Friday, January 16, 2009

The Blair Witch Project(1999)

In October of 1994 three student filmmakers disappeared in the woods near Burkittsville, Maryland, while shooting a documentary...A year later their footage was found. This was the line that captured the attention of movie- lovers in 1999. There was a belief that the film was actually a real-life documentary and that the people in it were really missing. Of course, it was all total fiction,but the ploy worked and the film was a huge success. It is directed by Daniel Myrick and Eduardo Sánchez who also wrote the movie.

It begins as a documentary about the legend of the Blair Witch who is supposed to haunt the woods near Burkitsville, Maryland. Three student film makers , Heather(Heather Donahue), Josh(Joshua Leonard) and Mike(Michael C. Williams) go out to the woods to find out if this is real. They interview locals in Burkitsville about it and they tell them about a hermit that used to live in the woods who kidnapped 8 kids in the 1940's and who brought them to his house in pairs so he could kill one while the other one faced into a corner. Then he would kill the other kid too. Another local, Mary Brown tells them of her encounter with something weird in the woods too.
They are warned by local fishermen not to be in the woods as they are haunted. Of course, they don't listen to them and they begin their entry into the woods.

They find seven graves in the woods and they wonder if they are the graves of the murdered kids. One of them knocks one over by accident and Heather puts it right carefully. They get lost and they have to set up camp for the night. They hear noises that night, but there is nothing around. Morning comes and they head for their car, but they are just lost so they have to camp another night. They hear cracking noises but they can't find anything. The next morning, they find three small stone graves outside their tents. It begins to get very tense at this point as they realise that something bad is going to happen to them unless they get the hell out of the woods. Mike kicks the map into the river which causes a huge argument. This is the low point of the film as they have to try and follow some path which might not even be right. They are beginning to lose hope now.

They find little stick figures hanging from the trees and they are uncertain what they mean. That night , there is something brushing against their tent and the disturbing sounds of kids crying.(That scared the crap out of me. I wasn't expecting it!) They run away from the tent in sheer panic and horror and they return the next morning to find that there is slime all over Josh's equipment. He is baffled and scared. As the day goes on, they begin to get very low as they realise that they are going in circles. That night, they make a camp and keep watch. The next morning, Josh has disappeared. Heather and Mike look for him, but he is gone. That night, they hear him crying out in the night but they can't find him. The following morning, they find a little bundle outside the tent with Josh's blood soaked clothing and teeth in it. Heather doesn't say anything to Mike. The last night, they hear Josh cry out again and they follow his voice to a ruined house in the woods. They try to locate him but to no avail. The last scene in the movie, we see Mike standing facing the corner while Heather comes towards him with the camera. She drops her camera and then she is silent, leaving us to ponder on what happened to her.

This movie is one that most people will have seen and I like it because it leaves everything to the imagination. We are left wondering what the hell happened to them and what were the noises etc and and that makes this film scarier. I would give this a 9/10. It's a modern cult classic.


Texas Wanderer said...

I remember the excitement when Blair Witch Project came out. Wow it doesn't seem like it was 10 year ago. I thought it was pretty cool, wasn't as good as I'd hoped but it wasn't a total flop either. It was different, and though I didn't really enjoy the movie itself, it broke the mold and was a worthy effort.

Now, the Part 2 is the one that I thought rocked. Hopefully we will see a review here about it as well?

Jigsaw said...

I will watch it again and I will review the second one in due course. I loved the Blair Witch Project as it is so different from the formulaic horror films. But, saying that, I love any horror films and I always have! Thanks for your comment!

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