Yet another retelling of a classic fairy tale with modern flourishes,
this time with Hansel (Jeremy Renner) and Gretel (Gemma Arterton) as
sibling bounty hunters who travel the land dispatching witches with
style and flair until they discover that the biggest and baddest witch
(Famke Janssen) has been setting a trap for them.
A pompous philandering author, his dutifully long-suffering wife, a handsome groundskeeper and the titular young journalist (Gemma Arterton) constitute the foundation of this Stephen Frears adaptation of a graphic novel by Posy Simmonds. The ever-reliable Frears fashions this material into a dependable comedy with classic rather than typically broad Hollywood sensibilities, despite the inherent possibilities for misplaced mass appeal. Grade: B.