Fairy tales have become increasingly common fodder for horror films in the recent years. Red Riding Hood, Snow White and the Huntsman, and the most recent Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters have all tried to cash in on the fairy tale craze. Hansel and Gretel Get Baked adds to that crowd while also trying to appeal to another crowd: stoners.
Hansel and Gretel Get Baked follows brother and sister, Hansel and Gretel obviously. The latter’s stoner boyfriend happens upon some magically good weed and goes missing when he tracks down the lady selling the stuff. Gretel and begrudging Hansel go on the search for her lost boyfriend and inevitably run into some trouble when the woman turns out to be a witch who’s eating stoners in order to make herself younger. You would think she could find some healthier options than pot-smoking teenagers, but to each their own.
None of the actors are particularly bad, but Molly Quinn’s Gretel stands head and shoulders above the rest of the cast. The film would have been a lot more successful if she was given more screen time. She got her fair share as part of the title duo, but instead of letting her carry the story, we’re subjected to the side stories of characters we don’t care about. There’s the drug dealer, his enemies, and even the electrical company all take away from what could have been Hansel and Gretel duking it out with the witch. We even get to meet the drug dealer’s stoner-girlfriend, who’s dumb enough to eat candy off of basement floors, that can somehow read palms just to let the audience know that the witch is really, really old.
The main thing that actually surprised me was the level of gore. It’s nothing revolutionary, but we get a skinned dude, some slit throats, and a head chopped in half by a shovel that made a smile creep across my face. Other than that, HGGB failed to impress. It never really found an identity throughout its runtime. Even though pot is its central conceit, it can’t really be defined as much of a stoner movie. It’s also never scary, and a lot of the comedy fell flat. Another gripe, although extremely minor, is why didn’t this movie come out nearer to 4/20? When you’re pandering to the stoner crowd, wouldn’t that maximize the appeal of seeing a movie like this?
When a movie is titled ‘Hansel and Gretel Get Baked’, a large amount of expectations are thrown right out the window and this film didn’t prove me wrong for doing so. While the final product might not be down to quite the level of what SyFy puts out, that comparison should be enough for you to understand the quality of this film. It ends up being along the lines of a “high brow SyFy”, but not something you’d expect to see getting a release under a label like Tribeca.
If you really like smoking pot and watching low-grade horror films geared toward you, than I guess this movie will make you happy. Maybe being stoned actually makes the film better. Otherwise, it might be advisable to skip this one altogether.