December 2, 2021
Witches in the Woods - Official Movie Poster

Witches in the Woods (2019) — Movie Review

Witches in the Woods (2019) — Movie Review Key Takeaways:

Pros: there are some scary moments.

Contras: predictable plot, lack of logic in the characters’ behavior, dull visuals.

Overall rating: could have been better

Witches in the Woods (2019) — Full Movie Review

It is close to impossible to find an original horror film. Everything good in the genre was already invented and exploited in the eighties and nineties, so now movie makers are only trying to update and reshoot old stories. Sometimes it turns out stupid and ugly, and sometimes quite alright. Regarding Witches in the Woods, one cannot say that the film is an absolute failure, but there is not much positive in it either.

As usual, let’s start by analyzing the storyline. From that viewpoint, Witches in the Woods is a genre classic. A group of young adults travels to a remote ski resort in West Mass and turns onto a country road where they get oh so lost. There’s probably no point explaining what happens next: suffice is to say that, when fighting the evil, people often tend to be on the losing side.

All the fun starts in the middle of the movie. Prior to that, the events only prepare us for the upcoming horrors. By the way, the screamers are pretty good. Personally, I flinched several times while watching. And in general, the horror was there. So we can say that Witches in the Woods succeeded at least in this. Yet this doesn’t happen until the middle of the film! And before that, to whip up an atmosphere of fear, they decided not to reinvent the wheel but use the good old messengers of misfortune – the crows. Well, again, the poor birds had to cover for scriptwriters’ laziness.

From a technical point of view, Witches in the Woods was not a success. The visuals were kind of gray and dull, and the acting is not the best. Sometimes an outright falsehood is noticeable. The heroes had a couple of attempts to rescue the action with humor, but to no avail due to their overall sluggishness. The joke about the fact that the witch was hanged for spoilers for “Game of Thrones” did not come up. Well, at least they didn’t joke about posting pictures of that dead animal to get more followers on social media.

Well, as usual, there was no logic in the behavior of the heroes. And I’m not even talking about everyone’s favorite sport of splitting up in the face of danger: no, the heroes behaved even worse than that! How about sitting in the car for hours and slowly freezing instead of making a fire from, well, the woods that surround them (they did have matches, in case you were wondering)? Or not covering their heads even after the temperature dropped below 0 degrees? Or forgetting about a bunch of warm clothes they had in the trunk?

Well, perhaps they weren’t cold enough, after all. What sucks, though, is that the movie would have turned out at least as scary if all this silliness was removed (perhaps it would become even scarier: imagine a dark shadow looming behind the heros’ backs as they gather around a bonfire. Which goes back to the point already made by the crows: the screenwriters’ laziness is obviously at fault here.

Spoiler Alert!

But the real bummer is that, counterintuitive as it is, there are no witches in Witches in the Woods! And this can truly break your heart if the only reason for watching the movie was a hope to see some. It pains me to even think how many different witch types the screenwriters had at their disposal, yet what they chose to go for in the end can be described as “the witch within” at best (and even that is prone to be challenged). So, no sick terror of The Blair Witch Project here, unfortunately.

The Cast

Hannah Kasulka — Jill

The final girl. By far the prettiest of the cast. Struggles to get her men straight.

Corbin Bleu — Philip

The good guy. A doofus who could have done better as he is the strongest of the bunch.

Humberly González — Bree

The bitch girl likely named after cheese, gets what she deserves early on. No surprises there.

Sasha Clements — Alison

The troubled girl who brings trouble. A far cry from a real witch, still.

Craig Arnold — Derek

The leader, the villain, the smartest kid who shows weakness and pays for it.

Kyle Mac — Tod

The clown who gets them all where they shouldn’t be and can’t redeem himself despite trying.

Conclusion

Tomatometer gave Witches in the Woods 57% (although it’s based only on 7 reviews, so 3 had to go “rotten” while 4 went “fresh”) while IMDb settled for 4.3/10. Honestly, the latter score feels closer to reality. If it weren’t for a few decent screamers to occasionally flinch from, Witches in the Woods would have been a complete disappointment. But those looking for some horror can, in fact, get their adrenaline rush even in spite of all the obvious cons.

In short, we rate Witches in the Woods as Satisfactory and recommend it to horror fans (albeit with some reservation). One good part about this movie is that it’s relatively short (total runtime of just over 1 hour and 30 minutes), so even if you find it boring you won’t have to suffer for too long. And of course, watching at 1.25 speed or faster is always an option: there are plenty of dull episodes in the movie where doing so won’t even affect the suspense much.

Watch Witches in the Woods Online

Watch Witches in the Woods (2019) online here