Dir. Luc Besson, 107 mins, DVD rental
In a strange case of synchronicity, Lovefilm sent me this film straight after the pretty appalling Mars Needs Moms! and it makes a fine antidote. It’s no classic, but hey, this was a fun surprise after some of the rather lack-lustre Hollywood adventure flicks of late. It’s an unassuming, somewhat old-style family adventure film, and none the worst for that.
This is a French production directed by none other than the (once-great? There’s a discussion for another day…) Luc Besson, based on a popular series of European comic books in a distinctly Tintin-vein. Shot live-action, it will no doubt be destined to comparison with Speilberg’s cgi Tintin movie released later this year. It’s perhaps worth noting that the film cost something in the region of 25 million Euros compared to the $150-$200 million that Tintin finally costs, or the $170 million Disney’s Mars Needs Moms!is purported to have cost. I know I’d sooner see ten films like this one than one more uninspired Hollywood cgi epic.
I really enjoyed this film, a Victorian-set adventure set in a wonderfully realised Paris (with an early sequence in Egypt that perhaps will inevitably incite comparisons with Indiana Jones adventures). It’s fun, it’s witty, it’s a little screwball, with a fine cast- if all the elements don’t add up to greatness it doesn’t really matter, as it’s got a really special leading turn by Louise Burgoin as the titular Adele. Really, it’s worth watching it to simply see Burgoin, as she chews up the scenery with a bold, memorable and emotive performance. This lady is no female Indiana Jones or Victorian Tomb Raider, she has a charm all her own. I’d love to see her reprise the character in the mooted two sequels (although somewhat lacklustre box-office has perhaps nixed such plans, alas).
I don’t know what the international distribution deal on this film was; shot in French there’s no English dub on the DVD, just burned-in subtitles, so I guess no wide theatrical English release was planned. No doubt that curtailed some of the revenue streams, it’s a pity. I think a film like this could have had some success at the box-office had an English version been available. I guess people will yell at the heresy of an English dub, but you know, there’s a market for family films like this and its a shame that language barriers affect this. It’s why we are inflicted with so much Hollywood junk.
The fact that this film could be made so cost-effectively raises the question why Hollywood feels it has to spend do much on it’s turgid blockbusters with triple-A overpaid talent. I’m not suggesting that The Extraordinary Adventures… is necessarily equal or better than Hollywood blockbusters, but it’s certainly a refreshing change and sign that you don’t have to spend ridiculous amounts of money to make a fine, fun adventure film. I only hope we see those sequels (Besson intended to shoot a trilogy), they could have been even better.
(I thought the same about Solomon Kane though, and it doesn’t look like that sequel will ever happen, either… )
2011.39: Mars Needs Moms! (2011) ** August 25, 2011Posted by ghostof82 in : Film General , 1 comment so far
Dir. Simon Wells, 88 mins, DVD rental
When I first heard about this film, I thought it was a gag. It took a little while for me to realise that no, this wasn’t a joke, Disney really had made a cgi animated movie titled Mars Needs Moms! (today at work I mentioned the film and a colleague looked across at me and did a double-take. I don’t know, it’s just one of those titles I guess).
It’s actually based on a childrens book, which perhaps excuses the title, but that doesn’t excuse the poor quality of storytelling here. I have no idea what the quality of the original story is, but the film is a fairly insipid offering. Really, all the way through this film I kept asking myself, what the hell were they thinking? Where’s the emotion? Where’s the story? It’s such a turgid, unsurprising, uninvolving debacle that it’s box-office failure is actually something to be fairly reassured by, in a world where Pirates Of The Carribean 4 cleaned up over a billion dollars.
The thing that bugged me most about this film is that it amounted to a tech demo. Thats the problem with so much of this cgi animation stuff. Sure, it’s beautiful to look at sometimes but the motion-captured human characters are getting genuinely really creepy which is surely counter-productive. With each movie the human faces are approaching more and more real and yet more and more alien, it’s a weird thing to see. The irony is a hand-drawn animated character has more emotion and warmth than these strange creatures have, and the closer (and yet more distant) these cgi approximations of ‘real’ are, the more pointless it all is. It sometimes looks so real it might as well be live-action, so whats the point of all the cgi anyway?
