Ever since I was a toddler I have been obsessed with Witches. Obsessed. It all started when I saw 'The Wizard Of Oz' and from their I developed an unhealthy diet of all things witches,oz and fairytales. In a recent discussion about witches and films about them I realised there was not too many well known films about my favourite villians and sometimes heroines. After some good research I present to you a list of standout witches and films that you should check out if have not seen them already . .
First up it is of course The Wicked Witch Of The West from the 1939 movie,The Wizard Of Oz'. There have been many versions of this character of the years but Margaret Hamilton's portryal of the witch and the decision to make her skin green made a huge impact on the public.When many people think 'witch' they think of this character. And lets not forget her for, Glinda The Good Witch, played here by actress Billie Burke.
The on screen chemistry between the two is further explored in the Broadway and West End musical, 'Wicked' in which it is discovered that the two are actually friends and gives in insight into the real story behind the pair and what really happened after Dororthy's arrival.
Another Oz witch,Mombie, featured here in the 1985 Disney cult classic,'Return To Oz'. This head stealing witch creeped every child out when she runs after a young Dorothy (played by Fairuza Balk who later went on to star as an evil witch herself in 'The Craft' and in 'The Worst Witch') with no head and later returns to her hall of heads to pick a new one out.
The 1980's classic ,'The Witches of Eastwick' features a brilliant ensemble cast of Susan Sarandon,Cher, Michelle Prieffer and Jack Nicholsan as the devil himself. Part comedy,part horror and part fantasy this film is fantastic and is defintley worth watching even for the effects alone.
The early 90's Disney classic ,'Hocus Pocus' again features a great ensemble. This trio of witches return to Salem in modern times to wreak havoc and steal the lives of all the children, but also face their own deamons - modern technology. Although intended as a children's comedy,it has alot of laugh out loud moments but still retains a dark tone and some great effects. Notable for Sarah Jessica Parkers brilliant song 'Come Little Children' as she flies over Salem.
Michelle Pfieffer steals the show as the head of the trio of sister witches in 'Stardust'. Evil,funny and sexy all at the same time.
In 1990 Angelica Houston played the role of a lifetime in Roal Dahl's 'The Witches'. Again a children's movie but a very dark one. I remember crying my eyes out with terror the first time I saw this as a young child, and I loved it! very dark,very creepy and very brilliant.Check it out.
A special note has to go to the witches in the Disney classics. Maleficant in 'Sleeping Beauty' is both sarcastic and scary while the original Queen and witch of 'Snow White' is terrifying in her change to the haggered witch.
'The Little Mermaid's Sea Witch Ursela is brilliant in being evil,scary and somewhat loveable at the same time. Big girls are beautiful.
'The Craft' was released in 1996 and mixed teen angst with witchcraft,horror and a soundtrack to die for. Fairuza Balk (Return To Oz) went from dark child to evil witch in this teen classic. A pure standout in the teen horror section this film is a must see for fans of witches and the occult.
In the 1980's Cannon Films released a series of Fairy Tale films. Low budget,dark but absloutley brilliant, these films were all given to me as a child. And terrifyed me. 'Snow White' sees the queen don many scary outfits,worst of all a singing creepy Geisha outside Snow Whites window.shiver. In the end the Queen literally falls apart in a disturbing scene.
'Hansel & Gretel' still scares me to this day. The witch played by Floris Leechman is more scary in her granny disguise while leering at the children through her eye glass while creepy music plays. She then bursts into the room in witch form and enslaves the children.
The next film,'Teen Witch' is a hit and miss with audiences. Part musical, part fantasy this film is simply about a teen who discovers she has magical powers. A bit silly but enjoyable. Currently talks are on to remake the movie.
'I Married A Witch' is an old classic. Loveable & cute, this witch just wants to make her 'fella' fall for her and goes out of her way to make that happen.
There are many other films with involve Witches,many however just aint up to scratch! If you have any films worth mentioning please mail me!
A special note to TV witches. Although there are many, the ones that stand out the most to me are 'Buffy The Vampire Slayer's' Willow Rosenberg. Better when she was a complete pshycopath I think.
'Sabrina The Teenage Witch' was and will always be fantastic and enjoyable television and Melissa Joan Hart bears no faults bringing this character to life.
The tv show 'HEX' features dark female ghosts,witches and deamons. Cool,sexy and scary!
The original cast of Charmed is also worth a mention,the first few seasons were pretty good and then things just went quickly down hill.
No tv witch list is worth its brew without mentioning Samantha from Bewitched. As I child I always loved the cartoon opening and her quirky mother.
All of these films are now available from Amazon aswell of the box sets of the shows. Some of the films including the Cannon Movies are available to watch on youtube right now. Enjoy.