Writer-director Robert Eggers makes a shockingly self-assured feature debut with the terrifying “New England Folk Tale” of The Witch. A soul-withering, vaguely sexual slow creep in the vein of Under the Skin, only with all of the dialogue spoken in spot-on Old English, The Witch feels authentic both as Pilgrim anthropology and as a waking nightmare. In a tenuously settled American territory in the 17th century, a family of fundamentalists gets exiled from the commonwealth, forced to the edge of the forest for taking the popular religious doctrine too far. The father refuses to compromise his extreme beliefs about sin, taking his gospel to the freedom of the wilderness, but it’s not long before hunger, isolation, paranoia and supernatural terror tear the family apart. Undeniably disturbing and strangely elegant, The Witch creates its horror with such care that the film may be over before you realize it’s a tour-de-force genre classic. D.B.