The Witch was one of the most lauded and divisive horror movies of 2016, and today marks the 4-year anniversary of the film’s release. Practically coining the term “Elevated Horror” (or at least exemplifying it), genre fans debated not just the film’s perceived strengths and weaknesses, but what qualifies (and/or quantifies) horror. If it’s been a while, refamiliarize yourself with The Witch by watching the trailer at the top of the article.
In 1630 New England, panic and despair envelops a farmer, his wife and their children when youngest son Samuel suddenly vanishes. The family blames Thomasin, the oldest daughter who was watching the boy at the time of his disappearance. With suspicion and paranoia mounting, twin siblings Mercy and Jonas suspect Thomasin of witchcraft, testing the clan’s faith, loyalty and love to one another.
The Witch is the debut film from Robert Eggers; his sophomore release, The Lighthouse, was one of 2019’s best-reviewed horror movies. The Witch features astonishing performances from its ensemble cast, most notably by Anya Taylor-Joy (Morgan, Split, Glass, Thoroughbreds) and Ralph Ineson (Brahms: The Boy II).
Trivia: Although the film’s plot was intended to be taken literally, director Robert Eggers has spoken about a few small hints he and the filmmakers left throughout the film that one might interpret as reasoning behind the events, beyond the obvious supernatural. (Source)