So is the point purely the tech? A new toy, perhaps an attempt to install a mini-industry in the Hollywood Dream Machine? Take the main character, Milo, who is a young boy trying to rescue his mom from the martians. The character is actually motion-captured by an adult, Seth Green, which is, basically, either a tech-demo brainstorm or a pretty stupid waste of an inflated budget, depending on your point of view. Some will eye it as a tech-demo of how adult motion-capture data can be transformed (so, say, Tom Cruise could be motion-captured one day to play a childhood version of one his adult roles in a generation-spanning movie). On the other hand, its pretty pointless, I mean, why even do that, why motion-capture an adult playing a kid? The question may well be asked why not just shoot it live-action with a kid in the role anyway, but in anycase, why not just motion-capture a child actor if it has to be a cgi movie as opposed to live-action? As it is, they had to dub a child-actors voice to the character anyway which just compounds the madness.
Mars Needs Moms! bombed pretty spectacularly at the cinema earlier this year, and indeed here in the UK I think the film has only been released on DVD, unless the Blu-ray is a retailer-exclusive somewhere. Maybe this motion-captured stuff has had its day- certainly the people behind the Tintin movie being released later this year, made with similar tech, must have viewed the Mars Need Moms! box-office crash and burn with some trepidation. Certainly if Tintin suffers a similar fate I think we will have seen the last of such movies.
Hmm, I kinda liked Beowulf.
2011.38: Source Code (2011) ** August 21, 2011Posted by ghostof82 in : Film General , 5 comments
Dir. Duncan Jones, 96 mins, Dvd rental
I really didn’t like this, I tried to, but the script was just so daft; the central conceit just falls apart when you think about it- perhaps its just the hype around the film, but I just find it so hard to believe everyone enjoys the film. Some people are praising it as an intellectual thriller or one of the best sci-fi films in years when it’s nothing of the sort, its as daft as any Transformers movie and an utter disappointment.
Just bear with me a minute. The idea is that the train exploded and the Source Code team somehow know that it is linked to an impending Dirty Bomb incident, so in order to identify the bomber they access the last memories of one of the victims. Firstly, how? The victims died in an explosion, they were vaporised or blown to bits- how do you get a brain and access it’s last 8 minutes? The film shows us several times in great spectacular explosive glory the train being blown up and the characters being consumed by a huge fireball.
But okay, lets go with it. Even allowing for some miracle and having access to some victims brain, once you think about it, it still falls apart. The teacher sitting opposite Michelle Monaghan’s Christina, whose last 8 minutes Gyllenhaall’s character Colt Stevens ‘re-lives’… in real life he just sat there chatting with her and the bomb exploded. Everything we ’see’ and experience of those last 8 minutes is based on that teachers experience. Nobody other than the bomber even knew there was a bomb on the train. The teacher, and no-one, not the computer creating the simulation, or the Source Code team, could possibly know that the bomb was hidden in the ceiling above the restroom. Likewise that the bomber had the dirty bomb in a white van parked at the station ahead, certainly not the registration plate of the van (I was groaning in disbelief at that point). It’s utterly preposterous. Just think about it. The teacher is sitting there, chatting- the simulation is based on everything he saw/experienced. There is no way he could ‘know’ where the bomb was, or the identity of the bomber written in his recovered wallet, or that the bomber on leaving the train would go to his waiting van (the real train, and the teacher, was well on its way again at that point) or that said van had the dirty bomb in the back or what the van’s registration was. The teacher would be ignorant of all these facts. So how does Gyllenhaal ‘discover’ them?
It would have made more sense if it was a literal time travel movie- that Gyllenhaal’s character could repeatedly go back in time, somehow inhabit the teachers body and attempt to change time by finding the bomb and stopping the bomber. I guess the scriptwriters chose not to go that way because they thought it was daft, but really, its no less daft than the solution they came up with, which was some kind of simulation based on some dead guy’s memory. The problem is that the dead guys memory is strictly limited to what he knew and saw. He could not possibly know about the existence of the bomb, nevermind where it was, or the identity/plan of the bomber or the location of the Dirty Bomb, so how can the source code simulation, other than by making it all up? And don’t get me started with Gyllenhaal phoning his dad, whats that, his real dad or a simulation of his dad?
