The action/horror sub-genre is a silly little beast. Most films in any genre require some level of disbelief, but action/horror insists on a highly saturated dose. It is not a genre well known for its accolades. Nor is it famous for blockbuster-ing the box office. But for horror fans, it is the ultimate guilty pleasure format. It's like the Michael Bay of the horror genre.
The Last Witch Hunter falls smack dab in the middle of this category. Vin Diesel aside, this movie is like the Fast and Furious horror equivalent. No substance, lots of action, and a handful of horror elements sprinkled in. However, the only thing LWH ended up disappointing was my incredibly low expectations, as it turned out to not only be bearable but enjoyable.
Don't get me wrong, this film had few redeemable plot qualities and lacked depth from a cast that was surprisingly noteworthy going in. Yet, it seemed that behind the scenes it was self-aware of its destiny to follow in the footsteps of the Underworld sequels, Blade trilogy, and Resident Evil franchise. So it waded in the shallow end of its world, immersing you enough in the material to keep you interested, but silently acknowledging that going much deeper would make a mockery of itself.
So instead what we get is a fun little action/horror flick. Noteworthy of popcorn, a couple of chuckle-inducing Diesel yarns, and some decent eye candy for the horror enthusiast. Considering the crap-bag I was expecting it to be, the formidable production value is worth noting. It never stunk up the room and rarely left me rolling my eyes. It moved at a proper pace and developed an imaginative world from which to operate (but, essentially, Blade with witches). It wasn't as good as some of its aforementioned counterparts, but I have to give it credit for turning out a much better product than expected. Expectations were admittedly low, but I'd rather appreciate the film for exceeding them, rather than bash it for falling short in a sub-genre innately lacking in script and story.
The modern day witch tale is nothing new. In fact, it rivaled vampires there for a time, however briefly. But I did enjoy the atmosphere and environment created from which the witches operate. The culture was fun, though as mentioned before, the film refrained from diving too deeply into the material. I recommend the movie if for no other reason than you should at the very least have a good laugh. But just maybe you might enjoy a bit of mindless fun dipped in a light coating of horror.