Millennium Post

Fairy tale gone bad

Wisely, Bruder Grimms put an end to Hansel and Gretel when they killed the witch and escaped their gingerbread house. Trust Hollywood to look beyond that wisdom and  come up with a theory: that the brother and sister duo took up witch hunting as profession when they grew up.

Perhaps it could have pulled it off had it not settled for such clichéd storytelling. For one, it has Jeremy Renner, who took over the Bourne mantel effortlessly from Matt Damon, playing Hansel. He tries very hard, by the way, but there is no salvation in sight for the siblings as they go about butchering witches.

In this fairy tale revival, we are told that the siblings are actually born to a witch, but the good kind – they call them white witches in the film. And a coven of ‘black’ witches, lead by Muriel (played by Famke Janssen), is preparing for a ritual called Blood Moon. For which they need a white witch’s heart – which Gretel (played by Gemma Arterton) conveniently is. The siblings bring the long drawn battle to an end with the help of their respective beaus. In Gretel’s case, she has an ally in a troll (played by Derek Mears and a wannabe witch hunter (Thomas Mann). And it turns out that Hansel’s love interest Mina (played by Pihla Viitala) is certainly no damsel in distress.

Just in case you think all these make for interesting twists and turns, banish the thought. Director Tommy Wirkola’s narrative has this gingerbread house crumbling in no time. By now we are so used to 3D ploys that those flying weapons hardly create a dent. To make matters worse, the plot is ridden with inconsistencies. On one hand you have cackling witches with claws for hands, and on the other, machine and stun guns!

Recommended only if gore and twisted fairy tales are up your ally.
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