We round up the reviews for Warner Bros’ new film based on Roald Dahl’s story.

Empire: *** “Kicky and colourful, it ushers in its titular characters with elan, but ultimately is somewhat lacking in the frights department. And while it hits all the lurid beats of Dahl’s tale, it fails to add much of its own, aside from transplanting the action from 1980s Bournemouth to 1960s Alabama.”

The Guardian: ** “In the end there is a strange nihilist grumpiness in The Witches: not so much the charge of misogyny that is sometimes levelled against this tale, but the sense that (with the exception of the grandmother) the grownups are useless or malign and the children themselves perhaps have more purpose to their lives once they are transformed into mice. The spell does not get cast.”

Screen Rant: “The Witches is a faithful adaptation, and that is its biggest shortcoming. By sticking very closely to the original plot, Zemeckis (along with his impressive co-writers Guillermo del Toro and Kenya Barris) has crafted a film that’s rather light.”

BBC.co.uk: *** “The script is disappointing thus the film is inevitably disappointing, which is a shame because it is not all bad.”

The Mirror: ** “Ultimately, despite a fun turn from Anne Hathaway and an always reliable Octavia Spencer, the new adaptation of The Witches fails to do justice to the Roald Dahl classic.”

IGN.com: “Still, even if Zemeckis doesn’t take full advantage of the story he’s telling, and seems disinterested in character or commentary, he still manages to provide a basic family-friendly spectacle.”

Vox.com: ” The Witches inexplicably overlays two separate stories onto one another, and no one else in the cast is quite sure which one they’re in at any given moment.”

Variety.com: “Anne Hathaway’s performance provides the film with a sick-joke center of gravity, and Zemeckis, sticking to Dahl’s elemental storyline, stages it all with a prankish flair that leaves you buzzed.”

The Witches is available to stream now.