Magical Movies

Those of you who know me may know that I have an interest in magic. Not the stage-kind, mind you (though that, too, is interesting). I’m taking about magick. The black arts. Sorcery.

Movies often deal with magic and the supernatural, to varying degrees of realsim. Some get it “right”, while some are so hokey that even the completely mundane-minded know it’s wrong. Here are some movies that deal with magic in one form or another, and how I think they did.

The Skeleton Key. I know a lot of people who didn’t like this, for one reason or another. One think I can say about it is that it’s one of the most realistic depictions of magic I’ve seen. Almost everything that happens can be explained by coincidence (which works because magic travels the path of least resistance), or psychology.

The Dark Crystal As a child, this movie got me interested in magic. There was something that felt genuine, even to my six-year-old mind, about the circle and line drawings that the Mystics drew. Later, when reading a book on the making of this film, I found out that the shapes are loosely based on the Kaballah, which would explain the realism. I love this movie.

Constantine Don’t get me started. Actually, aspects of this felt right, but it was way to action-based. The opening exorcism is great until Keanustantine says, “I’m John Constantine, asshole!” and punches the demon in the face. I’m sure this movies good if you’re drunk.

Nightwatch. OK. A lot of this movie was just a cool, supernatural action movie, but the stuff near the beginning, when Anton is talking to the witch was pretty good. Oh, and all those magical shapes on his desk come out of The Key of Solomon, The Goetia, and The Grimorium Verum. I checked them with my own copies.

Willow Yeah, I know. It’s another fantasy movie. However, it does have one valuable lesson about magic…it’s about confidence. When Willow fails to become the next apprentice, it is due to self doubt, which is the magician’s bane. Also, the fact that magic, when used to mess with someone’s will, doesn’t make he or she do something he or she wouldn’t do anyway is a good lesson. We see this when Madmartigan falls in love with Sorsha (mmmm…Joanne Whalley…).

So….anyone else care to discuss?


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