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Revenge is sweeter than candy
Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters (DVD)
Member Name: carlz2001uk
Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters (DVD)
Advantages: Good cast
Disadvantages: Bland, boring, could have done better.
Watching a few movies on my longhaul flight at the weekend made the time pass by quickly, although the film choice wasn't perhaps what I would have chosen. Hansel & Gretel was the most obvious choice for me out of the four available. I hadn't fancied it at the cinema but knew I would most likely catch it at some point. I had hoped that the film would be really dark and haunting in a way, however this wasn't to be and despite no links with Disney at all, I sat down to watch this very 'Disneyfied' film.
In a new spin on the classic fairy tale, Hansel & Gretel are now all grown up and are bounty hunters, earning plenty of gold and notoriety along the way. In the beginning, the film is told mirror image as the fable, the two stumble across the house made from candy and after beating their captor, an incredibly ugly witch, they spend their lives searching for retribution and saving children captured by the evil witches across the land. The story is bulked up somewhat by the witches that they are chasing, turning their heels and doing the chasing.
To be perfectly honest, this film doesn't have an awful lot going for it. I spent several minutes trying to expand upon the synopsis part of the review, however there really isn't that much more to add. Add to the pretty basic storyline, is the feel of a very much recycled film. It feels like a copy of several films, the chase scenes and the way they leap up the trees feels like Twilight, the set feels like Little Red Riding Hood and the story, well we all know that's been copied.
One of the only thing that kept me going through to the end, is the cast. The cast comprises mostly of Jeremy Renner and Gemma Arterton, yes there are a few faces that you may recognise but glancing at the cast list, I certainly didn't recognise any other names. Renner seems to be a golden boy in Hollywood in recent years, and despite not being 'Hollywood handsome', he does seem to have something about him that makes him right for these kind of action films. He is certainly believable as Hansel, although it is a far cry from the film that shot him to fame, Hurt Locker. Arterton is a good choice as Hansel, and again, believable. She isn't overshadowed by Renner and can hold her own in this big role, most likely one of her largest in a big budget film since she made her mark on the industry in The Disappearance of Alice Creed. The two gel well together and look good together although with the over use of leather and the odd looks at each other, I did expect them to start kissing in several parts of the film (which would have been weird!).
With an estimated $50 million budget, the producers are already in the black after earning nearly $60 million at the box office, and the film is yet to be released on DVD. It's a decent return so far and at least it's not a loss, but I do wonder where the $50 million went. Yes its heavy on CGI, and although I was watching on a small plane headrest TV which was hardly the sharpest of quality, I do remember realising that the effects weren't amazing. They weren't bad per se, but they weren't blow your mind wow either. I suspect Renners salary had something to do with the large budget, but I may be wrong.
I did notice one or two goofs, but not nearly as many as I expected, with such a lazy and predictable storyline I expected far more.
This predictable and extremely average film was like a jigsaw puzzle already done for you. Watch if you really feel the need to, or if you need to kill some time, but don't expect anything beyond 'okay'.
Summary: 2 stars