I loved the original Blair Witch. It’s one of my favorite horror films and it still holds up. It was the birth of the found footage genre, which is done over and over again today and while this sequel is better than Book of Shadows (which is not too hard considering that movie sucks) it doesn’t come close to match the greatness of the original.
The film follows James Donohue who decides to go looking for his sister Heather who has been lost for fifteen years when he sees a YouTube video that would might indicate that she is still alive. So he embarks with his friends on quest to the haunted woods of Burkittsville Maryland where the Blair Witch resides.
Now, this movie has a lot of pros and cons. Let’s start with the cons first. The characters are extremely boring and they aren’t likeable. Like at all. They’re extremely dumb, cliché horror movie characters and their characterization are almost nonexistent. The set-up is pretty boring and there’s barely any attempt to flesh out these characters.
You’re waiting for them to die just like you know they’re going to because this is a horror movie. The original Blair Witch had likeable, fun characters, so when shit hits the fan you actually care about them and you want them to survive this horrific situation. Here, you don’t care about anyone and they really make dumb, stupid decisions every ten minutes. Also, there are too many fucking jump scares, which completely takes you out of the film every time it happens.
I’ve never felt once that this was an actual found footage film like the original Blair Witch Project, where people actually thought that the film was real. Even critics weren’t sure if this was an actual documentary. Roger Ebert himself didn’t actually know if this was a real documentary or not. That’s how convincing and real the actors performances of the original Blair Witch actually we’re. James Allen McCune was really subpar as James and Brandon Scott who plays Peter was just awful in this movie. He had no purpose of being there and he just kept getting on my nerves. The best actor in this film is hands down Valorie Curry. She isn’t in the film a lot, but you can tell that she is the most accomplished actress of the entire cast.
The film is also a rehash of the first movie almost to the letter, which was a bit disappointing and it could have found more creative and innovative scares. It adds a drone (which was totally wasted) and a few cameras that show different points of views but I would have liked to have seen more effective scares sprinkled through out the film.
Now, for the pros. The last twenty minutes are really scary and effective. They harken back to the original Blair Witch and expand on the mythology of the franchise and explains but at the same time raises more questions in a good way. The ending of this film is extremely suspenseful and it’s what I wanted the entire movie to be like and I wouldn’t mind seeing a Blair Witch 3 (counting Book of Shadows out of the equation). The ending of the movie actually saves this movie in my opinion and it makes the movie much better.
Overall, Blair Witch is an okay horror movie that has subpar acting and an overabundance amount of jump scares, but the ending is creepy and satisfying enough to warrant another walk in the haunted woods of Burkittsville.