A family of puritans gets cast off by their colony. They found a seemingly perfect new homestead next to some truly creepy woods. The Witch is everything that happens after. The actual horror elements are much lighter than one might expect, which makes sense given that much of the movie is at least reportedly based on diary entries and court records from the time. It’s also a much more quiet movie than most of the movies on my list have been. I’m still not entirely sure if I liked it or not. I may have to watch it again just to figure out. I’m not a huge fan of the way accusations of witchcraft have been used to keep women down throughout the histories of various and sundry countries (except here, because all Finns are witches). Usually, I’m not a huge fan of anything that marks those accusations and everything that followed as justified. But as a piece representing the fears those people had, this movie really worked for me. Despite a lot of the things, the film seems to get right (I’m not an expert on history, and even less so of that time period in the area), there are still a few anachronisms here and there. One that particularly bothered me was the apples. The characters mention apples as something to crave eating several times in the story but apples used for eating were still a couple of centuries away.
All in all, this was a strange one, wholly unexpected. Although I have to say, the very ending was kind of glorious.
Slightly spoilery content warnings: the movie assumes that witches are real and have had communion with the devil and it follows that there’s a lot of religious imagery and a fair amount of (mostly) female nudity, mostly out of focus or ways away. There’s also a scene of implied sexual violence which happens off-camera.