"The Last Witch Hunter" stars Vin Diesel, Elijah Wood, Rose Leslie, and Michael Caine. Released on October 23, 2015, the film has a witch hunter, who is cursed with immortality, battling an evil witch queen in modern day New York.
The film is directed by Breck Eisner, who also directed Thoughtcrimes, Sahara, and the 2010 remake of The Crazies. Diesel has been a success with well-known franchises such as Riddick and The Fast and the Furious. Now he's going from racing cars to hunting witches with this film, hoping it will begin a new franchise for him. In fact, before the film's release, there has already been talks of a sequel. The question is, is this film worth getting a franchise?
The cast delivered some decent performances. Diesel takes the helm as Kaulder, a witch hunter who is cursed with immortality by the evil witch queen and is now working for the Axe and Cross to hunt down witches in modern day New York City. I thought he did a nice job portraying the character, although at some points it's hard for me to understand what he's saying when he's "mumbling" (No offense to Diesel). Michael Caine was once again enjoyable as Father Dolan. I just wish he had more screen time. He's such a really good actor. The film's visual effects were very impressive considering the fact that it had a $90 million budget. The action sequences were good, but sometimes it's hard to tell what's going on in terms of the editing and the dark lighting. I can understand that the lighting is used to fit the tone of the film, but when people watch it at home and the sun rays hit their television screen, it will make them extremely hard to watch what the characters are doing in a dark place. Trust me, I've been there.
One of the problems I had with this film is that there's not enough depth in the main character. I would like it better if they show more of Kaulder's struggles of being cursed with immortality. That way, the audience will care more about the character. The pacing is mostly consistent with its running time and the film's screenplay was pretty good, but not as strong as it wanted it to be. There were also some sequences that may be frightening for small children, such as witches attacking the main characters.
Overall, "The Last Witch Hunter" offers a nice performance from Diesel and its entertaining visual effects and storyline, but in terms of its screenplay and its heavily-edited action sequences, the film slowly goes from being 'the hunter' to 'the hunted'. It will surely entertain fans of Vin Diesel and generic fantasy films in general, but it will be hard to impress those outside of its audience. It's not as terrible or boring as most critics say it was, but it's not as great as it wanted it to be, especially when Diesel is involved in it.