And as for the ending, the film really truly jumps the shark in an attempt to come up with an happy ending. Basically the bomb is defused, the bomber caught with his Dirty Bomb, and everyone lives happily ever after, even though it is established they all died before the movie even started. Well, that’s one of the most stupid ‘twists’ in recent cinematic memory. What is it? Some kind of alternate universe (in which case Gyllanhaal has stolen the teachers life/body) or Matrix-like never-ending simulation, or happy afterlife? And how does it affect the ‘real-world’ the way it does, complete with text message to Colleen’s mobile and Stevens still being alive?
Who writes this shit? Come on people, you’re being taken for mugs.
Source Code reminded me lot of Incepton, and I don’t think that film is half as clever as people think it is either. It’s just another film that rushes headlong with a lot of style and verve in an attempt to ‘fool’ viewers into not thinking about what they are seeing. There’s too much of that these days, people are far too passive in the film-watching experience, they accept everything and get fooled by films that profess to being very clever, when they are nothing of the sort. I quite liked Inception, but Source Code, nope, not at all. Two stars for being competently directed and acted inspite of the poor script, but thats about it.
Ridley Scott signs on for new Blade Runner August 18, 2011Posted by ghostof82 in : Film General , 2 comments
That sound you can hear is Hell freezing over. Ridley Scott, currently busy on post-production on his Alien prequel-ish Prometheus (surely the most anticipated film of 2012?), has signed a deal with Alcon Entertainment, to direct and produce a new Blade Runner movie. It may be a prequel, it may be some kind of sequel (the only thing we do know is that the rights deal does not allow for a remake), but clearly it isn’t even written yet and is still some years away.
On the one hand I’m excited. If there has to be more Blade Runner then it has to involve Ridley. Simple as that. But it’s also a little sad that rather than return to sci-fi with new trailblazing material like he did in 1979 and 1982, instead Ridley is shooting films based on his earlier glories. Guess it says everything about Hollywood. There’s no way anything original can get made now. I even wonder if Lucas could have gotten Star Wars greenlit in this current Hollywood environment. This year we have a new Conan, a new The Thing. We already saw a new Tron. It was inevitable that a new Blade Runner would get started, but at least with Ridley involved there may be hope of something worthwhile. I’ve certainly been impressed by images and news surrounding Prometheus.
But then again, he still maintains Deckard is a Replicant. Thats always been crazy.
The $250 million Lone Ranger..?!! August 15, 2011Posted by ghostof82 in : Film General , 1 comment so far
I read the news today that Disney’s The Lone Ranger movie has been derailed after the studio balked at the $250 million budget. First thing that struck me is just how the hell do you even consider spending that amount of money on a Lone Ranger movie? It’s a bloody Western adventure for goodness sake, not War & Peace. You know, this kind of stuff just exemplifies all that is wrong with Hollywood today. You only have to look at the ‘creative team’ though who were behind this costly monstrosity- Jerry Bruckheimer, Gore Verbinski… Johnny Depp as Tonto. They don’t come cheap, do they? It’s crazy, you’d think anybody could make a decent Lone Ranger movie for $100 million at most. It’s about time somebody in Hollywood realised you don’t need to waste huge amounts on so-called ‘AAA’ talent in order to make a perfectly fine movie. Hell, I doubt if $150 million of that $250 million would ever have seen the screen anyway. Really, I’m dumbstruck that the film was ever seriously mooted with that kind of budget involved. Thank goodness for common sense.
2011.37: Battle:Los Angeles (2011) *** August 14, 2011Posted by ghostof82 in : Film General , add a comment
Dir. J.Liebesman, 116 mins, DVD rental
Well it’s easy to see how this film was pitched to the studio- you can call it “Black Hawk Down meets Independence Day” and you’ve pretty much covered it. Which isn’t to dismiss the film or what it achieves; if thats what the film-makers indeed set out to do then they pretty much succeeded. Whether the world really needs a Black Hawk Down/Independence Day hybrid is another matter, I guess.
Frustratingly, there’s a far better film in here than got made (then again, that seems the norm these days with Hollywood blockbusters). Aaron Eckhart is in very fine form here and deserves a better movie. I remember watching him in The Dark Knight and thinking he’d have made a damn fine Batman- he has a square-jawed physical presence that serves him well in this film and hints it could have been more than it is. He plays a Marine vet who is haunted by his experiences in Iraq, and now he’s back home he’s ready to leave the Marines behind. He’s older than the young recruits that surround him, is feeling his age and is obviously suffering some kind of post-traumatic stress. Before he can finally quit though, circumstance -Alien invasion- drags him into combat once more. Theres a great film there, particularly how Eckhart plays the role.
