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[personal profile] innocent_man
The Craft is a 90s movie about four teenage witches. It's a horror movie, I guess, insofar as it's a little too dark to fit modern fantasy. Robin Tunney plays the new girl in town, who hooks up with Fairuza Balk, Rachel True and a pre-Scream Neve Campbell to be the fourth in their circle.

This movie feels like someone with a Wiccan friend wrote a screenplay. Like, the movie seems to be aware that Wicca/witchcraft (and before anyone says anything, I know that some folks think there's a difference, I used to be Wiccan, I don't care about the terminology because it's all pretendy-fun-time anyway) is a real thing and that practitioners thereof are generally nonviolent, nonoffensive, like their candles and their rituals, and so on. But then there's this weird "Manon" thing that the girls worship, which they apparently made up for the movie.

What I find weird isn't that they made up a deity; whatever, all deities are made up. What I find sort of strange is that (now that I'm reading a little more about the movie), they had consultants, including Fairuza Balk who is or was Wiccan, on the film...and no one thought that a goddess might be a better idea? Not that Wiccans don't worship both (I know I did), but a coven of four teenage girls and it's a dude they glom onto? Especially as man-angry as Nancy (Balk's character) is?

I saw this movie several times when it was new, and I liked it well enough then. But now that I'm watching it with the wisdom of years (and not being, y'know, religious anymore), I find that, as a film, it's pretty...well, basic. We get the scene Sarah (Tunney) and Chris (Skeet Ulrich). She rejects his OMG SEX NOW. He spreads lies. Boom, he's a douche. We see Rachel True (who was almost 30 when this was made...wtf, there are no actual teenagers in Hollywood?) getting verbally abused by Christine Taylor (who would later go on to marry Ben Stiller and thus be in all of his movies). And she asks why, and the answer is, "I don't like Negroids." Really? We can't get any more depth than that? She has to announce "ME AM MINOR VILLAIN CHARACTER!"? Oh, and then Neve Campbell's scene with her burn scars. Those scars are never explained, but when the characters are doing their invocation ritual (which, if you read the trivia on IMDB, apparently had OMG SPOOOOOOOOOOOOKY stuff happen with it...maybe because they did it by the sea in a storm, whatcha think?), she's calling the element of fire. See, that had the potential to be interesting, but they just rode right by it.

And then after they've cast their spells, we get the same characters in the same order resolving their scenes. There's little sense of how much time passes, the pacing is clumsy and it feels very abrupt. And, of course, the CGI is kind of crap by today's standards.

But hey, Fairuza Balk is hot in a scary kind of way. So there's that.

My Grade: D+
Rewatch value: Low. It's not quite bad enough to be fun to yell at, which is a shame.

Next up: Crank

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January 2013

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