Elaine Parker (Samantha Robinson) only became a witch after being abandoned by her late husband. An incurable romantic with fairy princess fantasies, the gorgeous widow still harbors hopes of finding Mr. Right.
With that goal in mind, she relocates to a quiet town in Northern California where she conveniently rents an already Goth-themed apartment in an imposing mansion on a hill. There, she makes fast friends with her laid-back landlady, Trish (Laura Waddell), while setting a trap for a string of unsuspecting suitors via a combination of spells and love potions..
Her first mark is Wayne Peters (Jeffrey Vincent Parise), a very gullible professor she picks up in a park. She seduces the stranger with the help of a drink spiked with hallucinogenic herbs. However, Wayne is not long for the world once the two have consummated the relationship.
After burying the corpse in her backyard, it’s on to the next conquest for Elaine, who sets her sights on everyone from Trish’s husband, Richard (Robert Seeley), to Griff (Gian Keys), the police Sergeant investigating Wayne’s disappearance. Thus unfolds The Love Witch, a campy horror comedy written, produced and directed by Anna Biller (Viva). The movie marks her sophomore offering, and stars Samantha Robinson in the title role.
The visually-captivating adventure is a rarity nowadays in that it was shot on 35 mm film. And it is also a highly-stylized throwback in the sense that it is an unapologetic homage to the trashy sexploitation flicks of the Sixties and Seventies.
So, don’t expect to invest emotionally in this cornball adventure at all, particularly given how the heroine delivers virtually every one of her lines in a halfhearted, tongue-in-cheek tone. Ultimately, this period piece harks back less to a cultural era than to a bygone genre of moviemaking.
A light as a feather, feminist fantasy where flawed males meet their match during creative displays of eroticized violence.
Very Good (2.5 stars)
Running time: 120 minutes
Distributor: Oscilloscope Laboratories
DVD Extras: Feature-length audio commentary with director Anna Biller, cinematographer M. David Mullen, actor Samantha Robinson, and producer/actor Jared Sanford; behind-the-scenes video with Anna Biller; interview with cinematographer M. David Mullen; deleted and extended scenes; and theatrical trailers.
To see a trailer for The Love Witch, visit: https://vimeo.com/15197031
To order a copy of The Love Witch on DVD, visit: https://www.amazon.com/exec/