On Sept. 4, Paramount Pictures released its first trailer for “Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters,” the updated take on the fairy tale associated with the Brothers Grimm. Jeremy Renner and Gemma Aterton star as the titled characters, the adults who survived their candy-coated encounter with a witch.
The “Hansel & Gretel” trailer immediately establishes the characters as adults working through their childhood traumas by fighting witches.
As might be expected, Renner gets a lot of time in the trailer. It uses his reputation rising action star thanks to his performances in Marvel’s “The Avengers” and “The Bourne Legacy,” to promote the movie and indicate its genre.
In keeping with its action-oriented mode, both Hansel and Gretel (Renner and Arterton) seek to track down a witch (Famke Jannsen) accused of kidnapping children. Talk about setting off the pair’s issues.
But perhaps the witch isn’t the cause of all the trouble, and there are other monsters afoot? The trailer suggests things aren’t quite what they at first appear when the siblings go on the hunt. Then again, things – and people – seldom are in fairy tales.
What does seem clear from the “Hansel & Gretel” trailer, which can also be seen via Apple Trailers, is this fantasy-horror-thriller casts itself along the the lines of a revenge-driven romp served with a side of justice.
The trailer shows off Hansel and Gretel as well equipped for their chosen profession. It features an impressive selection of firearms, with which Renner and Arterton demonstrate an equally impressive proficiency. What’s more, the weaponry on display is just this side of steampunk and is carefully complemented by the pair’s fashionably black uniforms.
The trailer also suggests “Hansel & Gretel” is a action-fantasy flick stylistically in line with “Van Helsing” and “Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter.” Thankfully, there are also hints that the movie offers more humor and a stronger sense of fun.
Overall, “Hansel & Gretel” meets expectations for fans of Norwegian director Tommy Wirkola. Wirkola is known for his B-movie Nazi-zombie horror comedy “Død Snø” (“Dead Snow”), whose style runs to dark humor with over-the-top horror and gore.
“Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters” will be released Jan. 11, 2013. As the movie’s title and trailer suggests, it isn’t particularly aimed at children, although the film does not yet have its MPAA rating.
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