Title – The Last Witch Hunter (2015)
Director – Breck Eisner (Sahara)
Cast – Vin Diesel, Rose Leslie, Elijah Wood, Michael Caine, Ólafur Darri Ólafsson, Joseph Gilgun
Plot – Cursed by a witch to live a life of immortality, Kaulder (Diesel) the last known witch hunter, must with the help of his priest off-sider Dolan 37th (Wood) and potion making dream walker Chloe (Leslie) track down the person responsible for cursing his friend Dolan 36th (Caine) and the person more than likely intent on breaking the witch and human peace treaty.
“Do you know what I’m afraid of? Nothing”
Review by Eddie on 11/02/2016
Far more fun than it really has any right to be, this newest Vin Diesel wannabe franchise starter (is it in his contract to demand potential sequels?) is a movie that does exactly as its title would suggest and while it’s got about as many memorable scenes as Vin Diesel’s acting ranges (eg; not many), The Last Witch Hunter’s runtime wizzes by and there are enough decent ideas thrown around the mix here that perhaps a franchise isn’t exactly the worst thing that could happen next once the credits roll.
Directed by Sahara and The Crazies helmer Breck Eisner, Witch Hunter wastes little time in throwing the audience into a modern day world in which witches and similar nasties inhabit our everyday lives without interrupting us mere mortals, as conveniently described to us the viewer by a now to be expected Michael Caine narration, whose been using his old blighter accent well when explaining important facets of information or recounting Dylan Thomas poems in recent years.
It’s clear Eisner and his action oriented star in the form of Diesel were keen to not delve too deep into this story which when examined closely is all types of silly. From church orders of secret witch hunting guardians, gummi bear trees and witch only nightclubs, Witch Hunter has a pretty wild world at its disposal and it’s a good thing it never tries too hard to play itself overly serious as if it did, it’s likely the audience would’ve failed to give it any type of benefit of the doubt treatment.
Where The Witch Hunter finds itself at its best is between a somewhat miscast Diesel (who struggles with the films more sombre moments) and side characters like Rose Leslie’s dreamwalker Chloe or Elijah Wood’s witch hating priest Dolan 37th and some of the stories more bizarre almost 80’s like concepts make it feel like a film cut from another time period entirely. Where The Witch Hunter finds itself treading water, is in a sub-standard plot that closes out in a highly tame finale, some crudely constructed dialogue and some unimaginative action scenes that seem ripped straight from a video game.
Big, dumb and brain numbingly fun, if you don’t expect anything more than some forgettable yet bearable movie making silliness then The Last Witch Hunter will prove the perfect companion to a lazy night on the couch and with glimpses of even more potential, there might just be those that find themselves looking forward to a possible sequel, no doubt none more so than Vin Diesel himself.
2 ½ Gummi Bear trees out of 5