‘Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters’ ~ the skinny

Muriel, the Bad Witch after Gretel's pure heart (Famke Janssen)

Muriel, the Bad Witch after Gretel’s pure heart (Famke Janssen)

There is only one word for Hansel & Gretel: Witches! They are fierce! They are fearless! They ride the cadillac of brooms and are masters of hand-to-hand combat. They are as beautiful as they are ugly, but each witch is a force to be reckoned with! The fight scenes between them and the Hunters alone are worth a run to theater.

Tommy Wirkola directs a pretty good fantasy as he imagines a back story on the classic fairy tale. In addition to his exploration of the socio-cultural dynamic of the rumor mill once it is unleashed within a small town, Wirkola, too, imagines why mom (Kathrin Kuhnel)  & pop (Thomas Scharff) decided to take their children to the forest and what became of Hansel (Jeremy Renner) and Gretel (Gemma Aterton) after they save themselves and burn the witch (Monique Ganderton) in her own oven in the gingerbread/candy house. All grown up now, H&G have mined a celebrated reputation as witch hunters. Wirkola might have worked in a collage of flashbacks to give some idea as to how they made it from 10 or 12 year-old children to very skillful adult hunters.

Quite revealing, however, is that the witch hunt is the hunt for mature and/or single powerful women who have magic; they live by themselves on the outskirts of town deep deep into the verdant forest apparently minding their own business! What makes them prey is their magic (if not, H&G’s revenge for their childhood trauma), and, even more dangerous, they appear human but will turn into something-or-other and hiss and grunt at you.  When the evil Muriel kidnaps children, every witch is in danger–you will pinpoint the historical tie-ins.

See the movie and enjoy. There’s even an adorable Troll named Edward (Derek Mears) lumbering about the forest.

Witch 4

In the meantime, watch for film television & more to come!
“I insist,” says the witch!

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