So the team behind this movie was crafty in promoting it. Just over a month ago, they rolled out a limited teaser and called it The Woods. And then they pulled the curtains back to inform us that this was, in fact, the next Blair Witch installment. The trend to bring back fantastic movies from two decades continues. It can be a hit (good morning, Jurassic World) or a miss (tell ya’ mom I said “hey,” Independence Day: Resurgence). The sad reveal is that this, too, is a miss. Let me shower you with reasons why this is actually a good horror flick, though!
If you imagine Blair Witch Project was never created, this movie is top-shelf. It paces very well, and carries a sense of dread- making you wonder just what all the fuss is about regarding this alleged witch. The sound effects they use are remarkable, leaving the imagination to truly wonder wtf that noize izzzz! Quality of film has become technically enhanced in this day and age, so we say goodbye to grainy screens- wondering if something was a shadow or a tree- and ahoy! to being able to see a bit beyond the flashlights and even above and beyond (literally- eye roll emoji) with the help of a drone.
The buildup has not been worth it in a while with horror movies. But the last 25 minutes made this movie great for me. They show the witch the perfect length of time without overdoing it (a la Mama) and making the movie still scary if you re-watch it. Her appearance makes sense, given her history of being hanged and weighed down with rocks as the stories say. I. LOVE. IT! Also, this movie introduced new powers and realms of the witch with time warps. It seems silly, but in retrospect, this adds more logistics to the concept of the movie concerning the house not being found, losing their way in the woods, and control of day and night.
*Spoilers be gone now.*
The pitfalls of this movie seemingly outweigh the positives, however. Yes, the pace of the movie is great, but it replicated the original movie. This leads anyone who saw the first movie down the path of knowing exactly what to expect. In terms of originality, then, Blair Witch comes out empty-pocketed. Additionally, characterization, while still just a horror movie, is tossed aside and forces us to ultimately not care what happens to them. The plot and drive of Blair Witch is forced when it didn’t have to be. The main character finds a Youtube video of found footage in the woods that he thinks might be his sister from the first installment….. right?? Let that simmer. So, almost two decades later, he wants to go look for her because he feels she may still be alive…decades later….in the woods….alone….naked…(wishful thinking). I’m just saying, they could have made this movie take place months later after the original, but noooooooooOOOOooOOoO, THEY HAD TO USE A DRONE!