The Last Witch Hunter (15) | Home Ents Review
Dir. Breck Eisner, US, 2015, 102 mins
Cast: Vin Diesel, Rose Leslie, Elijah Wood, Michael Caine
Vin Diesel plays Kaulder, the mighty warrior, who, hundreds of years ago, vanquished the all-powerful Witch Queen, spreader of the black plague, and defeated, once and for all, the witches who had wreaked bloodshed on the world for centuries. But in moments before her death the Witch Queen cursed Kaulder with immortality, separating him from his beloved family for ever. Today, eight hundred years later, Kaulder, as The Last Witch Hunter, is the only one of his kind remaining and only he stands between humanity and the witches that secretly still live in our midst. The witch hunter Kaulder and The Axe and Cross that judges and imprisons witches in the darkness are responsible for keeping the world in peace, with the priest, Dolan 36th, played by Michael Caine, as the liaison between The Axe and Cross and Kaulder, and his wannabe successor, Dolan 37th played by Elijah Wood. Rose Leslie as Chloe, a special type of witch known as a dreamwalker is Kalder’s partner.
With the Witch Queen resurrected, Kaulder, as the last witch hunter, is drawn into an epic battle which will determine the survival of the human race, and is all that stands between humanity and the combined forces of the most horrifying witches in history as he comes face-to-face with evil in this no-holds barred fantasy adventure with big swords, big battles and big action.
As well as being a spectacular super action movie, it is also very much a frightening supernatural thriller. I could be wrong, but I feel this is one which could attain a cult following and status. It has more to it than a crash, bang wallop actioner. It has lovely atmospheric and artistic sets put together with great care and an eye for detail. Yes, it is full of CGI visual effects, but they blend well into the scenes.
All in all I enjoyed The Last Witch Hunter. I thought it was great entertainment – even thought-provoking. I detected some influence of The Exorcist and The Omen and other classics.
If the film isn’t enough then the bonus is the well thought out, quality special features – a commentary with director, Breck Eisner; Crafting the Magic – a thirty minute how The Last Witch Hunter was made; The Last Witch Hunter Sizzle Reel – Paint It Black (The trailer!); and two deleted scenes. But, to me, the real extra bonus is The Origins of the Axe and Cross. This comprises four short animations: Before Mankind, The Witch Lords, The Witch Hunter, and Witches Live Among Us. Summit Entertainment and DeviantArt summoned four young animators (ages 24 – 31) to create custom animations based on exclusive, unreleased scenes from The Last Witch Hunter and gave them sixty days to create their animations. The animations average just over two minutes long and the animators were August Floren from Sweden, Meredith Nolan USA, Austin Hillebrecht USA, and Robertas Nevecka from Lithuania.
I well recommend this supernatural action movie. It seems a sequel is already on the way!
Review by Eric Jukes
Steelbook collectors will definitely want to add this striking steelbook to their collection and the Blu-ray steelbook is available exclusively from Zavvi.
The Last Witch Hunter is out now on Digital HD, Blu-ray and DVD, courtesy of Entertainment One.