Season of the Witch
Directed by: Dominic Sena Cast: Nicolas Cage, Ron Perlman, Stephen Campbell Monroe, Claire Foy Running Time: 1 hr 35 mins Rating: PG-13 Due Out: June 28, 2011
PLOT: A group of master soldiers (Cage, Perlman) from the Crusades are assigned to transport a woman (Foy) accused of witchcraft to a sacred monastery.
WHO'S IT FOR? Fans of Nicolas Cage might be the easiest sells for this movie, as they should be aware of the cheesy potential considering his named attached. Action movie fans should be warned this isn't The Seventh Seal with swords.
There's nothing too nightmarish about Season of the Witch (in a bad movie sense, of course).
This stance feels like a fair way to start assessing this flick for two reasons: its theatrical release was delayed for almost a year, and it stars Nicolas Cage wearing another mop on his head. Usually either of these components can lead to a Cage-master disaster. Mathematically, combining them feels like a poisonous mix. Plus, when this movie finally did come out, it was on the first of January. That nearly puts it automatically to the bottom of this year's trash barrel, with The Roommate and Big Momma's: Like Father, Like Son literally pig-piling on top of it.
The movie's biggest flaw is that nothing really happens. On a very weak register, one could say that this is a journey movie, but even such events are extremely mild. It's a "journey" movie with the energy of something standing in place, doing exactly what we'd expect it to. For example, when they cross a bridge, they wear the thin rope to its final strand and ... you can guess what happens.
Even the lackluster chemistry between the usually charismatic Perlman and the totally wacky Cage is able to be peacefully shrugged off once we understand how early into the film they've given up. While we can certainly hope they'll do better next time in separate ventures, we accept it's game over in Round One when the two challenge each other to a kill count competition. This is something that all warriors do, and the additional indifferent accents of the two are basically metaphorical white flags.
If the presence of Nic Cage excites you, this movie won't knock you out (to sleep). But if you can stay awake through its dull story and toothless action scenes, it won't be an entirely abominable experience, though it's very far from a great one. And whether they reject this movie or not, Nicolas Cage will sleep at night after this movie, and so will Ron Perlman. While the same probably can't be said for the director, Dominic Sena. He will definitely be having nightmares about this one.
MOVIE SCORE: 3/10
Season of the Witch in High Definition Deleted Scenes Becoming the Demon On a Crusade Alternate Ending