Jack Barry’s review published on Letterboxd:
A film that went down just right for this mellow Halloween night. Witches are Evil, Y'all. They'll eat the children.
I Really Dig how this one is handled. Robert Eggers, the film-maker, on his first outing here I think, just hits a bullseye with the tone. Creepy, Naturalistic, Dreadfully Slow-Burn Intense.
There's something so sinister about the piousness of pioneer-Christianity coming up against the power of superstition and the suspicion of witchery.
As with most on-screen witch-trial situations, there's a study of hysteria here. Yet also it can not be denied, here in these woods, there's some real bad shit goin' down.
The piling on of dread as the losses come to pass for the family... This Movie Is Wicked.
The seeming historical accuracy, and the monochromatic visuals shot through with the look of natural light, come together to make the whole thing feel so real, like a really well-done period-piece will do. And here the way it does that, in a simple naturalistic style, takes us right back to this time and place out in the Virginia woods, well...
The well-established reality of it all makes the whole turn-of-events scary as hell. I feel like this really happened.
And that's just what an old folk-tale is supposed to do.
Happy Halloween, Y'all.
*** Oh yeah, P.S. - I know it seems kinda rude to mention, but they shoulda just gotten rid of the black goat. Darwin-Awards, Pioneer-Edition.