The found footage genre worked for a reason: by including a cast composed of unknown faces, it added a depth of authenticity unseen in other films. In an era where searching for conspiracies is but a few clicks away, replicating the effects of the classic The Blair Witch Project seems impossible. What's Creepypasta for anyway?
Sadly, by the end of Blair Witch, I distinctively remember utter silence. As the credits rolled, people remained in their seats, grasping their foreheads and massaging their strained eyes.Â
This is the problem with found footage films: the constant swiveling of the camera turns what could otherwise be a decent film into something almost totally unwatchable. You'd think that with all that modern recording equipment, these characters would be able to capture videos that were less vomit-inducing. Do none of these devices have video image stabilization? Jeez.
There were parts of the film that worked, where actual terror was projected to the audience. You would hear noises of something big trudging along the forest and glimpse a shadow out of the corner of your eye - something overlooked by the cast but you as a viewer could see.Â
Another fear-inducing tactic was the inclusion of subtle projections which gave the illusion that the characters were being watched. The last embers of a campfire or the arrangement of the web camera gave off a feeling that there was a pair of glowing eyes staring right at you.
Reflecting on the film afterwards was like a punch to the gut. Blair Witch was supposed to serve as a sequel to the original 1999 film and yet is exactly like the first: with a plot involving a group of friends who decide to film a documentary about the happenings in Black Hills forest, Maryland and things suddenly going awry.
Unlike the first film, Blair Witch adds nothing new to the genre. It gives off some effective scares in a few scenes, but the rest of it should be watched with eyes closed to avoid nausea and projectile vomiting.Â