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DVD Review: Hansel & Gretel: Warriors of Witchcraft

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At first glance it may seem that Hansel & Gretel: Warriors of Witchcraft is just an obvious attempt to capitalize on the upcoming theatrical release, Hansel and Gretel Witch Hunters. And it is, sorta.

The straight-to-DVD teen-centered film is set to be released (on January 22) just three days before the big-screen, more grown-up Hansel and Gretel Witch Hunters, starring Jeremy Renner as Hansel and Gemma Arterton as Gretel, is set to be released in theaters. But Hansel & Gretel: Warriors of Witchcraft has more in common with films like The Craft and the recently cancelled CW series The Secret Circle. This film is all about the horrors of high school cliques, with some supernatural elements like witchcraft and covens thrown in to jazz things up.

[Ella (Fivel Stewart) investigates her family’s history as witch hunters.]

Twin teens Jonah (Booboo Stewart, The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Parts 1 & 2) and Ella (Fivel Stewart, The O.C.) are sent to an elite school in Salem, Massachusetts. Once there they are thrown in with the usual assortment of mean kids and teen cliques. One group, which isn’t just a clique, but a coven, seems set on recruiting Jonah to join, while Ella meanwhile tries to unravel the dark secrets behind the secret society.

A sympathetic teacher, Ms. Keegan (Vanessa Angel, Hall Pass, Weird Science), and the ever-lurking headmaster (Eric Roberts, The Dark Knight, The Expendables) are both keeping a close eye on the new arrivals, but maybe with differing agendas. Cherie Currie (The Runaways, Foxes) is also on hand as another teacher, Ms. Thoman.

The two soon discover that they are descended from a long line of witch slayers, starting with Hansel and Gretel, and they may have to step up to the plate and use their heritage to protect themselves and others at the school – if they can stop working against each other.

DVD special features include commentary with director David DeCoteau (House of Usher, The Frightening) and the cast, a well as a stills gallery. The the sound is 2.0 stereo and subtitles are available in Spanish. The video format is 16×9 widescreen (2.40:1). Hansel & Gretel: Warriors of Witchcraft has a total running time of 90 minutes and the film is rated PG-13 For some violence.

The film has definitely more of a Gossip Girl vibe than similarly themed television shows like Buffy the Vampire Slayer or the more recent Grimm. It should be entertaining for the tween/teen set, who will relate to the high school shenanigans. But with the slow pace – the movie takes its time setting things up and establishing suspense before any real action happens – and the lack of any real romance or terror, Hansel & Gretel: Warriors of Witchcraft is watchable, but also quickly forgettable.

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  • yolana

    this movie is such a copy cat of the new hansel and gretel movie coming out. this movie is probabl going to be the worst movie, not to mention the obvious low budget filming and bad acting

  • noneofyourbusiness

    I read a review about this movie on another site. it was harsh, yet so true. Also, why can`t Fivel be in her own movies? She always has to be in a movie with her brother or if not that, her brother can`t be in a movie without her making an appearance (aka, White Frog, Logan). Also, in an interview a couple years ago, she said she was an actress, and yet the only movie she actually spoke a line in was Logan, and that was one line! And she calls herself an Actress -.-She`s so annoying! This is why everyone thinks they`re dating! They are always together!!! So Fivel should do herself a favor and and become famous her own way instead of feeding off of her brother`s fame.

  • SharonCod

    I watched this recently and thought it would be much better as a tv series line Buffy the Vampire Slayer. That film was also slated as very bad but tv series was brilliant. The problem with this film was the screens between each scene. The woman in the green trousers most walked up the path numerous times. If u watch this film u will understand. It would have been better to take it slowly over a series of tv shows rather than rush. It should gave been darker too as u will need sun glasses to watch it.

  • disgusted guy

    I actually paid good money for the dvd,thinking it was a real movie,instead I found I had purchased the biggest pile of ‘dirt’ in existance,from the blimp with the silver bag entering the school no less than 7 times,to the stupid editing of the whole thing,the centre hall looked more like saddleback community college and contains no hispanic designs what so ever,so why include that shot all the way through.As for the acting,well,wet and limp at best.I hate that I was suckered into buying this dvd.It should even be out there.

  • so bad in every way

    How absolutely dreadful this was. Laughable at every turn. Cardboard acting and the direction was something that was worthy of a good flailing. The extras were a case of cut and paste – they should have been paid in Weetabix – well the better ones should have been anyway. Frizzy hair guy, pink rucksack girl and orange teen were omnipotent. I would love to know what those two girls, standing cross-legged in both schools, were talking about every day of the week – did they ever go for that wee? I can only guess that ‘the Stewart’s’ dad paid for a ‘vanity’ production for his kids. My eight-year-old daughter is more convincing as Gollum than any of the cast as witches or witch hunters – truly appalling waste of everyone’s time. Should be removed from shelves as soon as possible.

  • Spillage Griffiths

    One of the worst movies I have ever seen! The complete EVERYTHING, was terrible! From the acting, direction, “effects” to the repetitive shots of the college, and the black kid with the massive, massive hairstyle, aimlessly wandering about in the background, (Once or twice, even wearing a hat to disguise said MASSIVE hairstyle!)
    Overall? Worse than a 12 year old’s Youtube video made on an iPhone! Seriously! The sound was recorded direct to camera, and the musical score was taken from an episode of Kojak! Absolute crap!