Gretel & Hansel (2020) 63% We haven t even spent an entire month in 2020 yet, but we re already getting our fourth big horror release of the year in this week s Gretel Hansel. Like last week s The Turning, this one is also rooted in classic literature, as it offers a new take on the well-known fairy tale by the Brothers Grimm. Sophia Lillis plays 16-year-old Gretel, who, along with her brother Hansel (Samuel Leakey), has been sent into the woods in search of a convent to take them in, since their destitute mother can no longer provide for them. Of course, as anyone familiar with the source material might predict, the pair happen upon a mysterious cabin en route and, tempted by the feast they spy inside, decide to pull up a couple of chairs and hang out with the creepy woman who lives there and who might be a witch looking to fatten them up and eat them later. Director Oz Perkins is no stranger to horror his previous films include I Am the Pretty Thing That Lives in the House and The Blackcoat s Daughter and he does his best to craft an atmosphere-driven arthouse chiller, but most critics say Gretel Hansel is far too leisurely paced and devoid of real terror that it loses steam quickly and never quite recovers. There are bright spots here: Sophia Lillis s acting chops are on full display, Alice Krige is suitably unsettling as Holda the witch, and pretty much everyone even those who generally didn t like the film has nothing but great things to say about the film s lush imagery and stunning cinematography. Ultimately, though, fans of traditional horror fare may find the film s deliberate pacing and third-act liberties with the source material a bit too much to swallow.