Season of the Witch
Starring Nicholas Cage, Ron Perlman and Claire Foy
Directed by Dominic Sena (Whiteout)
Rated PG-13 for thematic elements, violence and disturbing content
Appropriate for ages 15+
When two 14th-century knights (Cage and Perlman) find themselves in a town hit by a horrible plague, they are charged with transporting a supposed witch (Foy) to stand trial at a nearby monastery in the hopes that the plague will end with her death sentence.
If you follow Hollywood news at all, you are probably well aware that Nicolas Cage is in extreme dire straights with his finances. And thus he picks up as many films as he can in order to meet his obligations. Every once in a while we end up with a jackpot like Kick-Ass, but most of the time the films find themselves in Witch territory. This is the kind of movie that realistically has zero chance of either succeeding or entertaining.
I would guess that this was supposed to be a horror film. I’m not really sure since it is not in the least bit scary or suspenseful. It tries to be tongue-in-cheek funny at times, but only achieves mild humor. It might also be considered fantasy, but it lacks the imagination needed for that genre.
So what went wrong here? I’m not sure if anything ever went right. The script is lame at best and atrocious at worst. There is not enough violence or danger to bring the chills and thrills which is why it doesn’t work in the whichever genre it is aiming for. As for the utilization of an Oscar-winning actor, what you get here is a phoned-in role for Cage and the rest of the cast looks equally apathetic.
Slightly interesting is the special effects show at the end of the film, but they merely serve as an example of too little, too late.
The only time I was even modestly entertained was when the 10-year-old boy sitting behind me (obviously taken out of school to see the film by his model parents) started belching unrelentingly at the screen. Normally I would consider this behavior reprehensible, but this particular time I felt fortunate for the distraction. F