STARRING: Jeremy Renner, Gemma Arterton, Famke Janssen, Peter Stormare, Zoe Bell
DIRECTED BY: Tommy Wirkola
It doesn’t matter how I feel, or how you feel. This film is getting a sequel. The tales of Hansel and Gretel will continue, you can sleep easy. It’s the new Underworld. The thing is, the first Underworld was actually pretty good. The sequels devolved, but the original was a good starting point. This franchise? The original isn’t solid enough to launch a thousand ships.
Hansel (Jeremy Renner) and Gretel (Gemma Arterton) are witch hunters (Duh) who are brought to a small village after most of their children are taken by witches. They investigate the situation, and find out that the head witch behind this (Famke Janssen) has some seriously dubious plans, involving her ability to not be affected by fire. They also find out more about themselves, and why they are the only two who can’t be touched by witches spells. Trolls are involved too.
It’s a pretty simple plot. The film doesn’t even run 90 minutes, so it can’t get too involved. It’s a by-the-numbers supernatural film with OK special effects, and almost no character development. Hansel and Gretel are introduced as badasses and remain badasses. There is barely a “trial by fire” for them, so to speak. And the supporting cast? Ummm…. who? They might as well just be cardboard cutouts, because you won’t care about any of them.
There’s a low level of fun to be had here, and because the film is so short, it’s virtually impossible to be bored for more than a few seconds. While it isn’t many things, it definitely is fast paced. Not a lot of exposition, no long dialogue scenes, mostly the film is comprised of action sequences. I just wish there was more story, and more character development. That could have made for a much better film.
FINAL GRADE: C-