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Henzeru to Gureeteru 

With their father out seeking food during a famine, a brother and sister are lured by their cruel stepmother into the forest to avoid having to feed them. Hansel and Gretel return the first... See full summary »
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Cast

Episode cast overview:
Mami Koyama ... Hansel (voice)
Chieko Honda ... Gretel (voice)
Miyoko Asô Miyoko Asô ... Witch (voice)
Shunsuke Shima Shunsuke Shima ... Father (voice)
Chie Kitagawa Chie Kitagawa ... Stepmother (voice)
Mitsuko Horie Mitsuko Horie ... Narrator / Fairy in Opening (voice)
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Storyline

With their father out seeking food during a famine, a brother and sister are lured by their cruel stepmother into the forest to avoid having to feed them. Hansel and Gretel return the first time with a trail of pebbles, but the second lose their way when the breadcrumbs they're forced to use are eaten by birds. They follow a magnificent bird to a house of gingerbread, but it turns out to be a trap, inhabited by a child-eating witch. Written by Anonymous

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Details

Release Date:

28 October 1987 (Japan) See more »

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Production Co:

Nippon Animation Co. See more »
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User Reviews

 
Hansel and Gretel
25 April 2019 | by TheLittleSongbirdSee all my reviews

'Hansel and Gretel' is one of the world's most well-known and most popular stories and for good reason. Have always loved it as a child and still do and not just in book form, it has translated well to film, animation (numerous times but variably admittedly) and even opera. Its charming story still charms, though it is also suitably unsettling, and the characters are some of the most famous in fairy-tale literature.

This series, 'Grimm Masterpiece Theater' or 'Grimm Fairy Tale Classics', is generally well worth watching, far from perfect but for any fans of fairy-tales and foreign language animation there is a lot to be gotten out of this. The series' version of "Hansel and Gretel" is very well done. It is one of the scariest episodes of the series, the original story already does have unsettling moments but here there is a genuine creepiness for kids and adults alike not found as much in some of the other adaptations. Saying that, "Hansel and Gretel", for reasons that will be mentioned later, is also one of the most interesting episodes that actually sets it apart from most 'Hansel and Gretel' adaptations and certainly of the animated ones.

Will say though that there are things that one can be easily critical of. The music, theme songs aside, was a consistent weak point of the series and it is here again. It is very of the time, doesn't fit with the action or atmosphere and like it was initially intended for something else entirely. Very repetitive as well.

Some of the drawing lacks finesse too, especially early on with Hansel and Gretel's character designs. Not all the voice acting works either, the liveliest and most fitting contribution coming from the increasingly demonic witch. The father sounded somewhat too gruff and shouty, plus the lip synchronisation seemed sloppy with him, and occasionally Hansel and Gretel veer on sounding a little too cute (not a problem mostly as their character designs are "cute").

On the other hand, personally thought on the whole that the animation was nice. It's atmospheric, mostly smooth and expressive and a nice job is done with the attention to detail in the backgrounds. The standouts are the look of the witch's house, which is so appetising in look and makes one want to tuck in and the animation and character design for the witch (very freaky and seemed to be influenced, or maybe it's just me, by the wicked queen's hag disguise in Disney's 'Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs'). The theme songs are pleasant and accompanied by well designed intros/outros.

Furthermore, the writing avoids over-simplicity or being too complicated. It's easy to understand for younger audiences while having something for people older but wanting some childhood nostalgia. Expectedly for this series, the story is treated seriously and with respect and yet it includes some very interesting touches that give a very famous and accessible story freshness. These touches include the single scariest portrayal of the witch of any adaptation of 'Hansel and Gretel', both Hansel and Gretel being courageous at the end in the witch's very unsettlingly handled defeat (interestingly Hansel more so than Gretel, usually Gretel is the more resourceful one) and the father showing more strength than usual due to having never seen the character standing up to the stepmother. The characters are well done generally, with the two protagonists likeable, the pace moves along nicely and the story-book-like narration neither over-explains or is overused.

Altogether, good animated adaptation. 7/10


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