Witching and Bitching – Movie Review
Follow Genre: Horror-Comedy
Director: Álex de la Iglesia
Distributor: Splendid Film

Witching and Bitching – Movie Review

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Good: good film to zero your brain
Bad: empty script
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Rating: 2.0/10 (1 vote cast)

Witching and Bitching is a raw horror-comedy by the Spanish director Álex de la Iglesia, originally titled Las brujas de Zugarramurdi. The film begins with a failed robbery from where two of the crooks manage to flee by taxi and end up in Zuggaramurdi, a town by the border of France that happens to be inhabited by not only cannibalistic but above all also feminist witches.


The intense beginning and a silver-spray-painted Jesus get one’s hopes up perhaps too much at the beginning of the film. A clear sign of the director’s wit and personality is portrayed by when a series of notorious female killers are shown on the screen and Margaret Thatcher has been placed amongst them. Good one, Alex. There is an energetic and fun to watch atmosphere from the very start, with a good deal of exaggerated humour that anyone can relate to. Everyone can snicker about clichés that concern men and women, right. Sounds like a good 110 minutes of easy watching!

But not to worry, soon enough the sappy gender-joking is replaced with a fair deal of horror.


After a while, the script loses momentum yet there is some impossible-to-pinpoint driving force that carries the viewer through until the end. The characters themselves aren’t that entertaining and rather superficial, but casted actors like Hugo Silva and Carmen Maura amongst others manage to make up for this with their dedication to their role and, one cannot forget to mention, their obviously attractive physical features. There is some serious overacting going on but it is called for in this kind of film. Without it, it would most likely lose much of its flair. It’s over the top, it’s screamy, it’s hysterical. It’s Alex. The visuals and exaggerations simply belong. His followers would expect nothing less.

Nevertheless, the story stretches out and becomes a tad too chaotic towards the end – like a breeze of laziness hit the production team, translated into an overwhelming amount of computer graphics, and mediocre ones at that. Just like de la Iglesia would have realized how messy it all became towards the end, there is an attempt to round up on a calmer note just before the end credits by inserting an epilogue but it does not smoothen out what preceded. The craziness cannot be undone. But does it actually need to be?



Witching and Bitching received the Golden Raven award on the Brussels International Fantastic Film Festival 2014, as well as the Audience award. That, and especially the latter, is quite the achievement. It also scooped up eight Goya’s, which are the Spanish equivalent of the Oscars. Does the person writing this pejorative review have no taste in films whatsoever then? In my defense, the Goya’s were given for “merely” the cinematographic aspects the film entails, as well as best audio, best production supervision, best special effects etc. No kudos for the direction or script.  You will have spent the last 2 hours comfortably enjoying the moving pictures, but if you are looking for something savoury, you will have been left unfulfilled; perfect as a no-brainer to clear your mind though!

Just for the sake of the recognition it has received so far, just go ahead and make up your own mind. It won’t be a waste of your money.

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Rating: 2.0/10 (1 vote cast)
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Witching and Bitching - Movie Review, 2.0 out of 10 based on 1 rating

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