MOVIE REVIEW-Cage glory: <i>Season of the Witch</i> over the top


I lost track of the sieges and battles. Season of the Witch opens with a series of helpfully labeled sequences in which desert battles are fought, sites are sacked, buttresses stormed, redoubts doubted, enclosures enclosed, and so on. I didn't take notes, but an example might be, "The Siege of Synecdoche, April 1, 1239 A.D." 

Anyway, there's a slew of them. Crusaders in armor do battle with fierce desert tribesmen under the blazing sun. Heads are lopped off and roll across the plain. Horses whinny, women scream, children flee, warriors are disemboweled, limbs severed, dogs would bark if there were dogs. The horror!

After about a dozen years of this, we pause for a discussion between the two hero Crusaders, Behmen (Nicolas Cage) and Felson (Ron Perlman). Yes, Cage and Perlman, so you suspect Season of the Witch will not be an exercise in understatement. "The killing of the women and children must stop!" they agree. Having arrived at this conclusion after 12 years of rape and pillage, they do not qualify as quick studies. The comrades abandon the armies of the Crusades, hit the road and happen across a town somewhere in the vastness.

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