However, the film is scuppered by really being an ensemble piece about the young Marines fresh from training who are dragged with Eckhart’s character into the combat. None of these Marines are in the slightest bit interesting and the actors are given little to work with, other than the usual movie cliches of fresh-faced recruits in a trial by fire. As it turns out, the film is an okay gung-ho action piece with good action sequences, effects, direction etc, but all that fine execution is undermined by the lack of identity and character. It lacks the central emotional core of emphasising with a protaganist. Bridget Moynahan in a welcome return to genre work is fine in her role as member of the public being rescued by the Marines, but that simply left me thinking that if Eckhart and Moynahan were left to themselves and the Marines were dumped we’d have had a far better film. Michelle Rodriquez, bless her, either cannot act or is simply becoming so typecast in these action-girl roles that she’s fast becoming her own worst enemy- there is simply nothing here to distinguish her from her work in Avatar and Machete, it’s like she’s simply playing the same role over and over. I quite like her, she has a great onscreen presence but she’s got to think twice about the roles she’s accepting.
So Battle:LA seems destined to be a so-so movie that plays on tv as a perenial action movie favourite for years and years. It’s fine for what it is. I confess to quite enjoying it, and I’d have liked to have seen what a sequel might have managed, but that seems unlikely considering an apparently mixed critical/box-office reception. Pity, theres sure as hell many worse films that get sequels greenlit.
Battle:LA is somewhat notable more for a background story regards the making of the film and the movie Skyline, that was shot as an independant production by the Brothers Strause whose own sfx company was contracted to do the fx for Battle:LA. Allegedly the Brothers Strause, directors of the simply truly utterly appaling AVP2, had access to all the design work/script etc for Battle:LA prior to later coming up with their own take on the subject matter. Frankly, Skyline is so obviously similar in subject matter and execution that it certainly raised eyebrows in the industry and sci-fi geek community. I guess it’s only because Battle:LA is itself so close to earlier films like Black Hawk Down/ Independence Day/District 9 etc that the studio didn’t feel it worthy of pushing ahead with litigation against the Skyline production.
Ah thats modern Hollywood. So many remakes and re-imagining’s its so hard to tell whats original and what’s a rip-off.
2011.36. The Tree Of Life (2011) **** August 10, 2011Posted by ghostof82 in : Film General , add a comment
Dir. Terrence Malick, 138 mins. Cinema release (limited)
So as the end-credits started and the auditorium lights came up, I turned to my mate Andy and asked him, “What the f— was that?” To which he kind of shrugged, looking as dumbstruck as I.
So yes, I finally managed to go see Malick’s The Tree Of Life, despite the best efforts of local cinema chains to make an eventual Blu-ray release my only option (Regards that video release, I noticed the other day on the BBFC site that a 28-min featurette Exploring The Tree Of Life has been passed, so that release is no doubt already in the works for early Autumn- earlier the better, I say, although it seems we may have to wait until November).
My reaction to the film was apparently shared by most of my fellow audience, slowly making their way out in moody silence. Just what the hell was that film? Bewildering, beautiful, turgidly slow and frustratingly enigmatic. I don’t mind the latter, you sort of expect that with Malick. Infact it’s one of the highlights of his movies. Here are films that expect you to work at it, demands that you pay attention and perhaps even fill in the gaps yourself. About as far removed from summer blockbusters as anything I can imagine. But did Malick go too far? Did the enigma simply highlight confused storytelling? Yes, I liked the film, thought most of it was astonishing… but beyond that I may need that return viewing on the eventual Blu-ray to really make my mind up about it. Now, The Thin Red Line I fell in love with at first sight. The Tree Of Life is just not that kind of movie.
But my god what a movie, what an experience. It starts, after a vision of an embryonic, perhaps womb-like image hangs hauntingly on the screen (a vision of God? Who knows?), with a couple learning of the death of their son. It is late-fifties, perhaps early-sixties… (if the film established the dates of these time-hopping scenes I missed it) … the couple have two other, younger sons. After a sequence of moody voiceovers with funereal music we cut to near-present day, as Sean Penn, one of those two remaining sons, walks forlorn through a modern, sterile landscape. A woman in his apartment does not seem to notice him. He looks lost as he wanders through busy streets, offices. Is he a ghost, I wondered, haunting/revisting the places/events of his life?
