William (Ralph Ineson) has been forced to relocate his wife, Katherine (Kate Dickie) and their children after exile from the Puritan plantation they called home due. Everyone finds that truly tested after Samuel is snatched, and grief and spite reverberate through the wooden farmhouse. As strange and troubling events escalate, eldest daughter Thomasin (Anya Taylor-Joy) suffers the brunt of her mother's wrath, while Caleb (Harvey Scrimshaw) sees the first temptation of the flesh in his sister's blossoming bosom and the two youngest children share an ominous affinity with a ram named Black Philip. There are lulls in the narrative but never breaks and as the spectre in the woods - and a discomforting hare - tighten the noose, accusations and confessions flow as thickly as blood. That a character embracing sin provides the only moment of respite - nay, ecstasy - is indication enough at what drives the intestine-twisting tension of The Witch.
Ben Nicholson | @BRNicholson