witch

MOVIE REVIEW: “The Witch” (& The Dreaded Curse of High Expectations)

It was the summer of 1999, when I saw The Blair Witch Project for the very first time. I remember standing in line to buy tickets with a friend, and how nervous we were. There’s nothing better than a movie that’s so scary, you’re actually scared to see it. We bought our tickets and curled up in our seats, just waiting to be terrified.

Our disappointment was deafening.

Not only was The Blair Witch Project not scary, they never even bothered to show us the witch! I was so mad when I left the theater that day, but a strange thing happened. I watched the very same movie months later and it scared the crap out of me. That’s because high expectations can ruin an experience, and they can suck the “scary” out of almost any scary movie.

I tried to keep my expectations low for The Witch. I heard conflicting reports about just how scary it was. Critics ran from the theater screaming “Scariest movie EVER,” when it was screened at Sundance last year, but just as many came out shaking their heads in disappointment. I was aware of all of this and knew I shouldn’t get my hopes up, but they ran amok anyway. Continue reading →