This is a witch focused film that follows five undergrads as they come together in an attempt to summon an ancient and powerful being. That’s the just of the story, and there are some minor side plots that sort of awkwardly come together throughout this. It’s actually not too bad in its presentation, with unique effects and a solid cast. I think in general the narrative really failed this one as it sort of just goes by, and quickly with a short run time at that.
It’s made even shorter by a very exaggerated sort of sexually driven opening sequence of credits which was honestly perplexing to watch. I liked the sort of cold open they present, and then things don’t quite go to plan following that point. The concept of needing another member was setup well, yet perhaps poorly executed.
It would have been neat to get more of a build-up between the smaller romantic line-ups, or even more of an enticing fixture in regards to gaining that extra individual. They just interact for a few seconds, and are all teamed up basically right away. There was also an attempt to add a lore aspect to this through a historical component, and that kind of worked. I also generally felt that at times the dramatic elements were over-acted.
It seemed too epic for what this was trying to be, which was an intimate tale of witches playing around with something that they don’t seemingly understand fully. To gain an extra boost of power, and I would have liked more reasoning from each of the individuals as to why they needed this. We know the reasoning of the main character, and a couple other individuals whereas others in the collection came across as though they were just extras. They’re supposed to be a tight group of witches, and that didn’t quite feel like the case.
The character you mostly follow is Sophie (Lizzie Gordon), who’s closely joined by the knowledgeable Beth (Margot Major). These two have the core dynamic, but there are others involved that don’t really get much of a build-up quite honestly.
There are some that fill the more typical darker aspect of the group, being some entwined witches and that does provide some suggestive content including top half nudity in a scene or two. Nothing too wild, but worth a mention I suppose. I thought the cast was again, generally solid in this one. They just didn’t have much to work with, and I particularly thought the side plots were underdeveloped.
There was a whole romantic story going on, and that didn’t get much of any focus making the latter inclusion of it slightly awkward. It was almost forced, and then forgotten about swiftly. This was shot in a very stylized way, it did look fine visually. I also thought the special effects were solid for this type or production, and used effectively.
Coven is at times an alright film, although it does have some rather weak points that drag things down and there’s not necessarily a whole lot to it. The concept of this movie was interesting, with some weak execution in regards to the narrative and where certain parts of the plot go. It opened up well despite the odd sequence that followed the cold opening.
There was a neat sort of style to it, and it did go by very quickly pacing wise. You might be wondering what exactly is happening in certain situations, or if things make entire sense and I think that’s part of the downfall of this one structure wise. I thought it had a fine cast aside from some over-acting during dramatic portions that took me out of it too much. There needed to be more of a balance for fun, instead of being too serious and over the top.
Coven Review at Home with Streamed Viewing
Screening Provided by October Coast Publicity