Review: 'Blair Witch' Is a Shameful Remake

Ivy Richmond Sears ’19 / Emertainment Monthly Staff Writer
Do you remember when The Blair Witch Project came out and all of the positive reviews began flooding in? Well it seems director Adam Wingard does as well, because he made the same movie over again, expect unlike the original his movie, simply titled Blair Witch, isn’t good.
Blair Witch is a direct sequel of The Blair Witch Project and takes place 20 years after the original. It follows Heather Donahue’s little brother, James Donahue (James Allen McCune), as he and a group of friends begin making a documentary about their search for James’s long lost sister. Blair Witch uses many of the same themes from the original, occasionally even using some of the same footage. It takes place in the same woods and faces the same evil. The whole movie is one long exercise in déjà vu, and not in a good homage way, but instead, in a lazy didn’t have any new ideas kind of way. It becomes essentially a re-make of the original, which would be okay if it was a good re-make, but it isn’t.

Valorie Curry in Blair Witch. Photo Credit: Lionsgate.
Blair Witch uses the found footage style of it’s predecessor, however, unlike the original this doesn’t add to the film, but detracts from it. With the mystery gone the documentary style feels played out, and that isn’t helped by the fact that it’s filmed way too well. It doesn’t feel like a documentary, it feels like what it is — a movie pretending to be a documentary. At times it is obvious that none of the characters are doing the filming, at others the technology feels far too advanced for a group of college kids to own. In the end the style was distracting and ended the suspense. Adam Wingard would have been better off ditching the mockumentary and just making a plain old film, at least that would have felt more original.
Although un-original, Blair Witch does provide some truly gut wrenching scenes. The special effects and make up departments deserve a shout out, as they did stellar work that provides some genuinely harrowing moment. The scares don’t completely stop there, as Blair Witch does offer a few “jump out of your seat” moments throughout the film, which add a level of fun to the viewing experience, however, in the end that’s all it has. A few conventional scares in an otherwise mediocre movie. Overall, if it comes down to a choice between this movie and staying home, stay home.
Overall Grade: C-
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