Season Of The Witch

Featured In Issue 158, July/August 2011

WSR Score3.5
Basic Information on new release titles is posted as soon as titles are announced. Once reviewed, additional data is added to the database.
20th Century Fox Home Entertainment
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Thematic elements, violence and distrubing content
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Single Side, Dual Layer (BD-50)
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Dominic Sena
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Dolby Digital 5.1, DTS HD Lossless 5.1
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Season Of The Witch is a supernatural tale about a heroic Crusader, Knight Behmen (Cage) and his fellow soldier, Felson (Perlman) who must transport a woman accused of being a witch to a remote monastery. The arduous journey across perilous terrain tests their strength and courage as they discover the girl's secret and find themselves battling a terrifyingly powerful force that will determine the fate of the world. (Gary Reber)

Special features include seven deleted scenes (HD 09:56), the featurette Becoming The Demon (HD 08:29), "On A Crusade" (HD 06:07), an alternate ending (HD 09:20), the theatrical trailer, and a digital copy of the film.

The 1080p AVC picture is terrific and exhibits an impressive sense of dimensionality. Had it been produced in 3D, the depth perception would have been impressive. The production design conveys a Medieval look with elements of horror and fantasy that effectively is engaging. The color pallette is stylized, with muted and filtered hues tinged in blues and sepia. The effects are visually striking. At times fleshtones exhibit naturalness and tonal variation against natural landscapes. Contrast is well balanced, blacks are deep and solid, and shadow delineation is revealing—with impressive highlights depicted in darkened scenes. Resolution is excellent throughout, with fine detail exhibited in facial expressions, hair, clothing, landscapes, and object textures. The Wormwood Forest sequence is particularly dramatic and visually engaging. Creative lighting effects result in a picture that, at times, is surreal, which further enhances the stylization. This is an impressive visual experience that, with effective cinematic qualities, will please. (Gary Reber)

The DTS-HD Master Audio™ 5.1-channel soundtrack is a dynamic sonic treat that perfectly enhances the horror and fantasy thematic elements. Battle scenes are intense and robust sonically and are contrasted with subtle low-level atmospherics and sound effects that are impressively articulate. There are plenty of instances of bursts of sounds to underscore horrific moments. The Foley element is nicely effective to enhance the realism of battles, clashing swords, foot movements, and clothes rustlings. The soundfield is fully immersive with directionalized sound effects and a sense of height and center back sonics. The .1 LFE channel is really effective in moments of intense action, providing effective jolts of deep sub-25 Hz energy. Dialogue is generally integrated spatially, but at times ADR sounds "produced." The orchestral and choral music score is impressively expansive, with a wide and deep soundstage that extends deep into the surrounds for effective envelopment. This is an exciting holosonic® soundtrack that perfectly supports the supernatural qualities of the storytelling. (Gary Reber)