The Last Witch Hunter disappoints audiences

Ariana Eshraghi

A witch would have to cast a spell to make me watch this dull movie again. The Last Witch Hunter wasn’t original and to keep viewers from falling asleep, the entire movie relied on scenes that have nothing to do with the plot.

From the very start, it pulls you through your typical gruesome backstory and then jumps to a more modern setting. At the beginning Kaulder, who is the main character, and a few other men are on a hunt to kill the Witch Queen, a creepy woman whose goal is to demolish humanity by releasing killer bugs. While Kaulder’s group gets massacred in grisly ways, he manages to kill the Witch Queen and she curses him to immortality with her last breath.

Things pick up 800 years later when the 36th “Dolan” dies in his sleep. Dolans are people whose main purpose is to record the achievements of Kaulder as he captures or kills witches doing illegal things. It is then revealed that the Dolan was in fact murdered, and thus ensues the chase to find who killed him and why.

On the way, Kaulder encounters challenges and events that hint at this gorgeous fantasy world that could evolve into something wonderful, if not for the cliche plot. The backbone of the whole movie could be seen in practically every other sword-and-sorcery story involving your typical group of antagonists who try to reincarnate their ruler and your typical protagonists who try to stop them. Most of the scenes, the ones that actually contributed to the characters’ choices, were predictable. The ones that weren’t didn’t make sense.

From the very start, I knew what would happen. It was so predictable, I found myself muttering  what would happen before it did. The tension rose alright, but the ending sagged. You would think the main characters would learn from their mistakes and destroy the very object that caused all of this death in the first place, but Chloe, the sidekick, comes up with a ridiculous excuse — ”We still need you, Kaulder” — and because of that, they keep the evil thing, completely ignoring the fact that a) a ton of people were killed because it wasn’t destroyed the first time, so not destroying it is downright insulting and b) they are doing the exact same thing the antagonists did and dumping all of their hard work to destroy it. Either the writers decided to intentionally make the main character so obtuse as to put everyone’s life in danger right after saving them, or they wanted to set it up for a sequel and didn’t know another way to do it.

There were some vaguely interesting plot twists nested in The Last Witch Hunter, but they were still predictable. The effects were good and the animation bearable, though it seems the writers relied solely on disturbing scenes and epic but meaningless battles to catch the audience’s attention.

On a more positive note, the writers did a good job of setting up this world of theirs where witches live in secret. It holds the perfect blend of magic and the modern world. Instead of thrusting out unfathomable ideas that would make this more of a fantasy movie, they mashed in some scientific explanations  and slapped it in a regular city, mixing in some realistic elements — airplanes, iPads, and selfies — for what could be a beautiful masterpiece.
To sum it up, some things in The Last Witch Hunter are clarified but too many are open to audience interpretation and are too obscure for anything to be understood. If the storyline had strayed from other movies’ of the same genre, the ending hadn’t been so disappointing, and more of the brilliant setting had been exposed, this motion picture could have potential. As it is, The Last Witch Hunter was a mix of bland dialogue, unsatisfactory plot with a few small clever twists, and an idea that could develop into much more than what was given.