What You Need To Know - March 3, 2016

The Last Witch Hunter: What You Need To Know
by James
James
by James hmv London, Bio "Like the legend of the Phoenix, I've just eaten a whole packet of chocolate HobNobs..." Editor, hmv.com

The Last Witch Hunter: What You Need To Know

Vin Diesel has made a name for himself as a go-to man for leading roles in big, bombastic action blockbusters like the Fast & Furious films, xXx and Riddick. His latest starring role is no different in that regard, but for his role in The Last Witch Hunter he's battling witches from a parallel world in a fantasy epic directed by Breck Eisner.

The film arrives on DVD & Blu-ray on Monday (March 7th), here's everything you need to know...

 

Who's in it?

Vin Diesel stars as a witch hunter named Kaulder, born in the Middle Ages still alive in modern times thanks to a curse levied on him by a vengeful witch. Starring alongside him are Elijah Wood and Michael Caine, both of whom are priests who act as Kaulder's keepers. Game of Thrones and Downton Abbey star Rose Leslie also co-stars as Chloe, a young woman with the ability to access the parallel world in which the witches reside, while elsewhere there are also appearances from Ólafur Darri Ólafsson, Lotte Verbeek and Julie Engelbrecht.

 

What's the plot?

The film kicks off in the Middle Ages, where Kaulder is battling against a group of witches led by the Witch Queen (Engelbrecht), who has unleashed the Black Plague in an attempt to wipe out humanity. Having killed Kaulder's family, the Witch Queen also attempts to do the same to him, but he defeats her and, in a final act of revenge, inflicts a 'curse' on Kaulder granting him immortality.

Fast-forward 800 years or so an Kaulder is still very much alive and working for a shadowy organisation known as The Axe and Cross, whose aim is to maintain the centuries-long truce between the witches and humankind. Along with Kaulder, one of the organisation's other key members is a priest referred to as the Dolan, a role passed down through the generations and charged with acting as Kaulder's keeper, recording his actions and helping protect him from witches who attempt to break the truce.

The Last Witch Hunter
The Last Witch Hunter Breck Eisner

When the 36th Dolan (Caine) announces his intention to retire, he passes the mantle to a young priest (Wood), but later the ageing Dolan is found dead in his apartment – or so it seems. Kaulder and the new 37th Dolan discover that he is not dead at all, but under a curse cast by one of the witches. Since the curse can only be broken if the witch who cast the spell is killed, Kaulder seeks the help of Rose, hoping to use her ability to enter both worlds as a means of tracking down those responsible.

Kaulder enters the witches' world but discovers that the Witch Queen has been resurrected and is plotting another attempt to wipe out humanity, this time starting in New York. Kaulder and the young Dolan then find themselves pitched in a battle with the Witch Queen and her minions, with the stakes being nothing less than the future of humankind on Earth.

 

Does it deliver?

Eisner's film is well cast and there are some gripping action sequences, as you'd probably expect from a film with Vin Diesel in the starring role. If the fantasy genre or occultist themes aren't really your thing, this probably isn't going to change your mind, but you've enjoyed similar films like Van Helsing or Snow White and The Huntsman, you might well find that this film is right up your street. You can also find the trailer below...

 

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