“Gretel and Hansel” Review

Alexis Kieninger, Staff Reporter

Design by: Haili Smith

“Gretel & Hansel” came out Jan. 31, 2020. Imagine my surprise when I found out they were recreating the Brothers Grimm tale yet again. By Feb. 2, I had my tickets and was ready to see the film. However, in no way was it what I was expecting. 

It had a weak plot line and it lacked transitioning scenes as well. Resulting in my constant state of confusion. Although, it was not all bad. The movie had a strong female lead who took care of her brother. “Gretel and Hansel” also presented the audience with a strong and fulfilling ending. In my opinion, it just was not enough to make the film worth spending money on. 

SPOILERS are ahead. 

For those of you who are not familiar with the classic Brothers Grimm tale, it goes like this. A woodchopper’s wife ditches his kids (Hansel and Gretel) in the woods to fend for themselves. As the kids attempt to navigate the woods, they get lost and begin to starve. Then they find a house made of bread. The children begin to consume the house when the witch who lives inside comes out to confront them. She invites them inside for a feast, having the ulterior motive of fattening them up to eat. Gretel realizes what she is doing, and tricks the witch into getting into the oven and kills her. Hansel and Gretel steal the witches jewels and go back home to their father. 

The film however, twisted the story. While some points worked out rather well and added to the horror element, others were not cohesive with the plot line and left me confused. 

As the story progresses, the siblings’ mom kicks them out and they begin their journey in the woods. Like the original story, they continue to grow lost and starve as they delve deeper into the forest. 

As they continue exploring the woods, the plot gets foggy. For example, a pointless, five minute scene of the pair laughing at each other then puking because they accidently got high on mushrooms.

Finally after all the suspense, the siblings meet the witch. They stumble upon a sleek black modern house. They peer in the windows and see a feast. Which Gretel later discovers is body parts of dismembered children, disguised to look like food. While this strays far from the original tale of the bread house with sugar windows, it fits somewhat well because Gretel’s character is very cautious and would see it as very suspicious. 

The plot thickens and scenes become less cohesive. There are scenes of Hansel sharpening axes and trying to chop down trees. While the witch is helping Gretel discover that she has “powers.” These non-cohesive scenes do not fall into the storyline at all. 

Throughout this process, the witch manages to distance Gretel from Hansel and hide him away from her. When Gretel begins to realize what happens, the whole plot line is revealed. 

The witch stayed young forever and only disguises herself as an old lady to draw kids closer to eat them. Eating children is what fuels her powers. She tells Gretel she needs to eat Hansel to unlock her powers. 

Gretel refuses and manages to kill the witch and save Hansel. 

In the end, Gretel stays at the witch’s house to further learn how to use her powers. Hansel goes back to their old house. Much like the original story, he takes witches jewels to use as a form of currency. 

In my brutally honest opinion, this movie is not worth any time. However, if you decide this movie does sound enticing, I would recommend renting it and not spending more money on a ticket. The choice is yours.