* * C
The Last Witch Hunter, which stars Vin “Riddick” Diesel as Kaulder in the eponymous role, was surprisingly good, considering my rock bottom expectations. When his trusted side kick, the 36th Dolan (Michael “Alfred” Caine) is cursed by a powerful warlock, Kaulder takes on a new Dolan (Elijah “Frodo” Wood) and makes an unlikely alliance with a witch (Rose “Ygritte” Leslie) to go after his enemy.
The story is imaginative, creating a world where magic hides just beneath the mundane, like the wizarding world of Harry Potter or the secret world of the Nephilim in the City of Bones. Kaulder is reminiscent of Blade or Van Helsing, a hero who guards humanity from the evils of the hidden realm. Caine and Wood turn in good performances, with Diesel and Leslie performing solidly, and having reasonable romantic chemistry.
The effects are good, and there is a nice mixture of action with magic and illusion. I won’t reveal the plot any more than I have. Suffice it to say it attempts to be epic, and there is a twist that wasn’t entirely obvious before it happened. If you like fantasy, I recommend this film as a fun light entertainment. I wouldn’t put it on a must see list, but it deserves its 6.0 rating on IMDB.