Film Reviews

The Witches (2020) Review: Dull, Diverse, & Pointless

A film that has no idea who its audience is is bound to fail with everybody.

Morally bankrupt Hollywood is desperately looking for a money maker as they lose billions of dollars thanks to COVID lockdown hysteria. Warner Bros is one of the few major studios looking to make money by releasing the remainder of their smaller 2020 releases on HBO Max.

However, one has to believe the 2020 remake of a 1990 film likely isn’t driving up subscriptions. The Witches was a 1990 film starring Anjelica Huston which received critical acclaim and a moderate success at the box office…the 2020 remake, not so much.

In order to meet 2020 diversity standards, 2020’s version of the Witches is set in 1960s Alabama and begins with a narration by Chris Rock. An orphaned young boy goes to live with his grandmother played by Octavia Spencer. One day, they go to a supermarket and the boy is confronted by a strange lady who offers him a piece of candy, a snake crawls out from her clothes, but his grandmother causes the witch to disappear.

She then explains to him that there is a group of evil witches who hate children and wishes to turn them into animals. They travel to a hotel where it is discovered a meeting of witches is taking place under the Grand High Witch (Anne Hathaway). Their plan is to turn every child in the world into rats by giving them tainted candy. 

There are two problems with this film, one the movie doesn’t know it’s audience. The film is targeted for kids but the imagery is far too much for young children turning a dark fantasy into borderline horror. Since the dialogue is targeted to children, the film doesn’t offer much for adults to enjoy, a fact that is cemented in how utterly boring this film is.

As a viewer, this movie is about as uneventful as you can get. Much of this film feels like a poor Ratatouille adaptation. The CGI seems like it was pulled from a 2007 movie and the story isn’t strong enough to hold your attention. There isn’t enough fantasy or adventure to keep you from tapping out on this HBO Max viewing. One thing I could give credit to is that the fact manages to avoid the tropes of racism in the south that every Hollywood film set in that era loves to throw in your face. The only thing worse than a bore of a film is a woke bore of a film.

The Witches is simply another Hollywood remake that didn’t need to exist.

1.5/5

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2 comments

  1. Have you noticed one genre of horror that’s been mostly absent through the last decade? Monster horror, creature features. The kind of monsters that are actual monsters, not undead humans or humans with supernatural powers, or humans that are possessed. You’d think the whole remake craze would take advantage of all that like the 80s did. Well, they tried that with The Blob, but it’s been through several delays to the point where I’m not even sure any footage has been shot yet.

    Well anyway, I made a list as a reminder of the good times, and for those who wish to experience what the good times has to offer:
    https://theanomaloushost.org/2020/10/26/my-top-50-favorite-creature-features/

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I remember the original 1990 “Witches” movie. Its portrayal of subliminal and powerful evil behind the facade of every day life actually made me feel sick.

    Liked by 1 person

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