There follows the mother of all flashbacks, perhaps the sequence that dominates the film and no doubt one of the most discussed this year. In a sequence that recalls the most cosmic moments of 2001:A Space Odyssey, we seem to witness the birth of the universe, or certainly our galaxy, and then our solar system, and the Earth. I was also struck by similarities to a sequence in Disney’s Fantasia, as we witness a newborn, volcanic Earth and the first forms of life, followed by shockingly tranquil, peaceful footage of dinosaurs in a primeval landscape. I remember being struck by the thought no humans will set foot on this world for millions of years… this is a world untouched by us, that does not need us. Utterly convincing, it’s like the cinema screen was a window of a time machine. I must point out the masterful, jaw-dropping use of classical music during all of this, its an astonishing audio-visual experience. Time is slow. Primeval Nature is Ascendant. But all life is transient; an asteroid falls to Earth and creates an extinction event.
And we are back in the fifties, it seems, with the birth of a new baby, and we are with the couple we saw earlier, but they are younger, and the birth is the first of their three boys. And we see them grow up, and the film pretty much concerns itself with how they react to their loving, warm and emotional mother and the contrasting relationship they have with their stern, disciplinarian father. Until, at the end of the film, things really get f—ked up. I won’t discuss this as I wouldn’t want to ’spoil’ the movie for those who have yet to see it. Maybe I’ll go into it when I review the Blu-ray and a second viewing of the film. But if people got perplexed by that mother of all flashbacks, then what follows at films end will definitely lose them, and I think actually antagonise some viewers.
So, is the film a tribute to nature, and also a study of how dreamlike memories can seem when distanced by so much time? Is it just confusing, did Malick somehow lose control? Is the strange enigma of the time-shifting narrative deliberate or simply a desperate gambit to get away with it? It’s a hugely ambitious, bewitching, mysterious work. I walked out of the screening feeling shell-shocked, enthralled and confounded. I remember thinking, if only Carl Sagan could have lived to see it.
2011.35. Henry Of Navarre (2010) ** August 7, 2011Posted by ghostof82 in : Film General , 1 comment so far
Dir. Jo Baier, 155 mins, Blu-ray rental
A well-intentioned Medieval ‘epic’, this European film (a German/French/Spanish co-production that weighed in at a hefty 20 million euro budget) suffers comparison to other similar productions such as Elizabeth & The Golden Age, and also tv dramas such as The Tudors in particular. We get rich costume drama, fine sets, good photography, bloody battles, scenery-chewing performances, lusty sex scenes… sadly its all pretty much been done before, and to be frank, done better.
Being set in France during it’s period of religous wars between Protestants and Catholics in the late 16th-century, I wasn’t at all familiar with the subject and found it interesting. I suspect that the film just bit off more than it could chew, trying to encompass too big a subject and period of history. Characters tend to come and go without the viewer really ‘knowing’ them, as they play their part on the stage of history and either die or move on. Margot, in particular, who Henry had a forced/arranged marriage with to try secure some kind of peace, was a great character with a fiesty performance by Armelle Deutsch, but she simply disappears from the proceedings with hardly any explanation. Her slide from center stage may be historically accurate, but dramatically it caused a gap and I was distractedly wondering what had happened to her. I think her character was the subject of the earlier film La Reine Margot and I’m inclined to add it to my rental list. At 155 mins the film is plenty long enough for most viewers I guess but may have been better served, dramatically, by a three-hour running time/directors cut.
On the whole performances seemed fine if a little unneccessarily camp at times. Julien Boisselier in the title role does well although the script doesn’t really give him enough time for reflection, to see what makes him ‘tick’- too often he seems carried along by the unfolding events around him rather than really affecting them. Perhaps thats the point, as he seems to be a flawed character, but there isn’t time to really get to ‘know’ the man. The women in his life are beautiful but although we get to know Margot somewhat, Gabrielle is more of a one-dimensional depiction simply due to those same time constraints.
Production-wise the film betrays budget limitations that could have been negated by, again, limiting the scope of the project. On the whole it is rich and impressive, with fine costumes and sets, but the battle sequences aren’t really up to it, they needed more money, more time.
