Jump scares have become quite common place in cinema, often taking away the ideals of genuine horror. However, there comes a film every five or so years that brings the terror and dread back into the horror genre. This year, that film is The Witch.
What is The Witch?
Known for his production design in the short film world, first-time director Robert Eggers was all the talk at last year's Sundance Film Festival with his debut film, The Witch. The film was said to be a combination of shock, disturbing elements, and a classic slow burn as opposed to the previously stated, mainstream 'jump scares.' Shortly thereafter the first trailer was released. Sticking with the IMdB synopsis, the trailer remained extremely vague on plot, while at the same time showing off a mix of disturbing and unique elements.
Watch the disturbing first trailer below:
A general sense of a foreboding atmosphere is prevalent throughout the trailer. Even within its short but sweet two minute (plus) run-time, there is already a great series of compositions and a new brand of art house style, which has become a perfect fit for such films as It Follows and The Babadook.
The soundtrack is just as terrifying!
With its February 19th release date looming ahead, and not a ton of other news, a new track from The Witch's soundtrack has been released. The track, Caleb's Seduction, was performed by the film's composer Mark Korven along with Katherine Hill, Ben Grossman and The Element Choir. The track goes perfectly in line with the mood established from the trailer. The dread is simply palpable. The dragging string section brings back memories of Jonny Greenwood's classic score to There Will be Blood, and the final operatic crescendo is filled with many Kubrickian similarities.
If the sound track and first trailer weren't enough to convince you, that this will be the horror event of the year, a second trailer has been released for your viewing pleasure..
Check it out below!
All in all, The Witch appears to have a great separation from the general crop of modern horror films especially the ones rolled out during January and February. With a not-so-crowded release date, and hopefully good word of mouth, it has potential to be an early front runner for 'Horror Film of the Year'.