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Generally unfavorable reviews - based on 27 Critics What's this?

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5.0

Mixed or average reviews- based on 123 Ratings

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  • Starring: , ,
  • Summary: A heroic Crusader and his closest friend return home after decades of fierce fighting, only to find their world destroyed by the Plague. The church elders, convinced that a girl accused of being a witch is responsible for the devastation, command the two to transport the strange girl to aA heroic Crusader and his closest friend return home after decades of fierce fighting, only to find their world destroyed by the Plague. The church elders, convinced that a girl accused of being a witch is responsible for the devastation, command the two to transport the strange girl to a remote monastery where monks will perform an ancient ritual to rid the land of her curse. They embark on a harrowing, action-filled journey that will test their strength and courage as they discover the girl's dark secret and find themselves battling a terrifyingly powerful force that will determine the fate of the world. (Relativity Media) Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 0 out of 27
  2. Negative: 16 out of 27
  1. Reviewed by: Stephanie Zacharek
    Jan 6, 2011
    55
    Season of the Witch is barely even a Nicolas Cage movie. He wanders through the picture, zombified.
  2. 50
    The pretty good stuff comes early, when Nic and Ron, weary of wasting women and children, suffer an attack of conscience and desert the Crusades.
  3. Reviewed by: Peter Rainer
    Jan 7, 2011
    42
    It would take a lot more than holy water to rescue Season of the Witch from mediocrity.
  4. Reviewed by: Kyle Smith
    Jan 7, 2011
    38
    A movie that appears to have been shot entirely on leftover sets from "Monty Python and the Holy Grail."
  5. Reviewed by: Mark Olsen
    Jan 6, 2011
    30
    Season of the Witch is at its worst when it tries to be a straight-ahead action-adventure film. The early sequence set against the epic battles of the Crusades is almost brazenly bad with its unconvincing "300"-style special effects.
  6. Reviewed by: Mark Jenkins
    Jan 10, 2011
    25
    The movie proceeds in near darkness, perhaps to obscure its shoddy special effects, but the pervasive gloom is less discouraging than star Nicolas Cage's indifferent performance.
  7. Reviewed by: Joe Morgenstern
    Jan 6, 2011
    10
    Mr. Cage's knight ends up playing second banana to a digital devil. Welcome to the January dead zone.

See all 27 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 16 out of 37
  2. Negative: 7 out of 37
  1. Jan 17, 2011
    10
    Incredibly cliched and incredibly enjoyable. Nic's hair is difficult to get past, as is the appalling script, but it's actually likable, withIncredibly cliched and incredibly enjoyable. Nic's hair is difficult to get past, as is the appalling script, but it's actually likable, with plenty of attractive locations, a great performance by the female ?witch and a buddy-movie feel between Nic Cage and Ron Perlman. It's undemanding but any film which opens with an old crone of a witch vomiting into a man's face gets my thumbs-up as a good night's mindless entertainment. Collapse
  2. Jan 7, 2011
    8
    If you loved other classic nic cage films as Wicker Man and Ghost Rider then you will love Season of the Witch.. Ron Perlman is awesome asIf you loved other classic nic cage films as Wicker Man and Ghost Rider then you will love Season of the Witch.. Ron Perlman is awesome as well and honestly if you go to movies to smell your own farts then go watch Black Swan and save some more children. Expand
  3. Jun 28, 2011
    7
    My opinion is that this movie has been wrongly rated; The acting is alright, the story line is fairly interesting and the graphics were prettyMy opinion is that this movie has been wrongly rated; The acting is alright, the story line is fairly interesting and the graphics were pretty good. It is a reasonable effort for Nicholas Cage and a fairly good job for Ron Perlman, they are the only reason that the movie was moderately enjoyable; the other actors did a fairly satisfactory job. I enjoyed watching it and I recommend this to anybody who likes either Nicholas Cage or Ron Perlman and probably people who like the knight and armor/ dragon slaying kind of movies, its up to you if its worth to buy, but it is definitely worth renting it. Expand
  4. Aug 18, 2011
    5
    Before Reviewing I am saying that Nico Cage is my favorite actor !
    This type of road movie (By this type i meant darker tone ) is my favorite
    Before Reviewing I am saying that Nico Cage is my favorite actor !
    This type of road movie (By this type i meant darker tone ) is my favorite ! Although this movie had my favorite actor Cage it had many problem ! story and Directing was week and failed to create suspension !

    Story : .7/2 (Could be lot better and awesome story)
    Directing : .8/2 (Failed the make it a good movie)
    Acting : 1.3/2 (Nico Cage is the best) Sound : 1.1/2 (Not that good)
    Edit & Effect : 1.5 (The most positive side of the movie)
    OVERALL : 5.4
    Expand
  5. Sep 10, 2013
    4
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Somewhere in medieval Europe, three women are sentenced to death as penalty for witchcraft, then hanged and drowned for their crimes. All our preconceptions about the brutality and futility of the classic witch trial are brought to the forefront, as the youngest begs for mercy.

