A scary tale was released, filmed by Robert Zemeckis based on the book by Roald Dahl. Despite the big names, the picture did not become an event, but for a one-time viewing on Halloween, it will do just fine.

Alabama, 1968. The orphaned boy (Jazir Bruno), whose parents died in a car accident, was taken to her by his grandmother (Octavia Spencer), a good healer and a big fan of Motown artists. One day the boy runs into a strange woman with gloves to the elbows and something like a turban on her head, and the grandma has to tell her grandson about witches - this is how they, it turns out, look. Fleeing from evil spirits, grandmother and grandson move from home to a luxury hotel, not suspecting that more than eight dozen witches will gather here, led by the Supreme Witch (Anne Hathaway), in whose bald, covered with scabs. A terrible plan has ripened in my head - to turn all American kids into mice.

The viewer rating on Rotten Tomatoes (only 39% positive) may lead to sad reflections, but no, "The Witches", of course, no failure: it is mostly quite cheerful and in places, as it should (given the fact that the author original source - Roald Dahl), an eerie fairy tale, which is not ashamed to show the kids on Halloween. However, the film, of course, causes slight disappointment: after all, not the last people in the industry were engaged in it - Robert Zemeckis was responsible for directing, Guillermo del Toro helped him write the script, he also produced the movie with Alfonso Cuaron. Alas, "The Witches" is the very case when the mountain gave birth to a mouse (and in every sense), and a bright picture is not able to distract an adult viewer from episodes that cause bewilderment. For example, an attempt to rid the story of the misogynistic accent of the original (which nowadays sounds like a sentence) looks rather awkward,shifting attention to the problem of segregation and class inequality. For the sake of this, the boy and his grandmother were made African-American, the action was transferred to the American South of the late 1960s and it was explained that witches mostly kill children from poor families - such, they say, no one will miss. All these changes in the end look rather optional and do not really work: for example, among the witches themselves there are enough dark-skinned ones, and their first significant victim right in the hotel is the gluttonous offspring of pompous white rich people.


At the same time, the film was positioned as a film adaptation close to the text (Zemeckis himself spoke about this), but this concerns only the conventionally bleak ending. However, comparing a film adaptation with a book is one of the most meaningless activities in the world, but one can compare Zemeckis's version with the first film adaptation of the same "Witches", which was shot thirty years ago by the outstanding Briton Nicholas Rogue. And the comparison will not be in favor of the new "Witches". Yes, Rogue quite awkwardly fastened a happy ending to his ribbon, which aroused Dahl's anger, but on the whole he got an inventive, lively, and most importantly - a truly creepy picture (with the exception of the already mentioned ending, which, however, can also be justified a slight bout of humanistic pathos). And also the old version - accurate and witty, without allusions for the sake of a catchphrase: where Rogue deftly quotes Eisenstein's "Battleship Potemkin"Shakespeare's Hamlet. Another not very good news: all desperate efforts of Anne Hathaway to bend down to the model camp villainess go to pieces - the actress, as it turned out, is catastrophically not eccentric (unlike Angelica Houston in the film adaptation of Rogue, although such assessments are, of course, pure taste).

However, in general, as already mentioned, the "Witches" are quite capable of captivating a not too much-studied child, which is no longer so bad. And it is curious that in America the film, bypassing the rental, immediately appeared on the Internet - it is clear that not from a good life, but because of the pandemic that continues to gain momentum. But, ironically, it is in the stream of average pictures for home viewing for The Witches that they belong - somewhere in the garden of duty horror movies that traditionally make up the repertoire of streamers on Halloween and which can be watched with half an eye. For Zemeckis, this is definitely a step back - after all, even his not most successful "Christmas Story" in 2009 looked much more creepy and exciting.

Things to know (Q&A)

Is the witches worth watching?

Robert Zemeckis' adaptation of Roald Dahl's fantastical and terrifying novel The Witches may not live up to its cult classic 1990 predecessor but it's at least worth a watch for Anne Hathaway's clearly-having-the-time-of-her-life performance.

Is the witches 2020 a good movie?

November 18, 2020 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review… The Witches leans more maudlin than macabre, with only a wild performance from [Anne] Hathaway making it remotely interesting. It's good fun...and it has the strength of its convictions.

How scary is witches 2020?

The Witches ( 2020 ) is nowhere near as scary as the 1990 version, but it still brings creepy vibes and a great story.

What age is the new witches film for?

The Witches is a dark comedy based on the children's book of the same name. Although the movie might be funny for older children, younger children might be very scared by it. Therefore, The Witches isn't suitable for children under 8 years, and we recommend parental guidance for children aged 8-10 years.

What age is witches appropriate for?

The Witches is a dark comedy based on the children's book of the same name. Although the movie might be funny for older children, younger children might be very scared by it. Therefore, The Witches isn't suitable for children under 8 years, and we recommend parental guidance for children aged 8-10 years.

Is the witches 2020 a kid movie?

The Witches 2020 is appropriate for kids 10 and older as long as they're ok with some CGI fright. Anne Hathaway's character can be over-the-top, and sometimes it's too much. The overall story is a little jacked up for children, but

What is the new witches movie on?

Octavia Spencer and Anne Hathaway star in Robert Zemeckis' new adaptation of Roald Dahl's dark fantasy, and you can watch The Witches online exclusively through the HBO Max streaming service today. 28