So, a well-meaning failure? Thats a bit harsh. It’s fine for what it is but doesn’t really hit the heights that you can tell the film-makers were aspiring to. Still, at least they were trying- you have to wonder about some of the tosh I’ve seen lately…
2011.34: The Tortured (2010) * August 6, 2011Posted by ghostof82 in : Film General , add a comment
Dir. Robert Lieberman, 84 min, Blu-ray rental
I have a theory about modern movie making. Directors cannot direct; script-writers cannot write; casting directors cannot cast, and actors cannot act. As proof of my theory I’d offer up The Tortured as exhibit A.
The script is pretty stupid. Coincidences fly thick and fast into yawning plot holes. An infant son is abducted by some nutter with a creepy basement. The child is (apparently) tortured and killed just before cops bust into the house. The parents are advised by phone that a child has been found and go to the morgue. There are no police with them, no counselors, no liaison officers, and they identify their child. As their relationship fractures, the court case follows and the killer, who it transpires has killed other children as numerous body parts were found in his garden, is given a lenient sentence of 25 years. At no point in film or during the court case do we learn how the boy was killed, how he was tortured, who the killer is, or why he did it, any details at all. The parents decide to deal out their own justice and kidnap the killer from the authorities. Fortunately one of the parents just so happens to be a doctor who knows how to torture people and keep them concious/alive, and the other just so happens to be a real estate agent who knows of a remote piece of property ideal for said torture. The doctor even steals medicine/methods of torture from an ambulance outside his hospital, a colleague not even slightly suspicious about the sports bag of goodies the doctor pulls from the ambulance.
Credibility? It’s just silly inane nonsense from start to finish. The actors don’t look or act like parents. They don’t convince for a moment. In an utterly baffling sequence the parents manage to steal the van that the killer is being transported in, drive it away without any pursuit and then manage to crash it, fortunately out of sight and near enough to the remote house for the torture. Said torture follows and grisly as it may be, none of it convinces, not the parents rage, the victims terror/pain, the make-up. The idiots even leave the basement curtains open so that anybody walking near the house could look in and see a bloodied man tied to the basement table and watch the torture too. Towards the end there is one of the greatest, most stupid WTF twists that I have ever had the misfortune to watch, and the film ends without a desperately needed payoff that is the ultimate cheat ever.
It’s a pretty painful movie to watch too, as the Blu-ray HD image looks like a very poor SD transfer, its so ugly and full of noise I think it may be one of the worst HD pictures I’ve ever seen. At one point the sky is all chequered like a chess board. So many modern films are heavily processed in post and this is a prime example of how pointless and horrible it is.
I’ve seen many bad movies this year and most of them have been horror films, and this one is possibly the worst.
2011.33: Season Of The Witch (2011) * August 3, 2011Posted by ghostof82 in : Film General , 2 comments
Dir. Dominic Sena, 96 mins, Blu-ray rental
Okay, even for our old friend Nic Cage this one is a disaster. Really, I think I’ve now seen my last Cage flick, he isn’t even trying on this and I’ve pretty much had enough of his so-called talent. He gets paid millions of dollars for his ‘craft’ and it just baffles me completely how he gets away with it. Soon as his Medieval knight opens his mouth and slurs his first lines with that accent/Elvis impression of his, the film has jumped the rails and just gets sillier going on. Cage and his buddy (an also-miscast Ron Pearlman hamming it up for the money) are two Crusaders who get a conscience and play truant. Early on in the film the two knights ride over a hill and see a poor-man’s Minas Tirith in a valley and utterly fail to comment on the vast cloud of black crows circling in the air above the city like a feathery cloud of Doom. It’s just that kind of stupid movie.
Best thing in this film is the performance by Claire Foy, as the ‘is she/isn’t she’ Witch. She is excellent as she turns from innocent damsel to shrewd manipulator, alternately sly and cunning and sweet and pure. She deserved a better picture and is sadly under-used by a script that sets up an interesting storyline but then ignores it completely as it winds up as a stupid cgi-riddled poor-man’s Exorcist.
The thing that really gets me about this film is that, instead of the straight-to-DVD release it deserved, it had a world-wide theatrical release while a genuinely impressive film like Solomon Kane still inexplicably languishes unreleased over in the States. Season Of The Witch is hampered by a poor script, poor direction, poor casting… if it had been filmed in the ’sixties by Hammer it could have been forgiven many of its faults, but for a reported $40 million movie made by supposedly A-list talent in 2008 its simply a crime. I just can’t understand how some films get green-lit, surely from the script alone this had trainwreck written all over it. Not good.