At The Movies This Week, 8th March 2013
At The Movies
Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters ★★
Director: Tommy Wirkola
Cast: Jeremy Renner, Gemma Arterton, Famke Janssen, Pihla Vitala
A young Hansel and Gretel who, as the Brothers Grimm fairy tale goes, are coaxed into a house made of ginger bread and after a close encounter, then burn the witch in her oven. A spin on the classic fairy tale, Hansel and Gretel are now grown up and full-fledged witch hunters.
In a town in Germany, something is hunting children and taking them away from their families. Hansel (Jeremy Renner) and Gretel (Gemma Arterton) come in, hired by the Mayor to take out Grand Witch Muriel (Famke Janssen).
The storyline has a lot left to be desired but moves along at a quick pace. There are a few good uses of 3D and plenty of scenes filled with action and blood splattering moments.
Renner and Arterton have some natural screen presence, while director Tommy Wirkola brings a decent degree of nice camerawork to the screen and visual trappings. Anyone who’s seen “Dead Snow” will know Wirkola is not afraid to use lots of blood splatter.
“Hansel and Gretel” is a thoroughly entertaining film with a few funny moments. This is prime stuff for B-movie fans.
Director: Chan- wook Park
Cast: Mia Wasikowska, Matthew Goode, Nicola Kidman, Dermot Mulroney, Alden Ehrenreich, Jacki Weaver
When 18 year old, India Stoker’s father dies in an accident, her uncle comes to stay. But everything is not all as it seems. India is a strange girl who doesn’t fit in, is estranged from her mother and bullied at school. India slowly uncovers the truth about Uncle Charlie and his dark secrets, she forms an unusual bond and unexpectedly finds herself drawn to him. Each character becomes crazier as time goes on and they each suspect each other of being up to no good within reason.
Wasikowska plays something a bit different from her character in “Alice In Wonderland” and plays a troubled young woman quite well, Kidman is brilliant as the unstable mother and Goode is nothing but not wonderfully creepy and charming as the uncle. Some of the other actors are slightly underused and only seem to be in the film to serve little purpose.
Directed by South Korea’s Chan-wook Park, the visionary director who created such movies as “Oldboy,” this time brings his first Hollywood film to the big screen.
Beautifully shot and wonderfully edited, “Stoker” is a dark coming of age film filled with sexual tension and plenty of creepy imagery.