Blair Witch (2016) Review

Alex Stone, Entertainment Editor

On September 16th, theaters world-wide opened their doors, warmed up their projectors, and ushered audiences into a film people have been waiting seventeen years for…a sequel to The Blair Witch Project. 

In 1999, The Blair Witch Project shocked the world. The first film to primarily use the internet to market their film, the creators of The Blair Witch Project, Eduardo Sanchez and Daniel Myrick, weaved a menacing mythology of murder, witchcraft, and missing persons, convincing the world it was all true. Heather Donahue, Joshua Leonard, and Micheal Williams, who played fictional versions of themselves, were listed as ‘missing, presumed dead’ on websites like IMDb, and missing posters were plastered over towns during film festivals like Sundance, where the film screened. After an immense amount of fabricated evidence, like newspaper clippings and interviews, people believed these events to be real, so when audiences saw one of the scariest films ever created, they were physically shook. This independent horror film, that completely revived found footage style films, was made on a minuscule budget of $60,000 dollars, and created a phenomena that to this day hasn’t stopped.

Although Blair Witch is the fourth movie about the Blair Witch, it’s the only rightful sequel. Extra footage from the film was released earlier on in ’99 on the SciFi channel, a mockumentary on the mythology of the story, and Book of Shadows: Blair Witch 2 hit theaters in 2000, but was so bad that it’s basically ignored.

So how does this highly anticipated sequel really hold up to the shock-waves it’s predecessor sent into the world? It’s solid! The majority of the film is well executed – the woods are beautiful, the screenplay is good, but it’s almost a modernized regurgitation of the original film.  But, the movie is still an immensely fun experience, and to be honest, I was actually yelling in the theater because the movie is legitimately scary. Bottom line, if you liked The Blair Witch Project, you will enjoy Blair Witch.