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Sep 30, 2016

This week, Brian, John, and Elaine grab their backpacks and old camcorders as they venture into the woods to review Blair Witch (2016), the sequel to the 1999 found footage classic, The Blair Witch Project.  Does the sequel hold up to the original or does it fall in line with other nostalgia-based sequels...sucking terribly.  So grab your stick people and dust off your shaky cam as we dive into our film review of Blair Witch (2016).  

Movie News!
Upcoming Films Coming From Controversial Filmmakers

Nate Parker- Director of The Birth of a Nation
Mel Gibson - Director of Hacksaw Ridge
Clint Eastwood - Director of Sully

BONUS NEWS STORY!- Michael Bay says new Transformers film will feature alternative WWII setting, complete with Hitler and Winston Churchill
Blair Witch (2016)

The Blair Witch Project

Came out in 1999 when the internet was still on dial up and we didn't know what the hell it was.
Revolutionary marketing strategy.

First real example of viral internet marketing.
Centered around the idea that the events in the film were "real".

One of the first commercially viable "Found Footage" Horror Films.

Cannibal Holocaust was the first.

Film cost $60,000 to make and grossed over 140 million dollars.
Echoes the hysteria caused by Orson Welles broadcast of War of the Worlds.  

Blair Witch (2016)

3rd sequel in the franchise- ignore that whole Book of Shadows: Blair Witch 2- it's really bad.
The film is a sequel/reboot that recycles a lot of the same scares and plot.
This movie may cause "Rage-mares"

A nightmare caused by the frustration of watching a terrible movie.

Blair Witch - Plot

The plot deals with James, the brother of Heather Donahue from the first film, searching for his sister after receiving a youtube clip from a contact in Burketsville that purportedly shows his sister alive after missing and presumed dead for 22 years.
James and his Scooby Doo gang of friends-- Lisa: The filmmaker and will they/won't me female friend, Ashley: Lisa's friend, Peter: Lisa's boyfriend and James friend that seems to have serious anger issues-- decide to travel to Burketsville, meet up with James' contact, and search for Heather.
Hilarity ensues as the group end up getting lost despite having all the GPS filmmaking tech including drones, ear cameras, and HD video gear.
For 90 minutes, each member of the Scooby Doo gang gets bumped off by the Blair Witch.

Scooby Doo Gang- Deaths

Talia- Death by stick person voodoo doll snapping.
Ashley- Gets an infected foot wound that has weird maggot-like creature in it.  Lightning hits tree and kills her too.
Peter- Crushed by falling tree
Laine- Not dead- but becomes The Renfield to The Blair Witch.
James- Death by looking at the Blair Witch after hearing his sister's voice.
Lisa- Death by looking at the Blair Witch after hearing James's voice.

Final Thoughts

All the subtlety of the first film is now gone as The Blair Witch is replaced by a creepy looking monster, loud and obnoxious noises, and a stupid alien light show.
 The film is utterly devoid of consistent plot and character development.

In a horror film, we need to know and care about the characters so that we empathize with the terror in the film.

Don't ever say in a horror movie that you're "going to get some firewood."  You will die shortly after.
The movie as a whole is very hard to follow.
Making a shitty film for cheap and seeing a gross of double does not mean it is a good film.

Doesn't take into account marketing costs.
Amount of theaters that the film plays in.

Blumhouse Productions Article on Blair Witch 

Blair Witch (2016)- Trailer

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