Sunday, 14 May 2017

"The Blair Witch Project" review

"The Blair Witch Project", a picture of young directors Daniel Myrick and  Eduardo Sanchez, has a unique genre called pseudo-documentary. For many viewers "The Blair Witch Project" is one of a top ten horror movie and it is not surprising because this picture looks very realistic: actors' play, shooting technique, atmosphere - all this makes the audience believe in events that happened near Burkittsville.
Three students from the film department - two guys and one girl, who is the leader of their team - arrive in Maryland’s woods to find out more about Blair Witch, about strange cases of disappearance of people, mostly children for two centuries, which happened after the accusation of witchcraft by one of the local women. Students are filming everything that is happening to them while wandering around - their endless disputes, quarrels, arguments, emotions, fears of darkness and uncertainty.
"The Blair Witch Project" awakens in the audience their primitive fear that is living inside many of us, fear of being lost, fear that even the bravest modern youth with a whole set of gadgets cannot overcome.
Figure 1. Two main protagonists: Joshua and Michael(2016)

"The main burden of the film is to bring the audience a virtual experience of being lost in the woods, of world where localisation has become impossible. The Blair Witch Project conceives of such loss in terms of horror. Evil is nothing but the loss of localisation". (Kelly Oliver, Steve Edwin, 2002)
The ending of the film is satisfying because we did not find out who the Blair witch was, we could not even see her, just like our students. The mystery remained a mystery, not trivialised.
Shooting technique adds a great feel of reality to this picture: hand cameras, natural lighting, the sound was recorded together with the image. Actors played a very large and complex role in the film because they were not only actors but also operators. However, since they were the only source of shooting, students never stopped doing that, in every terrible and extreme situation they keep on filming. Sometimes this fact caused some irritation.
Figure 2. Acting and filming at the same time(2016)

"The protagonists all agreed to have their characters use their real names and filmed much of the footage themselves over an eight-day period. This meant that when they died on screen, in the minds of many, they also died in real life too". (Heather Saul, 2016) 
According to Sergey Kudryavcev (2008), "thanks to the powerfully promoted advertising campaign, the film has its own mythology, legends, speculation, rumours ". There is a suggestion that witch’s curse not only affected minds of project participants but also affected minds of viewers of this picture. This film made all its audience and future viewers learn more details about the Blair Witch and these mysterious and rather realistic events.
Figure 3. This illustration shows all the buzz around Blair Witch(2016)

"The Blair Witch Project", is intentionally disguised for a documentary, which for an hour and a half completely confuses our reality and fiction.

1. Oliver, K., Edwin, S. (2002) Between the Psyche and the Social: Psychoanalytic Social Theory. Lanham,Maryland: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers. 
2. Saul, H. (2016) Blair Witch Project star: Life became a living nightmare after the film that made everyone believe she was dead. At: (Accessed on 13 May 2017) 
3. Kudryavcev, S.(2008) Рецензия на фильм " Ведьма из Блэр", Книга Кинорецензий "3500", Том 2[In Russian] Review of the film "The Blair Witch Project", Book of film reviews "3500", Volume 2. Translated by Anastasija Strelcova

1. Figure 1. (2016)[Film Still], accessed on 13 May 2017.
2. Figure 2.(2016)[Film Still], accessed on 13 May 2017.
3. Figure 3.(2016)[Illustration], accessed on 13 May 2017.

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