‘Blair Witch’ fails to innovate

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“Blair Witch,” the sequel to the 1999 film “The Blair Witch Project,” follows the story of a group of friends who visit the Black Hills Forest in Maryland. One of the campers is a film student who is working on a documentary project about her friend James, the younger brother of Heather Donahue, one of the people who went missing in the first film. For 20 years, James has been convinced his sister is still alive and is determined to find her. With the help of some friends and two locals, they venture into the forest where Heather was last seen. Quickly, unexplainable events begin to occur, and the group scrambles to get out of the forest only to find themselves running in circles.

This film is not bad, but it is not great either. It consists of average acting and subpar writing, both of which are expected in a horror film like this. It is a documentary-style movie so there is a great deal of jerky camera movements and awkward angles. The filmmakers play into the scare tactic by adding an unnecessary number of loud noises while turning the camera on and off, which gets somewhat annoying as the movie goes on.

“Blair Witch” is almost exactly the same as “The Blair Witch Project.” It’s still a group of children going into the woods for a documentary project. The only difference is the reason why they are going into the woods.

Although “Blair Witch” was just a run-of-the-mill horror movie, it did have some good aspects to it. One of the main goals of horror is to scare the audience. This can be done with sounds, lighting and camera angles. “Blair Witch” does a great job at incorporating these movie making tools. The way they position the camera will make moviegoers think that something horrifying will pop up at any moment.
Manipulating the lighting adds to the effect. When it is nighttime, everything instantly becomes more terrifying. Since this film was made like a documentary, that in itself makes it scarier. Thinking that the events actually happened puts the audience on the edge of their seats. One of the stories behind the infamous Blair Witch is that because she’s so horrifying to look at, the sight of her will scare anyone to death. Knowing this makes viewers anxious, because the audience doesn’t know if the witch could pop up at any moment.

“Blair Witch” would have been a really good movie if “The Blair Witch Project” had never been made. On own, they are both well-made and great horror films, but “Blair Witch” is just a copycat of the first one. Despite the two movies’ striking similarities, the newest one is undoubtedly terrifying. They did a great job at creating suspense and making it hard to look at the screen. For anyone who loves a good scare, this is definitely the movie to see, especially with Halloween just around the corner.

Kathryn’s Rating: 3/5

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Reporter | Sophomore | Medical Laboratory Science | [email protected]

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