The Witch Who Came from the Sea (1976) - Rotten Tomatoes

The Witch Who Came from the Sea (1976)




Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

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Movie Info

Two interesting figures in offbeat cinema -- director Matt Cimber (who was married to Jayne Mansfield and directed her final film before going on to a handful of expressive blaxploitation efforts) and screenwriter Robert Thom (who wrote Wild in the Streets and Bloody Mama) -- teamed up for this unusual portrait of one woman's descent into madness. Molly (Millie Perkins) is a woman who is haunted by vivid memories of abuse and molestation at the hands of her father, who was a ship's captain; now middle-aged, Molly is obsessed by the ocean and images associated with pirates and sailing lore, which fill her with both fascination and loathing. Molly dotes on her young nephews (Jean Pierre Camps and Mark Livingston) and often spins tall tales for them in which her father is a noble hero, but her sister, Cathy (Vanessa Brown), is not comfortable with her presence, and soon the boys are old enough to spend their time elsewhere. Single and lonely, Molly longs for a man, and is openly attracted to strong, burly types, but at the same time she bears a deep hatred for them, and sometimes murders and dismembers the men she lures into her home. However, given Molly's penchant for fantasy, how much of her story is real, and how much is the product of her twisted imagination? Shot in 1971 but not released until 1976, The Witch Who Came From the Sea was one of the first feature films for cinematographer Dean Cundey, who later went on to work with Steven Spielberg and Ron Howard.


Rick Jason
as Billy Batt
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Critic Reviews for The Witch Who Came from the Sea

All Critics (5)

Molly... is a complex flesh-and-blood character whose derangement is presented with immense sensitivity and sympathy - and her descent into madness is figured less as visceral slice-and-dice than as heightened domestic tragedy.

Full Review… | February 20, 2016

A grindhouse poem

Full Review… | February 16, 2011

Straddles an exploitation line in telling a simple tale with an unexpected degree of pretense and, if only occasionally, artistry.

Full Review… | March 2, 2005
Film Freak Central

An absurd story with no redeeming qualities

December 22, 2004

Audience Reviews for The Witch Who Came from the Sea


Weird mid-70's trip that will make you think you're pill popping and drinking like the 'heroine' Molly. Not great, but engaging and definitely in the bizarro category.

Joe Moran
Joe Moran

Bizarre mish-mash of sexuality, horror, terrible & great writing, exploitation and art-house, that works just over 50% of the time. Certainly one for those interested in bizarre forgotten horror films.

Daniel Parsons
Daniel Parsons

Super Reviewer


This movie sorta surprised me, as I went into it expecting a straight up witch to be killing people, but as it turns out there's just a fairly normal slasher type story to be found here. That said, I enjoyed it pretty well as this unbalanced gal starts hacking up her various lovers and other men in the nearby sleep seaside town. Fun stuff, give it a look.

Bill Bryant
Bill Bryant

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