If you came to this article expecting me to be negative about this movie than you came to the wrong place. I love the original The Craft. It is one of those movies that I have watched multiple times and I even own a sweatshirt and Funkos, which were a very sweet gift from my wife. When I heard their would be a sequel I was skeptical. I had no idea how this would work. If it truly was a sequel how would the original cast be involved, if they would be at all, and if it was a reboot why did they think that would sell? Admittedly reboots and remakes are sort of the norm now and I thought I should give this a fair shake. On Halloween we curled up and did a Craft double feature and I was anything but disappointed.
I will say that I am treating this movie as almost independent of the original, yes I will get to the tie in moment, but this movie didn’t feel like the original. While yes they are about a group of witches seeking a fourth and the fourth being remarkably powerful, the movies don’t have the same tone. Even with Blumhouse behind Legacy the movie feels more like a coming of age with a magical edge, a bit like Vampire Academy. The witches in this are more socially conscious and beyond that they don’t have the goth edge that the former coven did. This actually adds to their more sort of white witch vibe. Yes, they do cast a spell on Timmy, but the spell itself is not malicious and they do ultimately realize that what they did was not appropriate. When Lily casts what I will call a small compulsion spell it doe work, but the other members of the coven are immediately upset with her. Unlike in the original magic that does anything against other that may cause someone who does not deserve it harm is immediately a concern.
Beyond the witches not being as interested in summoning Manon and instead on bonding through magic, this movie has some solid representation. The first that we learn about is Lourdes, played by transgender actress Zoey Luna. When the other girls complain of period cramps and that time of the month she mentions she doesn’t experience that to Lily and the rest of the group discusses this and takes in the fact that making a broad mention of women all having periods and caring babies is exclusive. Lourdes goes on to say roughly trans girls make their own magic. Beyond one of the coven being transgender, we learn that another character also is into both men and women. Now this element of representation does fall into the bury your gays trope, which annoys me tremendously, but I still want to give it to the actor and the writers for including this character. Timmy, played by Nicholas Galitzine, is established as a possible love interest for Lily and remains that until we learn of his death. During a game of two truths and a lie he reveals that he and Lily’s eldest sort of step brother. He then cries and reveals that he is interested in men and women, but that there doesn’t seem to be a place for him in society because when someone learns a man has slept with another man they assume he is gay and don’t allow him the freedom to identify in any other way. Timmy dies and Lily is blamed by the other members of the coven, they think her spell may have interacted poorly with the original spell, and they bind not only her powers, but their own.
Timmy’s death we learn is tied to the fact that Adam, Lily’s almost step father, learned about what happened with his son and Timmy and felt he needed to get rid of Timmy. The plot is used to examine toxic masculinity and how this focus on acting like a “typical male” can lead to harmful behaviors, both in the physical and psychological sense. The coven then fights Adam for what he has done and to keep him from taking Lily’s powers from her by force. I really enjoyed all of the members of the coven, Tabby and Frankie are great and Frankie is the one who really holds the coven accountable after the death of Timmy. Lily is a solid protagonist and as the focus her lineage is what adds power to the coven. This point is what led to the most debate between Krista and I. While Lily has a Sarah like nature about her, I kept insisting the big reveal was going to be that Nancy was her mom. When that was actually the case we realized this worked out timeline wise as Nancy could have been pregnant at the end of the original movie. I also thought she seemed more likely to name her child Lilith. This movie is definitely not like the original Craft, but I would say it acts as a great coming of age film and could even be watched by much younger audiences than I would recommend for the original. If you are looking for something that pays homage in a new way to The Craft I would recommend this movie.