Whether you think that the original Blair Witch Project is one of the scariest films of all time or one of the biggest piles of twaddle that ever got a general release (85% on Rotten Tomatoes V a Razzie nomination for Worst Picture), you cannot deny that it was pretty much responsible for bringing the found-footage genre into the mainstream.
It was also insanely profitable- It was in the Guinness Book of World Records for “Top Budget: Box Office Ratio” (for a mainstream feature film). The film cost $22,000 to make and made back $240.5 million, a ratio of $1 spent for every $10,931 made. Marvel can only dream of such profit margins.
Now, this isn’t the first Blair Witch sequel, Balir Witch 2: Book of Shadows was released a year later, received terrible reviews, (13% on Rotten Tomatoes) has been declared non-cannon and was promptly buried deep under the Earth never to be spoken of again.
If it seems like i’m taking a while to get to the actual film that’s because there’s not really that much to talk about. Blair Witch IS The Blair Witch Project with the budget raised from 60’000 to 5 million. Which has resulted in a larger cast, more SFX and erm… nope, that’s about it.
The plot is very simple and actually rather clever- the brother of one of the main characters from the original, has- after 20 years – decided to go and find out what happened to her. He’s brought along a few friends (naturally one of them is a documentary maker) and a few people they meet along the way in a bid to solve the mystery of what happened all those years ago.
Now, as this is a Blair Witch film, the whole thing is shot on hand-held cameras. All of which seem to have unlimited battery life and a habit of glitching whenever something interesting is about to happen. However, since all the cast are wearing head cameras and are rather interchangeable it can sometimes be difficult to tell exactly who is currently screaming in terror.
Yeah, the cast aren’t really going to win any awards for acting and I couldn’t tell you any of their names/ relationships to each other if you held a gun to my head but their functional and about what you’d expect in a 90 minute film.
But as for the most important question? Yes, it’s scary. Very, very, scary. After a rather dull 30 minutes of ‘character development’, and we actually get into the woods I was bouncing around like a Mexican jumping bean. And then just when I was wondering about the state of my boxers…
They showed the monster.
Slightly more than a glimpse, but slightly less than it coming fully onto screen for us to get a good look and yet it was enough for me to realize that I’ve seen scarier things in an episode of Doctor Who. And it was going so well. Monster with a random bag of vague and yet terrifying powers, never seen thus allowing the audiences worst nightmares to run rampant and then the damn thing appears on screen.
I still kept the lights on last night though.
My Score- SEE IT