I still remember when The Blair Witch Project came out 17 years ago. The sheer lunacy around its marketing campaign, people actually thinking if the footage itself was real, if we were going to see these three kids actually get killed on camera. Humanity can be pretty savage.
Well, it turned out to just be a movie, which disappointed many savage folks, and it ended up being a damn good one if you can get on board with all of the ambiguity.
Blair Witch is for all intents and purposes, a worthy follow up to the original, while keeping the same found footage format, while also giving it an update. The story centers around James (James Allen McCune) finally heading back out to the infamous Blair Witch woods to find out what happened to his sister who disappeared 20 years prior. Joined by Lisa (Callie Hernandez), Peter (Brandon Scott), and Ashley (Corbin Reid), they come to find out that the Blair Witch may be more than just a legend.
I had no idea how the hell the filmmakers were going to follow up a Blair Witch sequel after the piece of shit that was Book of Shadows: Blair Witch 2. Not only was the film really terrible, but it made no fucking sense. So I entered the film with some trepidation, but I had some confidence in director Adam Wingard and writer Simon Barrett (both of You’re Next and The Guest fame).
The filmmakers both knew that the key to making a film in this franchise work is trying to keep the simplicity of the original piece. And they do, for the most part. The ending is like if The Blair Witch Project had a budget, which I think a lot of you are going to dig.
As far as sequels released over a decade after its relevance was well past due, it’s a fun little horror film. I personally prefer the filmmakers’ earlier work, but I still have to admire the boldness that came with doing an entry in an old relic of a horror series. If you’re looking for a nostalgia trip, then this is perfect for your neck of the woods.