Seventh Son 3D

In the face of evil, claim your destiny.

Fantasy film following a mystical knight (Jeff Bridges) and his 14-year-old apprentice (Ben Barnes) as they prepare to battle the malevolently powerful witch Mother Malkin (Julianne Moore). Based on the first book in the Wardstone Chronicles series of young adult novels by Joseph Delaney.

In an ancient time, an evil is about to be unleashed that will reignite the war between the forces of the supernatural and humankind. Master Gregory (Bridges) imprisoned Mother Malkin centuries earlier, now she has escaped and is seeking vengeance. Summoning followers of every incarnation, the witch is preparing to unleash her terrible wrath on an unsuspecting world. Gregory, about to come face to face with the evil he feared would return, trains his new apprentice to fight the dark magic.

Trailers

Directed by

Written by

Adventure, Fantasy, 3D

102mins

Rating: M Violence and offensive language

UK, USA

Watching Seventh Son is a bit like reading instructions that have been translated into English by someone who doesn’t actually speak the language. Sadly the creative team behind this star-studded effort just don’t speak fantasy.

Sure, Seventh Son has all the requisite parts: witch hunters, witches, a naive apprentice, dragons, simple townsfolk and, err, guys with axes for arms. And it puts them together in the right order. But somehow it never quite comes together and just leaves us with an unpleasing mess that you can’t help think would be more use if we scrapped it for parts.

Ben Barnes plays Tom Ward, the seventh son of a seventh son – which like many aspects of this film is a concept borrowed from magical lore that is misused and ill-explored. He’s apprenticed to Jeff Bridges’ witch hunter Master Gregory, who we know is deep, complex and capable of profound actions because he puts on a funny voice.

Together they must defeat uber-witch Mother Malkin (Julianne Moore), who is gathering all of the magical beings of the land together to destroy everything, essentially because she is pissed at her ex-boyfriend. Heaven forbid we let a powerful woman have a motivation that was based outside her ovaries.

A series of notionally cavalier confrontations between witches and witch-hunters ensue, escalating in size until the inevitable big battle, yet our interest in the outcome declines in inverse proportion.

Unfortunately there is no actual magic in this magical tale and this flat pack film-by-numbers is just that: flat.

Variety (USA)

press

Amounts to nothing short of a creative miscarriage.

Hollywood Reporter

press

Certainly watchable but far from memorable...

Dissolve (USA)

press

Overstuffed, but swift and unpretentious...

AV Club (USA)

press

Brisk and unpretentious, though the fact that these two qualities can be considered remarkable probably says more about the state of modern genre filmmaking than it does about the movie itself.

Entertainment Weekly

press

Ends up being a movie about walking, interrupted occasionally by a battle against a mythological monster.

Los Angeles Times

press

I know it's early, but "Seventh Son" may actually be the worst movie of the year. It will most certainly be a contender.