Film Review: The Witch

witchIntroducing itself as “A New England Folk Tale,” the film immediately thrusts us into a courthouse where a family is being expelled from their colony essentially for not practicing the right version of Christianity. On their own in the wilderness, the family establishes their own small farm but once their newborn son goes missing while in the care of their eldest daughter, a series of bad things start to happen and supernatural forces seem to be at hand.

The Witch is an extraordinary film that not only gives the audience horror in the literal and traditional sense, but also in the metaphoric as most of the story’s characters are haunted by grief, guilt and deception. It is worth noting that the thrills and scares of The Witch are subtle at times and deliberately paced, so if you don’t go in expecting a thrill-a-minute scare fest, I believe that you as the viewer will be greatly rewarded by this terrific film.

Writer director Robert Eggers does a wonderful job of establishing a mood and world for the story while providing plenty of creepy atmosphere and some of the most subtly unsettling images to grace a screen in quite some time. Meanwhile the entire cast of The Witch turns in some of the most gut wrenching performances given to a genre film in ages, and every member of the main cast is certainly going to be recognized for their work.

The Witch received a wide release last week and if it is still running at a theater near you I highly recommend seeing it before it is gone, and if it already left your local theater then seek it out on VOD.

The Witch (2015); Director: Robert Eggers; Starring: Anya Taylor-Joy, Ralph Ineson, Kate Dickie

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