The Witness has a few decent things going for it. Let’s look at why it has some fans.

The Witness is by no means a complex story. Blinded by a tragic car accident which killed her brother, Lu Xiaoxing (Yang Mi) is an ex-cop who draws the attention of a murderer. Luckily for her, a young man named Linchong (Lu Han) assists her in her efforts to evade the maniac (Zhu Yawen). While the film is based largely around the suspense and the main character’s blindness, it’s also about her guilt over her brother’s death. For that reason, I’d say this movie has a fair amount of heart. Frankly, I’d have a hard time bitterly critiquing such a film. It apparently comes from a genuine place.

More Strengths than Weaknesses

Sure, some aspects of The Witness seem a little far-fetched, or even sappy, and I can’t pretend I enjoyed every second of it equally, but it’s something I could re-watch at some point. It’s a movie where, for whatever reason, the killer isn’t merely animated by a lust for killing. There is apparently some unique psychological motive beyond pure rage or sex gratification. That too is an attempt to build complexity into an otherwise straightforward story.

In that regard, The Witness reminds me almost of a more innocent age, where murderers were always attributed motives beyond merely wanting to kill. That used to be more common to murder mysteries and early horror, and it’s refreshing (even if unrealistic) to see it in modern films. Motive also gives the viewer more cause to ponder the murderer. They hopefully won’t identify with what he’s doing, but may comprehend it.

The Final Verdict

In summation, I’d say The Witness is a solid movie. It has a few tricks up its sleeve, but it doesn’t laboriously use a bunch of twists and turns. There is action, but it mostly seems natural to the plot. You may not predict exactly where it’ll go, but you’ll probably be fine with where it takes you. There are tragic moments, but there are elements of an uplifting story. It is sort of a guilt-free crime/suspense adventure.

What are your thoughts on The Witness? Let us know in the comments!

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Wade Wanio is an author.

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