Director Adam Wingard retrieves the Blair Witch project saga that revolutionized the horror genre in 1999. A group of college students venture into Black Hills Forest to try to find information about the disappearance nearly twenty years of the sister of one of them. All of them are very skeptical with the legend of the Blair Witch, and as they venture into the forest, they begin to understand that the legend is very real and more sinister than they could have imagined.
The first two acts of the film resemble the pattern of the revolutionary film directed in 1999 by Daniel Myrick and Eduardo Sanchez. The only news in the first hour of the film are increased number of characters and the impact of new technologies in the form of drones, mobile phones and best recording devices. Everything else we know.
Fortunately, Wingard and his usual screenwriter Simon Barrett venture into the great third act of the film. The terror begins to precipitate and the film delves into unknown lands and to dare finally to expand the mythology of history. The famous cabin in the woods that barely saw the original tape is placed in the center of climax and gives us an ending that recalls at times the most terrifying moments of the first installment of the saga.
Blair Witch definitely will not cause a stir like its predecessor and is the sequel to The Book of Shadows: BW 2, but generates enough terrifying sequences for the most nostalgic re-hover once again in this dangerous forest of Maryland. This sequel to The Blair Witch Project is empty of spontaneity and curiosity that caused that original set, and then becomes an accurate sample of ambiguity, confusion and needs which imposes a market lacking authenticity and new narrative.
Is a new movie or a relaunch of the previous Blair Witch, the excuse to go back to that damned forest is set on James (James Allen McCune), the brother of Heather in the original version. She disappeared right there 20 years ago, when looking closer to the legend of the Blair Witch. When his documentary story became sheer terror, mystery and disappearance.
It turns out that near the forest lives a young couple very interested in Elly Kedward, the sacrificed woman there in 1785, the owner of this legend. And this forest. Two restless boys, freaks, who upload videos in Youtube. In one James thought he saw his sister, and already seduced his friends to return to the forest.
Again, we witness this macabre venture through their own footage, with more current equipment, including small screens, a drone, portable cameras and professional. But they were or were not looking for Heather?
As in many horror films set in a forest, the forest tree cover, is worn any argument, and converts trunks, twigs and lichens on dark deadly weapons. Without the effects of overwhelming and annoying sounds of this film, would for National Geographic.
Forced subjectivity of these young people who insist pushed by the director with found footage movies, the excuse to shoot everything and all the time even if they die of fear to tell a story. I appeal trite at this point the little camera in hand the horror factor; more than the legends of witches in the forest.
While Blair Witch spell on our screens on September 21, US critics have already given the verdict and as expected the result is not really conclusive. Blair Witch just passed under the critical eye of American newspapers and the result is far from satisfactory. With an average of 56% on Rotten Tomatoes, opinions appear particularly mixed. What we all feared seems to come true as Blair Witch would be just another Found Footage starved of originality and pale copy of the masterpiece of 1999. Here's a quick recount on critical trends:
With nothing new to bring to the mythology Blair Witch has found footage that should have remained lost in the woods, ironically announces the New York Times.
Variety, for its part seems less categorical and refers primarily to large misfires of the first suite of Blair Witch, which everyone tried to forget since. Unfortunately the film seems not to have achieved what it has undertaken at the start and is a much more accomplished and entertaining movie that pump money in 2000, The Shadow Book (Blair Witch 2), however it looks like a missed opportunity.
The Hollywood Reporter, meanwhile deplores too striking resemblance to the original, preventing the film to find its own identity in the end by saying by sticking too closely to the image of the original Blair Witch, the result is a recipe resservie boring rather than reinvention, expanding the number of characters this time but still sticking to the same basic rhythms.
But some critics are still warmer and support the fact that this result is still better than the previous Blair Witch 2, which was a disaster:
This new iteration still seems more inspired, tells IndieWire.
Empire Magazine finally supports some inventiveness in the film and especially a good dose of fright proposed even if its place on the stop somewhat to find its own personality and says terrifying, efficient and sometimes inventive, Blair Witch is a solid genre film both helped and served by its frankness.
In all cases, positive ratings as negative, Blair Witch frankly suffer vis-à-vis emancipation of the original material. Is it risk-taking or simply inevitable when it comes to a franchise like this, which is hard to know, but for now the opinions are not really reassuring and seem to confirm our strongest anxieties that Blair Witch will be compared with the original with yet another found footage film without genuine flavor, that will give us more desire to see the original masterpiece.