The Last Witch Hunter, Blu-ray (2016)

A new world of witches and black magic, and a more versatile Vin Diesel than in his previous movies.

The Last Witch Hunter, Blu-ray (2016)

Cast: Vin Diesel, Michael Cain, Elijah Wood, Rose Leslie, Ólafur Darri Ólafsson, Julie Engelbrecht
Director: Breck Eisner
Studio: Lionsgate/Summit (2/2/16) (2 discs: DVD & Blu-ray)
Video: 2.40:2 for 16:9 screens, 1080p HD color
Audio: English DTS:X, English DTS Digital Surround, SpanishDTS-HD MA 5.1 Surround, English descriptive audio, English DTS Headphone: X (Dolby Digital English 5.1 and 2.0 on DVD, also Spanish DD 5.1 & English descriptive audio)
Extras: Commentary track, “Crafting the Magic” featurette, Two animations, “The Last Witch Hunter sizzle reel, Deleted scenes
Length: 112 min.
Rating: ****

It might be best to view the extras first. The two short animated films explain about the race of bad and good witches who were here before humans came. They supposedly unleashed the Plague on the world, and the more vicious of the supernatural creatures still live amongst us. Special witch hunters have battled their enemies around the world for centuries. Kaulder (Diesel) managed to supposedly slay the witch queen and decimate her followers centuries ago, and he is now 800 years old. A whole new original fantasy background for this film had to be created.

Kaulder is the only one of his kind left, and he has hunted down bad witches for centuries while yearning for his long-ago loved ones. He is helped by a Dolan, played as a priest by Michael Cain. A new Dolan evidently comes onto the scene (Elijah Wood), but is found to be not trust-worthy. One of the baddies unfortunately preserved the heart of the Queen Witch, which allows her to be resurrected and to have an epic battle with Kaulder to end the film. Kaulder is about to finally stab the witch’s heart after destroying her, but decides at the last minute to go off with a good sexy young witch who has saved his life and is trust-worthy. Some great CGI magical effects, and nice to see Michael Cain (although he was evidently more impressed by the script – which brought him out of retirement – then we were).

—John Sunier

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