Review: The Witch

the_witch_poster_1200_1778_81_s5-stars-out-of-5

The Witch – A New England Folktale. Set against a backdrop of foreboding wilderness, a family of English settlers fall into darkness, as even the lofty bastions of faith are as much a source of terror, as they are of hope.

Drawing from authentic folklore and historic records, The Witch tells a tale that is genuinely terrifying, in that it feels so real, even to the point where much of the dialogue is taken directly from real records of witch trials and accounts of historic witchcraft.

This is the witch of the black mass and death. The corrupting hag that flies in the night and pledges her allegiance to the Devil. The figure of fear that has terrified people for thousands of years.

The Witch is a modern vision of traditional folktales, so this manifestation of the witch is no misunderstood Pagan, midwife or village healer. She is a creature of darkness, in service to evil.

But the true terror of this tale is how even when in the presence of real monstrous evil, our own fear and superstition can be just as harrowing and deadly.

This movie is as much one of psychological horror, as it is literal horror and should appeal to those with a taste for the subtleties of fear. It will not make you jump, nor attempt to revolt you with excessive gore and blood. Instead, this is a classic horror movie, where the scares come from atmosphere and menace.

This is a masterful movie and if horror is your thing, then you should definitely see it. Alternatively, if you have a passion for historical witchcraft, then this movie, though fiction, certainly captures the feel of what it must have been like to live under the dreadful cloud of those superstitious beliefs.

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