a humorously written action version of the Hansel and Gretel fairytale. The original fairytale gets covered quickly with the house made of candy and the witch. Fast forward to the pair of adult witch slayers. Liked the modern dialog thrown in eg the fan stuff. Also the weapons were inventive with the version of modern guns. The explanation of the parents story is clever and the troll and good witches complete the plot well.

The violence makes this one for only older teens upwards. It has lost of killings and lots of fighting - maybe too much punching and kicking and exploding bodies. Still not as graphically violent as a Quentin movie. The witches are a refreshing villain - we have had too many zombies and vampires. Their powers seemed way too strong though.

I always thought Famke Janssen is more suited to the villain role and she is well cast here as the evil witch. Gemma is quite suited to her tomboyish role. Jeremy Renner is a strange pick. Someone a bit more leading man looking would have been a better choice.

Overall worth a watch for more mature audiences.
1 out of 1 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
9/10
Kick axx continuation of the sylvan fairy tale about slaying diabolical witches
Wuchakk10 May 2019
In Medieval Germany, Hansel & Gretel (Jeremy Renner & Gemma Arterton) are now adults and formidable witch slayers, not to mention considered heroes in the community. When numerous children turn-up missing, they trace the problem to an unholy celebration orchestrated by a grand witch (Famke Janssen). Fetching Pihla Viitala plays a redhead villager accused of witchcraft.

"Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters" (2013) is a dark fantasy/action/comedy/horror that takes the German fairy tale by the Brothers Grimm and envisions events about twenty years later. Imagine the excellent "Season of the Witch" (2011) meshed with the fantasy elements of the fable and you'd have a good idea of this movie. "Dracula Untold" (2014) and "Snow White and the Huntsman" (2012) are good contemporary associations, but "Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters" is noticeably superior.

This movie just kicks total axx from beginning to end with Gemma jaw-dropping as the take-no-sheet heroine and Renner rising to the challenge. The witches are ee-vil and worthy of nothing other than immediate slaughter, which is basically the siblings' modus operandi. There's a lot of thrilling action and gore, some of it so over-the-top it's amusing; there's even a terrible troll. And the movie LOOKs great. If you like dark woodsy adventure and don't mind fantasy, don't miss out on this excellent film.

The film is doesn't overstay its welcome at 1 hour, 28 minutes; and was fittingly shot completely in Germany.

GRADE: A
0 out of 0 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
An error has occured. Please try again.

See also

Awards | FAQ | User Ratings | External Reviews | Metacritic Reviews


Recently Viewed