Hansel and Gretel – South Korea, 2007, reviews

 

Hansel and Gretel (헨젤과 그레텔) is a 2007 South Korean horror feature film.

The movie opens with pictures from a storybook of Hansel and Gretel. The scene then switches to Eunsu, a salesman, driving his car along Highway 69 while talking to his girlfriend, Haeyoung, on the phone. Haeyoung is four weeks pregnant and tells him to come be by her side for the remainder of the pregnancy. But he tells her that his mother is ill and he has to visit her.

They quarrel as Eunsu is driving causing him to hit a rock. The car flips over throwing him out of it and he passes out. When he wakes up he finds himself stranded in a dark forest. He gets up and tries to find his way through the woods but soon falls unconscious again. When he finally wakes up again, he sees a light that turns out to be the light from a lantern that a young girl is carrying. She helps him up and as they walk to her house, introduces herself as Younghee. She leads him to a large house in the middle of the forest called the “House of Happy Children”.

Reviews [click links to read more]:

Hansel & Gretel has all the irrational wish-fulfilment, not to mention the happy ending, of a children’s story, but at the same time it exposes a more adult perspective on exploited innocence, desperate dreams and broken lives, so that the viewer is caught, much like the arrested Eun-soo, in a forest of somnambulistic images and uneasy ideas’. Eye for Film

Hansel and Gretel stands as one of the most interesting and unsettling Korean films of the year, and is a work of considerable imagination. Difficult to categorise, whilst it may disappoint genre fans expecting blood or overt scares, it frightens far more effectively through its depiction of innocence abused and of the worst of human nature.’ Beyond Hollywood

Film4 review

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