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Season of the Witch 2011 PG-13 CC

14th-century knights transport a suspected witch to a monastery, where monks deduce her powers could be the source of the Black Plague.

Starring:
Nicholas Cage, Ron Perlman
Runtime:
1 hour, 34 minutes

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Product Details

Genres Adventure, Action, Mystery
Director Dominic Sena
Starring Nicholas Cage, Ron Perlman
Supporting actors Stephen Graham, Christopher Lee, Claire Foy
Studio Relativity Media
MPAA rating PG-13 (Parents Strongly Cautioned)
Captions and subtitles English Details
Purchase rights Stream instantly and download to 2 locations Details
Format Amazon Video (streaming online video and digital download)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By David A. Wend on May 16, 2011
Format: DVD
The best reason for seeing Season of the Witch is partnership between Behmen (Nicholas Cage) and Felson (Ron Perlman). Spoilers follow. Both are crusaders and the film opens with a snapshot of their various battles with a running bet they have that the one who kills the least of the ungodly enemy will buy drinks. This good humored slaughter goes on until one day while laying siege to a town Behmen kills a woman and wants nothing further to do with fighting. Behmen and Felson are outcasts because they have broken their vows to server the church. As they journey home they find that a plague has decimated the country and at the first city they come to the reason for the plague is a girl (Claire Foy) who is said to be a witch. Behmen and Felson are recognized and asked to accompany the witch to a distant monastery for trail, which they do after spending a night in a dungeon. Christopher Lee has a small part as Cardinal D'Ambroise although he is unrecognizable (being a victim of the plague) except for his voice. The journey to see justice occupies the rest of the film as the travelers, led by a merchant who traffics in fake relics (Stephen Graham).

The production is very good with the filth and squalor of the 14th century well represented. The costumes were thoughtfully designed and the special effects are very effective and the makeup used for plague victims was very effective. Nicolas Cage turns in a good but not overly convincing performance; Ron Perlman is easier to see in the role of a crusader. Stephen Campbell Moore (from the Bank Job) does a convincing job playing the priest Debelzag who is determined to see the witch gets her trial. The film has some suspenseful movements, such as when the witch calls up wolves to attack her escort. However, much of the film, such as when the wagon with the imprisoned witch has to cross a crumbling wooden bridge, is predictable. The film is worth seeing if you like B movies and are in the mood.
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Format: DVD
The movie starts out in 1235 AD as 3 women accused of witchcraft are hung and drowned. The priest wants the bodies pulled up from the water so he can perform a ritual on them so they can't return from the dead. As always, resurrected witches have more power than when they were alive. This was all done to show you the ritual book. We jump ahead to 1332 AD with the savoy Nickolas Cage and Ron Perlman fighting in the crusades. After 7 years of rape, killing, pillage and plunder in the name of God's only son, Cage decides this is wrong and calls it quits. Cage and Perlman leave the crusades. Through a series of events, they agree to escort a girl accused of witchcraft, to a group of monks 6 days travel away, so they can judge her. They believe she caused the plague. They get as a guide a man who sold fake church artifacts.

Weird things happen along the way as we suspect the girl really is a witch. The Cardinal had a very distinguished voice, which can be no one other than Christopher Lee, whose career has gone down hill since he was locked away in a Tower. The special effects were good, but the plot lacked. The ending of the story was all wrong and should have related more to the initial 1235 A.D. scene. The guide, who was a colorful character was severely under utilized. They could of had a few stories about how he forged artifacts, or how many of the same church relic he sold. They did not. Kid friendly film in that there is no nudity, sex, or f-bombs.
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Just got back from seeing this movie in the movie theater. The critical reviews for the movie were bad, however I like true `B' movies, so I went in with an open mind.

The Story

I felt the story was very good, and it had a few twists and turns, nothing huge but if you allowed yourself to buy in to the world of the movie, they present some good ethical dilemmas that the characters have to deal with. Unlike many sword and sandal movies here you are never completely comfortable with who you are supposed to root for or what the correct moral viewpoint is. In the end, they explain things with a nice little twist that sets you up for a second viewing of the film.

Production Values

Honestly, the look of the film and the locations are top shelf. The much maligned CGI works serviceably throughout the film until the end, where it does fall short in presenting the malice and impact of the final villain. I enjoyed the look of the beginning of the film and the crusades, and the dark muddy look of Europe upon the characters return. The locations in the middle of the movie are magnificent and epic, sweepingly filmed with very good cinematography.

Music

The music it terrific and raises the entire level of the production. The music is epic, exciting, and some of the better I have heard.

Acting

The acting is good, there are a few awkward exchanged here and there but overall everyone does a fine job. The standout performance is that of the actress playing the imprisoned witch, her performance is layered, complex, malevolent, innocent, evil, honest, creepy, blameless, and any other acronym you want.
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Format: Blu-ray
As anyone who knows me is well aware, I'm a self-professed masochist; if there's an opportunity for me to experience something excruciating, I jump at it (keep that in mind, ladies). Obviously, when I saw that Season of the Witch had an abysmal 4% on Rotten Tomatoes, I simply couldn't resist. I quickly found out, however, that I was sort of in the minority on this one (who knew?!)--after petitioning all of my friends, only one was intrepid enough to brave the theaters with me. We planned the trip for early Friday morning, our mounting excitement making Thursday's sleep an ephemeral affair. I awoke that day to an act of God. In his infinite wisdom, he had bestowed upon me a migraine most malicious in an effort to prevent one of his flock from the even greater pain of watching Nicolas Cage play a disillusioned Knight in a fantasy movie.

But I am not a God-fearing man, and so, despite the advice of my friends, despite the admonitions of the critics, despite the wind and the cold and the rain, despite even the divine hand of God himself, I rose from the beanbag chair that was my bed and journeyed forth toward almost certain disappointment. After all, if The Last Airbender, a memory better left forgotten, had received a 7%, what hope did Season of the Witch have? I met Dphil, the intrepid friend, at the gates and handed my ticket to the clerk, who, with his snarling remarks, unkempt hair, and bared teeth, could have (save for the two missing heads) passed for the guardian Cerberus. My companion and I took our seats and surveyed the scene. I have to be honest with you here.
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22 Comments 158 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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