Friday, February 22, 2013

Mockbusted #14: Hansel And Gretel Get Baked

I'm not a big fan of pot humor. I don't smoke pot personally, though I don't make any judgment about those who do, its just not my thing. The thing is, even if I did, I still don't think I'd really get what was so funny about movies like today's feature, the last Hansel and Gretel mockbuster, Hansel and Gretel Get Baked. Is it just a reference to something familiar, like every Carlos Mencia joke? I mean, the few times in my life that I've been high, I never acted like most of the people who play being high in movies (I mostly just got sleepy), and come to think of it, I've never actually seen anyone who was high and acted that way either. Maybe its just easier to laugh at stuff when you're stoned, but I don't see the point.

Hansel and Gretel Get Baked takes the classic fairytale witch and substitutes gingerbread for cannabis, making her a kindly old dealer who preys on unsuspecting potheads and literally smokes the life force out of them like living bongs to retain her youth (after hacking away at them to eat a few chunks of human flesh). Enter our two twins, a ginger stoner and her somehow non-ginger responsible brother who eventually get roped into the witch's scheme to take out rival dealers and become the queen of the local marijuana trade. Its about as cheesy as you would expect, with a lot of people who probably don't smoke pot making really bad jokes and puns about pot smoking, and then some not really all that creative or interesting gore to pad things out until the end.

Given the set up and the supposedly hilarious new twist, what surprises me most is how ultimately pointless the whole pot angle is to the story. The switch from candy to pot doesn't really add anything to the story and in most cases its as simple as substituting one word for the other, and there aren't so many ways the premise is used to exploit the intended audience's assumed love of pot references to justify the project. Its as if the mere presence of and reference to pot itself was somehow inherently funny, that they felt they didn't even have to make a joke of it half the time. Then they throw in zombies, and then all but forget about them, and two chicks start making out, as if the filmmakers just threw up their hands and said, "fuck it, they get the point that we have no substance, let's just finish this."

I don't know why I find it so sad that Cary Elwes and Lara Flynn Boyle are in this movie, because I've never really been a particularly huge fan of either of them, but for some reason the fact that they both felt the need to stoop to this film's level, or that they needed the money this bad, depresses me. Elwes' participation amounts to little more than a blink or you'll miss it cameo, so I can believe he was maybe just doing a favor for somebody, but Boyle plays the witch herself, and I just feel bad for her. She seems to give it all she has both as the old version and the younger version of the character, but the effort she puts in almost makes it worse. If anyone needed a cautionary tale about saving your money in Hollywood, this is it.

Now that I've finally reached the end of this weird mini review series with the last Hansel and Gretel mockbuster (at least that I know of), I feel more than a little disturbed by the lack of imagination and talent applied to so many modern re-imaginings of fairy tales nowadays. I've talked about my love of fairy tales many times on this blog, and it seems like they would be very easy to adapt and turn into some great dark action fantasy projects, but every time one comes out, it turns out to be crap. This should be my favorite genre, but now I find myself dreading the upcoming Jack The Giant Slayer, even though I should be excited for it. Obviously, I didn't expect much from a movie called Hansel and Gretel Get Baked, and I'm not surprised in the slightest that it didn't deliver, but I am surprised by the larger failure of fairy tale related projects in general. If you can't get something like Hansel and Gretel right, maybe you're in the wrong business.

In any case, don't bother with this movie, if you were going to, which you probably weren't. You know, come to think of it, that sentence applies to far too many of my reviews. At this point its kinda becoming a tree falling in the woods situation. If I review a movie nobody gives a shit about, was any of the time spent on it worth it? Maybe go see this movie after all, just to justify my writing about it. Or don't. Yeah, probably don't.

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