    The first scene is an introductory vignette of misdirection, as one of the hanged women returns to life and dispatches the sentencing priest. In this universe, the presence of actual witches and demons and the success of biblical incantations in suppressing them lends credence to the church's claims, and makes them somewhat justified in their precautions.

    The story stars Nicolas Cage, who has nothing if not a varied filmography. Here, he appears as Teutonic knight named Behman, who returns from the crusades with his friend and comrade Felson (Ron Perlman) to find his homeland ravaged by the Black Death. The scene is set for the duo though a montage of battles chronicling the decades long Crusade, through desert, snow, day and night, all of which seem to be shot on a soundstage, in contrast to the later Alpine location shoots. The characters become disillusioned with the senseless killing, and decide to abscond and return home.

    It's not particularly good, but it is entertainingly over the top. Behman and Felson are swiftly recruited to escort a young woman, Anna (Claire Foy), who has confessed to witchcraft, to a monastery where she will stand trial, and become the subject of a ritual designed to halt the onslaught of the plague. They assemble a fellowship that pales in comparison to any Lord of the Rings movie, and set off on a road fraught with peril, through the oppressive forests of Styria (now modern day Austria and Slovenia).

    The intention is really to create more of a horror picture than a historical action adventure, as evidenced by the dark colour palette, the central European setting full of Gothic spires and dense forests, and the frequents sights of the afflicted, covered in grim pustules. The genre is further cemented by a cameo from veteran horror star Christopher Lee.

    Director Dominic Sena worked with Cage on Gone in 60 Seconds (2000). He was criticised as being a boring director then, and regrettably does little to shift this label now. Thematically, the two works couldn't be further apart, so his ambition is to be admired. Yet the studio was unimpressed with test screenings, and the film was re-edited before release, with some scenes re-shot with a different director, the uncredited Brett Ratner, of Rush Hour and Prison Break fame.

    It's a shame, because the rest of the production is actually very high quality, with convincing sets, costumes, and fight choreography. The overall darkness of the film, and the atmosphere of deep forests and abandoned villages, effectively gives the entire piece a foreboding overtone.

    The main 'victim' of the piece is Anna, who we are meant to side with as the innocent receiving end of the church's unforgiving stance against witchcraft. After all, her 'confession' was eked out under torture. But flashes of violence and surprising strength belie a darker streak within her. Different members of the group react to her accordingly: the young squire Kay would see her released, whilst unscrupulous guide Hagamar favours killing her swiftly, to end a futile quest. Behman, weary of death and killing, remains ambiguous, focusing on holding the group together.

    Again, misdirection is the intention of the film, and it's hard to know what to make of Anna. She saves one member of the group from certain death, but summons wolves to savage another. On some level, she seems to be passing judgement based on the level of trust each of her captors affords her, which itself is unsettling enough to rob her of her little sympathy and paint Kay as a naïve idealist.

    Half the time, characters debate the virtues of honour or the church, in typical pseudo medieval Hollywood language. The rest of the time they delve into American colloquialisms. Of course, this is an attempt to write the friendship and banter between Cage and Perlman; it's just not very convincing. Or at least it might be in a buddy cop movie, and not an ominous, medieval environment, heavy with religious symbolism. The film takes itself too seriously the rest of the time to justify the style of humour.

    On the other end of the spectrum, Cage gets some of my favourite lines (not necessarily for the right reasons), delivered completely deadpan: “There is no hope here. Only plague.” Say what you will about Cage, but he definitely has entertainment value.

    Really, the film’s indecisiveness is the main problem, as the film makers do not seem to know whether they are making a dark and suspenseful thriller, or a buddy road movie. A film squarely in the middle achieves neither. The script too, lets everybody down. It’s certainly watchable as a B-movie romp, so it is perhaps fitting that I viewed this film in its natural home of late night television.
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  6. Aug 23, 2011
    4
    This wasn't as bad as I had expected. I didn't expect much, and proceeding with that disposition, I enjoyed the witchcraft, demonicThis wasn't as bad as I had expected. I didn't expect much, and proceeding with that disposition, I enjoyed the witchcraft, demonic possessions, and flashy special effects. The "witch" was an interesting character and this film does well in confusing the audience sentiment towards her. Cage occasionally sounded like he was trying to pull off some kind of English accent at times, and it was not attractive. However, as always, Cage does try hard in every role he attempts, and I found a bit of enjoyment throughout this film. What was with the never-ending, relentless, unapologetic multi-battle opening sequence all about? I'm glad I watched it at home however. Expand
  7. May 14, 2011
    0
    Its pretty close to impossible to like this film. Of course i respect all reviews but this film was not the best way to start a new year ofIts pretty close to impossible to like this film. Of course i respect all reviews but this film was not the best way to start a new year of trips to the movies. It was overly cliched and dull. And the acting was terrible except for Ron Perlman who in my opinion was the only entertainment i got out of this film Expand

See all 37 User Reviews

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