Starring: Chun Jung-Myung, Eun Won-Jae, Shim Enu-Kyung
Director: Hum Phil-Sung
Studio: CJ Entertainment (Korea)
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About This DVD
A reckless youngster Eun-soo drives to his mother's and has a car accident. When Eun-soo wakes up, he meets amysterious girl and is led to her fairytale-like house in the middle of the forest. There, Eun-soo is trapped with the girl and her siblings who never age. Soon he learns all the adults who visited or stayed in the houese have met mysterious yet terrible ends. More shockingly, their cruel deaths are drawn in details and made into a fairytale book by the children. Scared Eun-soo tries to find the way out, but the house is secluded in the forest with no way out. And then, Eun-soo discovers a book which tells a brutal end of none other than himself...
The palpable darker edges create tension early on and keep the viewers captivated. The child actors admirably sensed the particular atmosphere of the film and their awareness - in combination with acting skills - is another highly beneficial factor to the collaborative achievement that is "Hansel and Gretel".
The oldest of the three children is a boy with paranormal abilities played by Eun Won-jae. The oldest girl is portrayed by Sim Eun-kyeong and the youngest girl is a role by Jin Ji-hee. When the adult protagonist ? played by Cheon Jeong-myeong ? encounters them for the first time, the children seem to be family, however, a rather unconventional one.
The children immediately feel close with the man and after the mysterious disappearance of their 'parents', the children subtly steer him into a father role, even though he repeatedly insist on leaving because of his own family. Along with the man we discover the secrets behind the children, their isolated house and the surrounding mysterious woods.
Like in his previous film "Antarctic Journal", director Lim contemplates again on the human condition in a remote location where common laws don't apply. In the human's 'nature versus nurture' debate, he seems to tend to see the human cultural side as a superficial coat, one easily uncovered to bare the naturalistic instincts in aspects like humanity, sanity, society, and - in this film - family.
The film indirectly criticises the orphan condition in Korean society and it offers interesting comparison with representations from other cultures. Even in a rather grim Japanese story as Battle Royale, the orphans are portrayed as happy and likeable. They grew up in orphanages with a loving and professional caretaker. The situation was/is very different in Korea, even though, the two countries were similarly faced with a high number of orphans since the end of World War II.
"Hansel and Gretel" scrutinizes the fact that Korean orphanages and related social care were not professionalized. Instead, Korean orphanages were mostly passages for international adoption. "Hansel and Gretel" shares the troubled representations of orphans/adoptees in other Korean popular media like the television drama "Sorry, I Love You"; the film "Dasepo Naughty Girls" ("Dasepo Girl").
"Hansel and Gretel" succeeds very well in avoiding the trap to make the children caricatures. The children are well-crafted characters with a wide range of emotions. The fairy tale setting is specifically effective in representing their naive childlike image of the world and concepts like family. They crafted this world according to their desires.
|Audio Format:||DTS, DD 5.1|
|Video Format:||Widescreen 1.85:1 (Anamorphic)|
- Audio Commentary
- Making Film
- Deleted Scenes with Commentary
- Computer Graphics
- Short Film
- Making of Art