The Witch is a hauntingly terrifying yet beautiful depiction of the fairytale witch brought into reality and is one of my favorite films of 2016 so far. The attention to detail and a strong reliance on historical folklore make it one of the more interesting horror films to be released in recent memory. It’s easy on the jump scares but heavy on the psychological mindplay, resulting in imagery that will no doubt haunt your dreams for many nights to come.
The Blu-ray quality is fantastic and really captures the rustic atmosphere of 17th Century New England. It’s a dark and harsh environment that makes living during that time period look absolutely dismal. To make matters worse, there’s an actual witch plaguing William and his helpless family. The film does an excellent job at enveloping you in this setting, making the horrors of being tormented by a witch all the more believable.
The bonus features are somewhat sparse and consist of one main behind-the-scenes featurette entitled The Witch: A Primal Folktale and a 28-minute Salem Panel Q&A with Cast and Crew. Thankfully they’re both rather interesting and provide a good look at the immense amount of detail that went into making the film. You really get a sense of just how much first time director Robert Eggers cared about the project. There’s even an Audio Commentary with Eggers for a more in depth discussion on the film. Rounding out the special features is a Design Gallery that features early concept art and sketches down by Eggers. The sketches in particular look amazing and are equally as disturbing as the film.
The Witch is without a doubt a must own Blu-ray for horror fans with its smart, shocking, and downright unsettling story of a New England family trying to survive on their own. I would have liked to see some more behind-the-scenes content for the film, but what’s present on the Blu-ray is suitable enough to satisfy your initial cravings.