HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
Gretel and Hansel
Mademoiselle
Tunnel, The
India Song
Last Rhino, The
Made in Hong Kong
Ring of Spies
Rom Boys: 40 Years of Rad
Pocketful of Miracles
The Tomb: Devil's Revenge
Sidecar Racers
Space Dogs
Out/Marriage
Safety Last!
Bride Who Has Returned from Hell, The
Show Boat
Savage
City Called Dragon, A
I Used to Go Here
Six Suspects
Still the Water
Not Now, Comrade
I'm Thinking of Ending Things
Wives of the Skies
Two Heads Creek
Next Stop, Greenwich Village
Captain, The
Great Wall, A
Trout, The
Zorba the Greek
Horror Crowd, The
Matthias & Maxime
Bullet for the President, A
Constant Husband, The
Anbessa
Man in Grey, The
Harakiri
Way to the Stars, The
Man Who Skied Down Everest, The
Bottoms Up!
   
 
Newest Articles
To Catch a Thief: After the Fox on Blu-ray
Tackling the Football Film: The Arsenal Stadium Mystery on Blu-ray
Film Noir's Golden Couple: This Gun for Hire on Blu-ray
The Doctor Who Connection: Invasion on Blu-ray
Hill's Angles: Benny Hill and Who Done It? on Blu-ray
Big Willie Style: Keep It Up Downstairs on Blu-ray
Walt's Vault: 5 Cult Movies on Disney+
Paradise Lost: Walkabout on Blu-ray
Buster Makes Us Feel Good: Buster Keaton - 3 Films (Volume 3) on Blu-ray
Network On Air: Nights In with ABC 3 - Don't Go Away - I Could Do with a Bit of Cheer Now!
What Use is Grief to a Horse? Equus on Blu-ray
For God's Sake Strap Yourselves Down: Flash Gordon on 4K UHD Collector's Edition
Party Hard: Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure on Blu-ray
Network On Air: Nights In with ABC 2 - Your Faces are All Blurred!
Eve Knew Her Apples: The Lady Eve on Blu-ray
Network On Air: Tempo - Gallery One
Network On Air: Nights In with ABC 1 - Welcome Once Again to Manchester!
Transformative Apocalypses: Phase IV and Southland Tales
The Happiest Days of Their Lives: The Guinea Pig on Blu-ray
Faced Poe: Three Edgar Allan Poe Adaptations Starring Bela Lugosi on Blu-ray
Hard Luck, Buster: The Cameraman on Blu-ray
At the Hop: Mr. Vampire on Blu-ray
Divine Madness: Female Trouble on Blu-ray
Country Matters: Further Out of Town on Blu-ray
Bat-Damn: Was Joel Schumacher's Batman Really That Bad?
   
 
  Last Witch Hunter, The Coq Au Vin
Year: 2015
Director: Breck Eisner
Stars: Vin Diesel, Rose Leslie, Elijah Wood, Michael Caine, Ólafur Darri Ólafsson, Rena Owen, Julie Engelbrecht, Joseph Gilgun, Isaach De Bankolé, Michael Halsey, Sloane Coombs, Lotte Verbeek, Dawn Olivieri, Inbar Lavi, Armani Jackson
Genre: Action, Fantasy, AdventureBuy from Amazon
Rating:  4 (from 1 vote)
Review: Kaulder (Vin Diesel) was a witch hunter eight hundred years ago, but that proved to be his undoing when he set out with his band of allies to destroy the Witch Queen (Julie Engelbrecht) who had taken up residence in a huge tree while her black plague spread throughout the land, wiping out vast swathes of the population. Once they had arrived at her location, they were faced with many apparitions and evildoers, but managed to despatch them until Kaulder reached the heart of the tree where the Queen lay. He thought he had the upper hand, but as she expired she grabbed into his chest and gripped his heart, telling him he now had the curse of immortality to live eternity alone...

That's because we had already seen in the prologue that Kaulder had lost his wife and child to the supernatural shenanigans, but precisely what he did between the thirteenth century and the present of 2015 where much of this was set remained a subject glossed over by The Last Witch Hunter, yet another of those films which supposedly had terrific, too long unmade scripts but when they were adapted it turned out they had little appeal to general audiences and flopped. It was another blow for Vin Diesel, a commanding presence who nonetheless had difficulty making hits away from his Fast & Furious franchise, with his Riddick sequels not exactly setting the world on fire either.

Was this all that bad, though? Could we discern what made that Cory Gosman's script so admired when it was in its initial draft? Probably not, for as with many scripts for would-be blockbusters it was extensively rewritten, supposedly to tailor it better to the star whose avowed appreciation of playing Dungeons & Dragons was apparently behind a lot of his characterisation and the plot to boot. That's all very well, but you just had to look at the official Dungeons & Dragons movie of about fifteen years before to see how easy it was to make a pig's ear of such material that very much depended on following the rules of a game that is invented as it progresses rather than having a fixed narrative for a film to capitalise on.

It hardly mattered, as The Last Witch Hunter was so yoked to the possibilities of computer graphics that any medieval authenticity was even absent in the opening medieval scenes and flashbacks, and Diesel came across like a wry he-man who might as well have been a cop with a flaming sword for all the concessions to his intended character history could have been. Kaulder presumably has been putting witches in their place for centuries, but now it seems someone wants to reanimate the Queen Witch and he is the man to stop it, along with Catholic church representative Michael Caine (about as much use as Judi Dench was in the second Riddick instalment) and religious sidekick Elijah Wood. It had all the spiritual heft of a TV episode where the detective had to recapture a crim who had skipped bail.

Just in case we thought, wait a minute, back when there were real witch hunts it wasn't the strongarm tactics of those like Kaulder who were the good guys, it was the poor victims of aggressive scapegoating in small communities that saw a great number of deaths of innocents, there was a nice witch included in the shape of Rose Leslie as Chloe, who becomes another sidekick to Kaulder when he sees that witches aren't all bad, not that the executed folks all those years ago were witches anyway. And in fact blameless victims are still murdered for supposedly practicing dark arts to this day in some parts of the globe, so Chloe had a lot to prove. As it was, what followed were empty setpieces which were heavy on the special effects and self-importance yet light on any resonance or anything to make most viewers care very much, any genuine arcane or holy trappings merely a pose. It just sort of happened, things were resolved, a sequel was hinted at (good luck with that) then the credits were rolling under a bad cover version and you were faced with contemplating what you should have watched instead. Music by Steve Jablonsky.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 1494 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star is the best at shouting?
Arnold Schwarzenegger
Brian Blessed
Tiffany Haddish
Steve Carell
Olivia Colman
Captain Caveman
Sylvester Stallone
Gerard Butler
Samuel L. Jackson
Bipasha Basu
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Darren Jones
Paul Smith
Andrew Pragasam
  Lee Fiveash
  Mick Stewart
Enoch Sneed
  Dsfgsdfg Dsgdsgsdg
   

 

Last Updated: