The greatest thing to hit the horror genre since Scream invented irony. Made for only
$30 000, this inventive ‘documentary’ follows three student filmmakers who venture into the woods outside Burkitsville, Maryland, in search of the mythical Blair Witch, a legendary figure has an unfortunate habit of disemboweling people as she swallows their souls. After becoming horribly lost in the forest, the terror starts mounting as the trio begin finding shockingly frightening artifacts like piles of stones and suspicious looking bundles of sticks. Shivers down your spine, indeed. I could barely contain my terror as they stumbled upon an entire clearing full of frightening looking pebbles. That, along with the fact that the characters behave abysmally stupid most of the time, combine to make it a little hard to take seriously, but it does managed to sustain a creepy atmosphere, and the ending kicks more ass than a car-load of LA cops. And on the subject of abysmal stupidity, I'd like to take a few moments to thoroughly ridicule all those people we overheard in the theatre as the credits rolled who were under the impression that the movie was genuine. First off, kiddies, while no one will deny that Hollywood has sunk to new lows over the past few years (I’m still recovering from She’s All That), they tend not to release snuff films to the public. Apparently, there’s some legal issues dealing with selling footage of people dying. Secondly, documentaries tend not to have writers, which is the first credit that appears at the end of the film. Provided the audience can read, something I wasn't particularly sure of with this crowd. If you were one of those unfortunate folks at the screening and I have somehow insulted you, please allow me to apologize from the bottom of my lump of coal. It was never my intention to offend anyone, I was simply pointing out that you’re all mindless Neanderthals with less smarts than a particularly stupid turnip. But back to the movie. While it won’t shock the pants off seasoned horror veterans, it’s definitely something at least vaguely original in a genre built on formula plots, in that for once it’s not teen TV stars running around with knives killing each other.