The Nasty dozen.
Here I go again with anther installment of Witchcraft, The Troma made franchise that spawned a dozen films. So odd, cause how come the Toxic Avenger or Class of Nuke Em High does not have a dozen films. It seems that it took them a lot of time and money to make Class of Nuke Em High volume 2, and yet we have a dozen sequels to Witchcraft?
In fairness this has a lot to do with the marketing popularity of soft-core porno, during a time when porn could not be found that easily on a little thing called the internet. It’s one of the things that gives this film franchise legs.
The first film was a straight up Horror film that rips off Rosemary’s Baby with a plot about a mother who just gave birth to a cult’s warlock. By the second film in which this warlock grows up to be a college student uninterested in being a warlock, the film added a nude scene to the equation.
And so it begins… For the Next six movies, it seemed like the films were trying to pump up the sex to the point were it looked more like stuff I use to watch on late night cable rather than a horror film. I always found it interesting as the production of the film barely changed but it looks like they put all their money into hiring girls you want to see naked. To be clear, what I mean is that if every movie cost somewhere around forty to eighty thousand dollars, in every movie the sets and visual effect cost 2 bucks while the rest of the money went to the girls (that’s fair)
Seems to be no different in the 12th movie calling itself Witchcraft. Although, this 2002 feature looks far more cheaper than most of the movies (Except maybe number 10 which also looked like it was filmed on video), it follows that same premise of Sex Sells, but I guess they needed to be cheaper with the production. there are a lot of scenes with strippers dancing, but not as many great nude scenes (none in fact) the series has become remembered for (by me, since I started watching a few mouths ago).
What I like most about the movie (Even above the naked breast) is the return of Will Spanner. Spanner was the baby born to be a Warlock in the first film. Throughout the series he would grow up to denounce his evil heritage and become a Lawyer that takes on hard to solve cases due to the mysterious supernatural element to all them that he can see because of who he was born to be. Just like in Witchcraft XI, Will is more comfortable using his natural abilities past his six sense to the occult to figure out what’s going on. It’s something that I have been wanting the series to do since about number four. He’s going as far as casting spells and the villains being more afraid of his powers rather just noticing he has them deep inside. I do understand why he did not do all this for most of the movies. In number 12, Will lost his job as a DA because the only link he can find to most of his cases is black magic, something I’m sure is hard to prove in a court of law.
What does suck is that Will Spanner is the only recurring charter to come back for number 12. A few of the other movies also consisted of Lutz and Garner, two police detectives that seem to run into Will on murder scenes , possibly because of their own weird connection to the supernatural. Lutz was a woman who, for the most part, believed in Will’s gut instant just enough to be convinced by him to look in certain places and for certain people that should not make sense. I like her character (looked like everyone did as Lutz (without Will and Garner) was the main charter in Witchcraft X), so respectable of a charter that we did not even get to see her boobs (even though she’s usually played by a well endowed woman) , until number 11.
Then there’s Garner, the comic relief of the two. He was a womanizer who tended to make a lot of dirty jokes about women (That Lutz tolerated up until number 11). He tended to be more about the facts and because of that, he’s not a fan of going after Will’s hunches, but is usually convinced by Lutz that they have nothing better.
For number 12, Will assist in a police investigation run by Gaines, a middle age man who knew Will sometime ago when he was a DA, but never knew about his black magic side. I don’t recall the character coming up in another flick, so all this must have happen off camera. If it did than I would have preferred Will to team up with Gardner for the sake of keeping up with the Franchise, which I love for the concept of The Witchcraft Saga being a strange crime drama wrapped in Horror about a Lawyer going up against the supernatural (sounds like a show that would premiere right before Law and Order: special victims unit).
Another character missing from the series in this movie is Kelly. I’m not sure how many of the movies Kelly was in as she was always a background character, Will’s significant other who for the most part is just used as another girl to place another sex scene in the movie, but for the last picture Kelly was able to get more of a background story. This time around they replaced Kelly with Cindy. Supposedly, Cindy knew Will from College and use to date. Putting my geek flag high in the sky, if I remember correctly , his lady in college (When he was known as Will Adams in order to hide out from his father’s satanic cult) was Deloris, which makes the events of this movie out of continuity.
There might be a good reason for that. Witchcraft started out as a movie by Troma, and many of it’s sequels carry the Troma label, but not all of them. Some of them (like Witchcraft 8 and 10), were not made by Troma, but have the witchcraft name and were released as if apart of the franchise (Although 8 really is not because like Halloween 3 does not evolve Micheal Myers, Eight does not evolve Will Spanner). It’s possible that the studio that made 12 did not or could not pay for the rights to use anybody but Will Spanner or just did not give a fuck about continuity, and just really wanted to use the Witchcraft banner to easily advertise the film
I would not be surprise me if the former was true. This movie is cheap. It’s soooo cheap that they could not even afford for the girls to get naked in this. All the strippers had their clothes on when dancing in the three to four strip club scenes. All the sex scenes got up to the four play but stop short of showing anything. That really sucks.
So I’m going to say that though Witchcraft XII comes close to the idea I have of The adventures of Will Spanner being a perfect Crime Drama laced with Horror, that fact that they want to make it something appropriate for basic cable over Showtime is one of many reasons it sucks.
On the number thirteen.