The Salem witch trials of 1692 are brought vividly to life in this compelling adaptation of Arthur Miller's play, directed by Nicholas Hytner ("The Madness of King George"). A group of teenage girls meet in the woods at midnight for a secret love-conjuring ceremony. While the other girls attempt to cast love spells, Abigail Williams (Winona Ryder) wishes for the death of her former lover's (Daniel Day-Lewis) wife. When their ceremony is witnessed by the town minister, the girls suddenly find themselves accused of witchcraft. Soon the entire village is consumed by cries of witchcraft, and as the hysteria grows, blameless victims are torn from their homes, leading to a devastating climax.
**Commentary by Director Nicholas Hytner and Writer Arthur Miller
**Featurette (from original EPK)
**A Conversation with Daniel Day Lewis and Arthur Miller (from original EPK)
Cast & Crew
There's an awful, piercing truth in the performances of Daniel Day-Lewis, Winona Ryder, Joan Allen and Paul Scofield as members of a community destroyed by guilt, paranoia and betrayal.
This version illuminates the story's numerous strengths, resulting in a motion picture of surprising emotional and intellectual impact.
With a head on its shoulders and the rawest emotions in its craw, Arthur Miller's stage hit The Crucible has become a cinematic grabber for grown-ups -- without that castor oil taste.
Ryder, usually a soft, placid actress, unleashes a bold new anger here.