1 out of 10
Release Date: 16th February 2015 (DVD Premiere)
Director: John Mackie
Cast: Dexter Fletcher, Magda Rodriguez, Rachel Summers, Fiona Maeve O’Brien, Holly Mackie, Cloe Mackie, Madeleine Rose Witney, Maya Charlerly, Billy Red Mackie, Kazim Benson, Jodie Benson, Howard Lee with Tony O’ Callaghan and Mark Cooper Harris
Writer: Jayney Mackie
Trailer: THE COVEN
TO BE PROOFREAD: Unscary and as flat as Norfolk, I doubt many of the cast have even so much as walked past a drama school. So wooden are the performances by most of the young leads that viewers may get them confused with the trees in haunted woods where most of The Coven is set. Set in a real life ‘haunted’ spot in Highgate, London the only thing scary about this flick is how seasoned actor and up and coming film director Dexter Fletcher (LAYER CAKE) got involved. He must really need money to make his next film about Eddie The Eagle or the filmmakers caught him doing something in the woods on camera and blackmailed him!
Strangely enough the bad and indifferent performances by the largely female cast borderline on realistic. Now, this may sound like a contradiction but bear with me, when I was training to be a school teacher I was met with the same type of slow witted, heavy eye-lid lead, dopeyness on a day to day basis and I can confirm that this is how teenagers of today act, except these girls couldn’t act and were betraying their real life personalities. You can imagine how unenthusiastic they were to be stuck in some cold and spooky woods in the middle of autumn with only some creepy filmmakers for company. The only other film with a comparably bored cast was The Dead Inside – a recent zombie horror set outside Milton Keynes!
The plot is nonsensical, every single adult seems to be an encyclopedia on devil worship. One character even has a professor on her couch to tell her about the ins and outs of occultism and how spooky her neighbourhood is. Dexter Fletcher plays a teacher who gets sent out of his lesson by a sexy ghost teacher who may be an embodiment of Lucifer. A mysterious motorbiker called Uri Clef stalks our girls and turns them into a holly bush whilst chalk letters move around on a black board in their classroom. Tony O’ Callaghan from The Bill turns up to deliver more exposition when Dexter Fletcher’s sidelined teacher starts talking about asking the sexy ghost out only to be put off topic by her foreign surname. That’s another thing, this film is racist. All the black characters are dim and treated thus. A racist librarian (MARK COOPER HARRIS – ABDUCTED) won’t even give her a photocopy of a book and even closes the library early so that she can’t stay and read it. Her white friends tell her that she’s not one of them and that’s just for starts. She’s so thick she runs to the woods to help her imperilled friends in her pyjamas, at Hallowe’en! There’s more but Joe Pesci II is likely to happen upon this strain of racism that runs deep throughout The Coven albeit intentional.
Halfway through two lads are added to the menu but to little effect except to wonder quite how many of our youth are speaking in this crazy ‘made-up’ accent that blends East End Cockney, Nottingham and Jamaican, and how daft it sounds. The boys are just as crap at acting, further banjaxxed by a terrible script and plot. Weirdly enough it’s not the worst horror film that’s turned up this year and that is very,very dim praise indeed.
The ending of the film contains a caveat that this is all based on fact and that real witches tried to stop them from making the film. I wish they succeeded but this film was hexed the minute the writer figured out how to unscrew the lid from her biro.
1 out of 10 – Pure special bus.
Second review below by the sinister fiend Matt ‘He knows for sure Witches don’t wear underwear’ Usher aka Joe Pesci II
WHAT HAVE I SEEN THAT ACTOR IN BEFORE?
- Dexter Fletcher: Eddie The Eagle (dir), Age of Kill, Muppets Most Wanted, Sunshine On Leith (dir), Cockneys Vs. Zombies, St. George’s Day, Wild Bill (2012) (dir),The Three Musketeers (2011), Everywhere + Nowhere, Kick Ass, Jack Falls, Dead Cert, Baseline, In Your Dreams, Stardust, Below, Layer Cake, Doom, Lock Stock & Two Smoking Barrels, The Rachel Papers, The Raggedy Rawney, Caravaggio, Press Gang (TV)
- Magda Rodriguez: SNUB!
- Holly Mackie: St Trinians 2, St Trinians (2007)
- Cloe Mackie: St Trinians 2, St Trinians (2007)
- Howard Lee: Coronation Street (TV), Lagar
- Tony O’ Callaghan: Eastenders (TV), The Bill (TV)
- Mark Cooper Harris: Bonded By Blood 2, The Crypt, Abducted, The Hooligan Wars, GBH, Offender, The Holding, Outside Bet