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The Witch

  • 2016
  • R
  • 90min
  • 91%
  • 6.8 / 10

The Witch is a period piece set in seventeenth-century New England, during the height of the Puritanical period of American colonization, and a time of deep religious devotion. As such, the occult and witchcraft are particularly vile and heretical offenses to the people of the region. The plot focuses on a family banished from their colony, living in a rough rural area. There, they endure the hardships of colonial life, and at the same time, they fall victim to an evil presence, a witch living in the woods. As the film progresses, we see the downward spiral of their mental state as they try to cope with the supernatural occurrences set upon them by the witch's curse.

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The film has been praised by critics for its authenticity and devotion to portraying colonial life in 1600s America, with design work on costumes and sets lending a great sense of realism to the period piece. Historically, the Puritans were English Protestants who sought to reform the Church of England. They sailed for America holding on to their belief in the Bible. They established themselves into the Massachusetts Bay Colony, naming their town Boston. They strictly followed the teachings of John Calvin. Their basic beliefs constituted of total depravity from temptation and sin, predestination, limited atonement (only those selected by God are saved by Christ’s atonement on the cross), being irresistible to God’s grace, and persevering for one’s salvation.

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about the movie

The Witch, or as it is officially spelled The VVitch, is a 2016 horror film written and directed by Robert Eggers. The movie is Eggers' first directorial effort, having previously worked as a production designer on the film Spirit Cabinet. The movie is produced by Rodrigo Teixeira, Lars Knudsen, and Daniel Bekerman, among others, and stars Anya Taylor-Joy, Ralph Ineson, and Kate Dickie. The film's production was handled by a number of companies, including Parts and Labor, RT Features, Rook Nest, and Maiden Voyage Pictures, and distributed by A24, with a budget of just $4 million, earning over $40 million during its theatrical run.