There’s just something about necromancy, illusions, and magic that captures the imaginations of people. It’s become an ever-growing and popular niche in the film industry. Magic even appears in Marvel films, with the likes of Doctor Strange and Elizabeth Olsen who stars as Scarlet Witch who bring the realm of mysticism and magic to the MCU. Make sure to check out the following flicks that include a mix of wizardry, illusion, and witchcraft.
Here are the top 12 best movies about magic ever made.
Now You See Me
After Zombieland, Woody Harrelson and Jesse Eisenberg reunited to star in Now You See Me, one of the most confusing movies. The film revolves around the Four Horsemen, a group of four magicians who are in an order called The Eye, which is comprised of “real magicians.” The group pulls off elaborate heists and throughout the film, there are many blink-or-you’ll-miss-it moments with excellent sleight-of-hand tricks. Mark Ruffalo plays an FBI agent tasked with tracking down the Robin-Hood-esque Four Horsemen. The script is silly and insane, but Now You See Me makes for superb popcorn entertainment. Morgan Freeman and Michael Caine also star in the film.
Ron Howard’s Willow is a fantasy film that stars Warwick Davis who plays a farmer dubbed ‘Willow’ who has to babysit a child who is prophesized to defeat the evil Queen Bavmorda. Willow masters his powers of sorcery throughout his journey and is helped by fairies, brownies, and even Val Kilmer who plays a Madmatigan swordman. Willow defeats Bavmorda and learns that good always triumphs evil. Although the film originally wasn’t well-received, it has since gained a cult following. The film has effects from ILM and a score by James Horner, a match made in fantasy heaven!
Practical Magic stars a fresh-off of Speed 2: Cruise Control Sandra Bullock and Nicole Kidman in this rom-com based on a novel of the same name. Practical Magic is a story about two sisters with magical powers that get cursed so that any man who falls in love with them dies. The film is a silly yet enjoyable love story with spells and hexes to entertain even the most critical cynic. Looking for more movies with Sandra Bullock? Check her out in the latest Netflix Original movie.
Lord of Illusions
Clive Barker made some of the best horror films including Hellraiser and Nightbreed. But despite his incredibly horrific and grotesque style, one of his lesser-known films, Lord of Illusions (1995) is a hit. The iconic Harry D’Amour is played by Scott Bakula and marks the character’s first appearance on the big screen. Barker ended up writing and directing the film about a man who uses “The Puritan”, which is considered pure magic. There’s more than meets the eye and Detective D’Amour takes on a case that involves the murder of a psychic. The films feature amazing make-up and effects, and Barker’s imagination showcases unique magic in the film. Lord of Illusions is an excellent, dark magical film with stunning tricks and an intriguing premise not for the faint of heart.
One of the most bellowed trios in cult cinema is the Sanderson Sisters played by the talented Bette Milder, Kathy Najimy, and Sarah Jessica Parker. The witches’ main goal is to be pretty and young again. Hocus Pocus makes for an excellent Halloween flick for kids of all ages. The film is packed to the brim with silly spells, buck teeth, and over-the-top costumes. It’s hard not to smile when watching the film. “I Put a Spell on You,” performed by Bette Milder is an added bonus for viewers.
An adaptation of Neil Gaiman’s Novel, Stardust isn’t just another movie about a trio of witches seeking an eternity of youth. Matthew Vaughn directs this masterpiece which includes a pirate (Robert de Niro), a star personified by a woman played by Claire Daines, and unicorns. The story revolves around Tristan Thorn, played by Charlie Cox (Daredevil) who falls in love with Daines (a star) to go on and become the master of his own destiny. The supporting cast in the film includes Peter O’Toole, Ricky Gervais, Henry Cavill, Ian McKellen, Michelle Pfieffer, and Mark Strong. Stardust has cute characters and strong world-building, as well as magic in full display for a family-friendly experience.
Labyrinth is a sight to behold and an undeniable 80s fantasy classic starring David Bowie as Jareth the Golbin King and Jim Henson puppets. Labyrinth only has two human actors in the film, Bowie and Jennifer Connelly as Sarah. The film revolves around Sarah who’s on a quest to save her infant brother Toby from the Goblin King (Bowie). The film is definitely worth a watch simply due to David Bowie’s stellar performance.
Chihiro is a young girl stuck in the spirit world of Hayao Miyazaki’s Spirited Away. Chihiro’s parents are transformed into pigs by Yubaba the witch that Chihiro then works for in her bathhouse. She works to free her family and to return to the human realm. John Lasseter of Pixar fame spearheaded the English-language version, but in Japan it became the highest-grossing film of all time, outperforming the Titanic. The film went on to win an Oscar for Best Animated Feature. The film is a magical work of art and one of the best that Studio Ghibli has to offer!
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Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
The Prisoner of Azkaban, directed by Alfonso Cuaron is claimed to be one of the best of 8 Harry Potter films, and also one that does not feature Lord Voldemort. The film also featured Hogwarts students donning clothes other than their school uniforms, as well as crafting a darker world compared to the previous films. Rowling’s already crafted a huge magical world, but the dementors and their deadly kiss, a professor with a fill-moon problem, and the peaceful giant Hippogriff just add to the film’s mystique. Although it was difficult to narrow it down to just one Harry Potter film, we feel the Prisoner of Azkaban offers up the most magical elements.
The Prestige offers up no “real” magic at all, yet the Christopher Nolan-directed film brought out great performances from Christian Bale, who starred as Batman in Batman Begins before in 2006. The Prestige is superior to The Illusionist and tells the story of two rival magicians on their journey to pull off the greatest magic trick. The star-studded cast includes Hugh Jackman, Scarlett Johansson, Christian Bale, Michael Caine and even features David Bowie. The twists and turns keep you guessing and the film offers some of Nolan’s greatest work. Michael Caine’s speech about how magic works to trick the audience is a work of art. You’ve got to see this one, just make sure not to look up the ending!
Did we miss any from the list of best movie with magic ever made? Let us know what your favorite movie with magic is in the comments.