The Blair Witch Project

"Very Good"

The Blair Witch Project Review


The Blair Witch Project has the bizarre distinction of being the first horror film ever to give me nightmares before having seen it. The nightmares will probably continue for awhile, even though Blair Witch is not, contrary to the reports I've heard, the scariest movie ever made.

Not even close. The conceit of The Blair Witch Project is this: Three eager filmmakers go into the woods of Maryland in search of material for a project about "The Blair Witch," a supposed woman who was exiled from the town of Blair during the witch trial era.

And today, the Blair Witch continues to ply her trade, as interviews at the film's beginning make clear - stories of massacred children and haunted houses have left a lasting impression on the residents of Burkittsville (formerly Blair, MD). All of this sets the stage for us, plus a textual prologue telling us that these filmmakers vanished, and what we are watching is the footage they shot, discovered in the woods a year later.

So we know up front that something evil is afoot, and in the 90 minutes of "discovered footage" we get to see plenty of it. The trouble starts when the trio gets lost, and their turmoil gets worse every day (as they seem to be hiking in circles) and every night, when ... something begins playing cruel tricks on them.

Captured on videotape, black and white 16mm, and (I think) color 8mm, Blair Witch is compelling as a faux documentary. (And yes, none of this is true, although most of the people in line and sitting around us weren't aware of that.)

But is this movie scary? In a word, and on the whole, no. Possibly a victim of its own hype, like Star Wars, Blair Witch has plenty of atmosphere and creepy scenes (mostly unseen voices in the woods), but it isn't that frightening. My wife is a big wimp, and she only grabbed my arm twice. Not until the grand finale does the Witch trot out the Big Guns, and I will admit that the final images on screen are some of the scariest I've ever seen.

Still, two minutes of footage does not a stellar movie make. The other 88 are okay, and often funny, but it ain't horror. However, for the horror buff or indie film fan, this is a great example of something, well, off the beaten path.

They went to the woods to suck the marrow out of life.



Facts and Figures

Run time: 81 mins

In Theaters: Friday 30th July 1999

Box Office Worldwide: $248M

Budget: $25 thousand

Distributed by: Artisan Pictures

Production compaines: Haxan Films, Artisan Entertainment

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 3.5 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 87%
Fresh: 133 Rotten: 20

IMDB: 6.4 / 10

Cast & Crew

Starring: as Heather Donahue, as Joshua 'Josh' Leonard, Michael C. Williams as Michael 'Mike' Williams, Bob Griffith as Short Fisherman, Jim King as Interviewee, Sandra Sánchez as Waitress (as Sandra Sanchez), Ed Swanson as Fisherman With Glasses, Patricia DeCou as Mary Brown, Mark Mason as Man in Yellow Hat, Jackie Hallex as Interviewee with Child

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Colossal Movie Review

Colossal Movie Review

It's rare to find a movie that so defiantly refuses to be put into a...

King Arthur: Legend of the Sword Movie Review

King Arthur: Legend of the Sword Movie Review

It's unlikely that Guy Ritchie could make a boring movie if he wanted to. This...

Snatched Movie Review

Snatched Movie Review

It doesn't really matter that the script for this lively action-comedy is paper thin: teaming...

Jawbone Movie Review

Jawbone Movie Review

Boxing movies aren't usually this thoughtful. Sure, there are plenty of punchy moments in the...

Whisky Galore! Movie Review

Whisky Galore! Movie Review

Scottish filmmaker Gillies MacKinnon (Hideous Kinky) remakes the 1949 Ealing comedy classic, although it's difficult...

Alien: Covenant Movie Review

Alien: Covenant Movie Review

Master filmmaker Ridley Scott is back to continue the story 10 years after the events...

The Journey (2017) Movie Review

The Journey (2017) Movie Review

A fictionalised account of real events, this drama is reminiscent of Peter Morgan's work in...

Advertisement
Sleepless Movie Review

Sleepless Movie Review

In remaking the 2011 French thriller Sleepless Night, the filmmakers have dumbed down both the...

Unlocked Movie Review

Unlocked Movie Review

By injecting a steady sense of fun, this slick but mindless action thriller both holds...

Lady Macbeth Movie Review

Lady Macbeth Movie Review

A seriously impressive feature directing debut with a star-making central performance, this period British drama...

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 Movie Review

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 Movie Review

It was never going to be easy to match the impact of 2014's Guardians of...

The Promise Movie Review

The Promise Movie Review

The director of Hotel Rwanda, Terry George, turns to another humanitarian horror: the systematic murder...

Their Finest Movie Review

Their Finest Movie Review

Skilfully written, directed and acted, this offbeat British period film tells a story that catches...

Unforgettable Movie Review

Unforgettable Movie Review

With heavy echoes of trashy thrillers like Fatal Attraction, this movie overcomes its painfully simplistic...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.