For the first round of the reviews and features, I decided to do something completely movie-related since I have just watched it a couple of hours ago… LOL, anyway, I will now review the 2011 flick “Season of the Witch” by Relativity Media. Announcement, spoiler alert, you have been warned!
(From Wikipedia: The Plot) Season of the Witch is a 2011 American period action film starring Nicolas Cage and directed by Dominic Sena. Cage stars alongside Ron Perlman as knights who return from the Crusades to find their homeland ruined by the Black Death. Two church elders accuse a girl (Claire Foy) of being a witch and being responsible for the destruction and command the knights to transport the girl to a monastery so the monks there can lift her curse from the land.
The Time Period: Well, I first have doubted my history for a bit when I realized the date was back in the time of the Crusades that was done to fight for the right of the Holy Land and return it back to the Christians and around the time of the Black Plague in the early 1300s. They gave a lot of justice with the costumes and the eerie scenery that is the small towns and the state on how it was back in those days. I must say I got scared and horrified as how it was back then… its a good thing its different now.
The Deeper Plot; Spoiler!: So the story begins with the witch hunts and how they are punished by the knights and prayed for by the priest. But one of the captured women suddenly sent a sign that sent shivers out of their bones thus got hanged and their bodies dragged down in the water. But after it, when the priest was praying something out of the book for the dead so their souls will never return back, one of the corpses suddenly moved and killed the poor priest. The scenario then changes years later in some of the battles of the Crusades and now focuses on the crusaders who have seen the bad images caused by their sieges and one of them accidentally killed a woman which caused him to leave the crusades despite the warnings done by the priest.
The two crusaders then found themselves looking for a town to get some supplies and along the way, seen the harsh realities that happened due to the Plague. But while getting their stocks, they were captured and requested to bring a witch to a monastery in one of the mountains to be judged so that the curse will be lifted. At first the crusaders didnt like the request but after seeing what the people have done to the witch, they agreed only if they get a guide, all their gear and all charges cleaned so that they may go. They gotten a group and then travelled to the mountain top.
Along the way, they have lost one of their own as the witch learns and feels she is being threatened by one of them. The first one was lead to his demise in a hallucination of his dead daughter, the second one was killed by a pack of wolves after they have reached a forest. But with that, they finally reached the place but quickly found out that everyone already gotten the plague before they got there. Realizing that the monks have the book called “Key of Solomon” which states all the prayers and rituals needed for a particular need. They headed back to the girl but then realized she was not just a witch, she was a demon. So, the demon got away but not without its proper vengeance. The group prepares for battle and realizes that the monks were trying to re-write the book so that it may be passed by to the other parts of the globe to combat the evils.
The great battle took place as the demon tried to control the corpses to kill the group. Of course some of them got killed in the process but the altar boy-turned-warrior finished the ritual while one of the crusaders left (the other one was killed by the demon by saving the other crusader) held the demon at bay while the ritual was being finished. In the end, the girl possessed by the demon was freed and the last crusader died due to blood loss. The altarboy and the girl then created graves for the 3 members of their party and the plagues vanished.
Pro: They got the whole feel of the times they got. I am not so sure with the causes of the Black Plague and the time period it was happening since I do know its in Europe most. I got scared though I have to admit. The language was perfectly understandable despite the old english they are using. They were accurate in how witch hunts are done and how the plague happened around the town. Sad tragic ending of them being killed one by one… the idea of sacrifice must not be taken lightly
Con: Its the typical one liner about religion and how it shouldnt be messed with in particular details. Reminds me much of Angels and Demons regarding how the church viewed the history of the scientist hunts back in the day. We can also see that there are some inconsistencies regarding years on how the plague started but we cannot say for certain the year when the two crusaders landed on that particular town since they deserted the crusades so I cannot attest to that detail on the year inconsistencies.
Rating: I give it a 7 out of 10 rating… not only was I partly scared, I was still looking for a much more creative scenes detailing how the plague really struck.