Friday, August 12, 2016

The Wytch Files Ep. 12: The Craft: Witch Wars!

5.0 / 7.0

Witchcraft, teenage hormones, high school bullies
and rivalries, magical revenge and witch battles! Yes, folks, this episode is all about the 1996 cult movie favorite The Craft!  We explore the movie and some of the behind the scenes information to bring you what we feel is a well-rounded critique of the film.

The film does a good job of incorporating Wiccan elements into the story including ritual inspired by both Gardnerian and Alexandrian Wicca.  The Sacred Texts website has a copy of The Gardnerian Book of Shadows by Gerald Gardner which is a MUST read for anyone interested in Gardnerian Wicca.  Likewise, if Alexandrian Wicca is more your taste, check out A Witches' Bible by Stewart and Janet Farrar.  In addition, Gerald Gardner's books The Meaning of WitchcraftWitchcraft Today and High Magic's Aid are still in print today and available for purchase.  If you are looking for a beginner's book on Wicca, Thea Sabin's book "Wicca for Beginners" is a good book to start with.

The film also makes excellent use of books as ritual tools and educational guides for the girls.  For instance, a page from The Book of Ceremonial Magic by Arthur Edward Waite makes an appearance in the film during one of the occult shop scenes.  See if you can spot the page.

The three-fold law and the Wiccan Rede are very important thematic elements in the story.  Jason Mankey wrote a great post at Patheos about The Wiccan Rede. You can also read Lady Gwen Thompson's Green Egg article titled "Wiccan Potpourri" that contains the Rede of the Wiccae here.  Wren Walker from The Witches' Voice discuses The Threefold Law in her post here.

Hexing and magical intimidation occur quite a bit in the film as the girls get magical revenge on their tormentors and eventually turn on each other.  The characters also use oath-breaking as justification for magical attacks.  Storm Faerywolf's blog post "Beyond Toil and Trouble" addresses the ethics of hexing in modern witchcraft.  Chris Orapello's blog post Witchcraft, Initiation and Sovereignty addresses the topic of initiations, oaths and personal sovereignty in witchraft.

Despite all the magical attacks that occur in the latter half of the film, the first half of the film is filled with some great scenes of sisterly and magical bonding between the girls. They play a children's levitation game with morbid origins, they have a memorable summer ritual bless with butterflies, and Sarah performs a healing spell on Bonnie that greatly resembles the Japanese healing practice of Reiki.  The International Association of Reiki Professionals is a great resource for information on Reiki.  For circular breathing techniques, check out our video playlist below.  And to help save the monarchs, visit

Wren Walker provides her review of The Craft here at The Witches' Voice - a free, proactive online educational network providing news, information services and resources for and about Pagans, Heathens, Witches and Wiccans. They have given us decades of priceless community resources and we thank them for their great work! Lastly, this cheeky rundown on young teen viewer's reactions is worth a laugh.

A sequel of The Craft is scheduled for release in 2018 with female director Leigh Janiak at the helm. For more information and reactions to the planned sequel, check out press for it herehere and here.

The Wytch Files is produced by Mallon Khan.
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