The Witch 2016

the-witchIn retrospect, making a horror film set in 1630’s New England is an obvious idea; modern horror is so starved of new ideas that going back to source materials promises that at least the usual clichés can be body-swerved. Robert Eggers writes and directs this intense story of possession and witchcraft as Katherine and William (Kate Dickie and Ralph Ineson) attempt to transplant their family to a new home, only to find that their daughter Thomasin (Anna Taylor-Joy) is acting strangely. The family’s goat, Black Phillip, steals the show, and The Witch finishes on a few memorable flourishes, even if it ends where one might have hoped that it would start. Nevertheless, the slow burn is effective, and Eggers deserves credit for ploughing a fresh furrow in the annals of witchcraft film-making.