Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters
We all know the fairytale of Hansel & Gretel, how as little children they were left behind in the forest, found a house made of candy, inhabited by a witch who wanted to make them fat and then eat them, and how they finally managed to beat her and escape. But what happened afterwards to the little rascals? Well, that’s what we get to see in Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters!
As the title suggests, the two have kept a bad taste in their mouth after their first encounter with a witch and therefore decided to professionally rid the world of these creatures. For the right price of course! As such they arrive in a village that’s plagued by witches while the local sheriff (Peter Stormare again in a supporting role, the man truly is popular these days!) doesn’t succeed in offering even the slightest resistance.
Hansel & Gretel quickly find out that it’s three witches instead of one that are terrorising the town, but what they don’t realise is that the leader of the pack, an again seductive Famke Janssen, knows more about their past than they themselves and that she has plans with the two that would turn their future to the worse…
Witch Hunters brings us the ancient Grimm fairytale and puts it in a new jacket that continues where the original story ended, and adds some comedy underneath the skin of the action making the whole things lightly digestable and entertaining.
Director Tommy Wirkola (Dead Snow) succeeds to creat an atmosphere that reminds of Van Helsing (but with witches) and with Jeremy Renner (the new Bourne) and Bond girl Gemma Atertain in the lead we get a nice spectacle served that goes in as easily and tasty as a decent spaghetti bolognaise. No top cuisine but decent food that stills the appetite.
We’re used to getting top quality in image and sound from Paramount and also Hansel & Gretel doesn’t disappoint in this regards. The colors are bright, the level of detail is high, and the opening credits show that a 3D version was kept in mind as we get to see layer after laying flowing in each other and even while this is the 2D version that we tested: it still looks good!
Also the sound does its job well: there are almost no quiet moments and while the dialogues never get into trouble there’s plenty of action coming through the speakers. The combat is of course filled with effects, but even during the calmer moments when there’s less going on on the screen there’s plenty of action audio-wise. Fun!
Where we get an overload of effects in the sound, the extra’s are quite a bit less impressive. Only three features are included, but luckily they’re not too promotional.
First up is “Reinventing Hansel & Gretel” in which the cast & crew talk about how the original story by the brothers Grimm was extended to a witch hun and what drove people to particpating to this movie. Then it’s time for “The Witching Hours” which lasts just under ten minutes and gives information on how they tried to making the witches look unlike any we’ve seen before. Especially the transformation of Famke Janssen of course is featured but beware as it also contains spoilers so best not to check this out before the movie!
Last but not least we get to see how the troll Edward was brought to life in the five minute feature “Meet Edward the Troll”.