TV film review: Witchville (2010), directed by Pearry Reginald Teo
When I saw this was going to be on, the title had me interested and when I saw Luke Goss was in it, went “aww, yeah!” And then I started watching it. A number of times. Just found it really hard to get into, witches aside.
From what I gather, Malachy (Luke Goss) is a prince whose father dies, leaving him in charge of the country. Together with his pals Jason (Ed Speleers) and Erik (Andrew Pleavin), he heads back to his home turf, only to find it a wasteland. “‘Ere be witches!” says a man called Kramer (Simon Thorp), who conveniently happens to be a witch hunter in possession of a book that the witches really want to get their evil mitts on. And off they go together to save the kingdom.
The coven of witches is headed by the Red Queen (Sarah Douglas). Her daughter, Jozefa (MyAnna Buring), enjoys posing with weapons as if she was a cover girl for a video game trailer, and that’s even before I mention that the armour used in the movie had me thinking of World of Warcraft … a game I’ve never actually played. From the IMDb message boards, apparently people who do play the game are of the same opinion.
I wish I could say this was a good film, but it never really grabbed my attention. The Red Queen was really camp, the Big Reveal didn’t feel like the surprise it should’ve been, more like “oh really, you don’t say”. Acting-wise, I’ve seen worse. Script-wise and special effects-wise, I’ve seen better.
The only times I really perked up were to during some of the fight scenes, because MAN, that man can MOVE! One of the things I really like about Hellboy II: The Golden Army is how wonderfully choreographed the fighting is with Prince Nuada (i.e. Luke Goss). Granted, I know nothing about martial arts, but those scenes are beautiful to behold. And here, when Malachy is fighting, I find myself looking at the movements and appreciating the grace. It’s not clunky like BBC’s Robin Hood, it’s just … very fluid and smooth and somehow pleasing on the eye. You could say the same for the scene where he’s hauled shirtless in front of the Red Queen, but that’s just a bonus, really.
Ohh yeah, the Queen’s henchmen looked like the Death Eaters in the Harry Potter films. Dark cloaks, dark masks, travelling around by smoke – red instead of black – for copyright reasons? But yeah, I guess Witchville did have some redeeming features, however small they were in a torrent of unmemorable medieval fantasy style stuff. All you really need to know is that it’s a Syfy film.
1.8 out of 5 red mists.