Monday, January 1, 2018

Movie #442: The Last Witch Hunter

The Last Witch Hunter is a fantasy/action film starring Vin Diesel, Michael Caine, Elijah Wood, Rose Marie, and Julie Engelbrecht. It's apparently the adventures of Vin's D&D character put to film, and lordy, it shows.

Kaulder (Diesel) is a witch hunter in old-timey Europe who gets cursed with immortality while slaying the Witch Queen (Engelbrecht). Ignoring the fact that "immortality" is a lousy way to curse someone, he spends the next several centuries working with a faction within the Church, hunting down and killing, then incarcerating witches. He always has a "Dolan," a priest who acts as his chronicler and assistant. When the most recent one (Caine) retires, he meets the new one (Wood), and then Old Dolan seemingly dies, murdered by witches.

Here in the modern era, though, witches and witch-hunters have a truce, so Kaulder is hunting down rogue witches who are trying to bring back the Witch Queen. He meets a young witch named Chloe (Marie) who helps him remember the truth - the Witch Queen's heart still beats, which is what makes him immortal. And then Young Dolan betrays him and a new plague nearly gets unleashed but they kill the Witch Queen, mostly, but keep her heart around so that Kaulder remains immortal because, as Chloe tells him, there are worse things waiting in the shadows than the Witch Queen.

I cannot imagine how you'd begin to enjoy this movie if you were a gamer. Well, I mean, I guess folks liked Constantine and Blade, so maybe they'd dig this, too, though it's not as good as those two. I do enjoy that Kaulder seems to be enjoying his long life and he is obviously hurt by the loss of his family, but he's not a brooding jackass like Blade because of it. Likewise, the banter between Kaulder and Young Dolan and Kaulder and Chloe is fun, though there's not really much chemistry between Diesel and Caine.

It's a fun movie and it'd be interesting as a setting for Dresden or Witch or something, and the witches use a nice variety of magic. And hey, I can't say that if I had Diesel's money and connections, I wouldn't make a movie about one of my characters.

My Grade: C
Rewatch value: Medium, I think

Next up: Mr. & Mrs. Smith