THE CRAFT (1996) 

Robin Tunney
Fairuza Balk
Neve Campbell
Rachel True
Christine Taylor
Skeet Ulrich
Assumpta Serna
Cliff De Young
Breckin Meyer

Andrew Fleming



Time: 101 mins.
Rating: R
Genre: Supernatural/High School

SYNOPSIS: Four girls at a Los Angeles Catholic school form a coven of witches that cast spells on their classmates and each other. Their new powers overwhelm them, leading to an internal power struggle.

BOTTOM LINE: THE CRAFT is one of those films that's strangely compelling even though you're not at all surprised at what occurs. It has it's scary and creepy moments, but it didn't compel me to leave a light on when I was retiring for the evening. My guess at why it wove such a spell over me is the inherent interest most everyone has in magic. You may disagree, but ever since "Bewitched" I wish could clean my house with the twinkle of my nose.

This is a darker tale about three high school outcasts who discover they have a talent for witchcraft and try to convince the new girl, played by Robin Tunney, to join their little group. She's initially thrilled to finally have friends who accept her, but their "fun" has a real evil streak she not's exactly down with. She spends the final third of the film trying to stop their rampage, while coming to terms with her own powers.

It's not exactly a deep film or very well written, but it is entertaining enough if you like films with a supernatural bent. Campbell, pre-SCREAM, is clearly the biggest draw here and does a good job as the physically and mentally scarred Bonnie who uses her magic to be beautiful again...only to turn ugly on the inside. Who would have guessed? Tunney and Balk play to their respective strengths, wide-eyed innocent and sinister bitch. A case of good acting and decent special effects making a mediocre script watchable.

Driver: "Watch out for the weirdos, girls."
Nancy: We are the weirdos, mister."

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