Roald Dahl's The Witches

Roald Dahl's The Witches ★★

The fact this ends on a terrible montage set to a cover of We Are Family by C-grade Australian pop star Samantha Jade should tell you everything you need to know...

Inspecting the talent behind this, it should be so much stronger. If del Toro (who co-wrote this, albeit a very early draft) directed this it would’ve rightly delivered on the absent gothic horror elements and if Cuarón (who’s somehow a producer) directed this it would’ve leant harder into the heartfelt family elements. Zemeckis is a guy who I somehow always give a pass to because Back to the Future and my love for it as a youngster is probably the reason why I love films to this day. I don’t know what he was trying to do with this. It’s somehow both garish and bland at the same time. The only distinctive element of his is the nostalgic ‘60s period. His increased fetishisation of CGI over this century is just odd, especially when it often ventures into the uncanny valley.

Anne Hathaway gets to go full theatre kid in a crazy performance which will probably garner her a Razzie nomination at least (even though those don’t care). You can tell she’s having fun despite how bizarrely over the top she’s going. Octavia Spencer is Octavia Spencer and Chris Rock’s narration is truly awful.

The fact that someone was stabbed on set is far more interesting than anything else in this.