Movies We LoveThere are movies, and then there are MOVIES. We'd like to know the ones you enjoy watching over-and-over again (is it possible to wear out a DVD?). After reading through all your suggestions, we've compiled a list of those you told us are the best. Don't see your favorite listed? Be sure to tell us what it is!
What are YOUR Favorites?
|Popularity||DVD Cover||Movie or TV Series||Votes||Average Rating|
If a broom falls, company is due. When a circle rings the moon, trouble looms, Should you misplace your broom, sorry; a hand vac can't be used in an exorcism rite. Fun and excitement abound in the Owens family of wily witches. One problem, though: the men the Owens women fall in love with are doomed to an untimely death. Sandra Bullock and Nicole Kidman bring a sparkling screen magic to Practical Magic, adapted from Alice Hoffman's bestseller and directed by Griffin Dunne (Addicted to Love). They play Sally and Gillian Owens, sisters hexed by a centuries -old curse...and coping with a witches brew of events involving a possible love match (Aidan Quinn) for one, a zombie (Goran Visnjic) for the other and a need to resume the age-old witchcraft taught by two doting Owens aunts (Stockard Channing and Dianne Wiest). Sit for a spell and enjoy.
Mists of Avalon
This adaptation of Marion Zimmer Bradley's sprawling and perennially popular book, whose retelling of the Arthurian legends focused on the role of powerful females, compresses a wealth of mysticism, family intrigue, and bloody swordplay into three hours. While the plot can meander slowly and can sometimes seem, well, mystifying, the work of three notable actresses holds the production together, and the numerous complications do eventually get resolved. As Viviane, the Lady of the Lake, Anjelica Huston endeavors to perpetuate the old religion as pagan Britain comes into contact with Christianity. The scheming Morgause, played to evil perfection by Joan Allen, conspires to her own ends. And Avalon priestess Morgaine, played by Julianna Margulies, travels the heroine's journey, overcoming tragedies, injustice, and all manner of obstacles in her duty to both "the goddess" and her younger brother, King Arthur. Although the action lags at times, the production is quite lavish for a made-for-television feature and the film is ultimately entertaining.
Witches of Eastwick
Need someone with demonic dash to portray the Devil? There are only two choices. Old Ned himself. And Jack Nicholson. The Witches of Eastwick to the better actor-and came up with the sleekest, sexiest supernatural comedy/thriller to emerge from this or any other world, earning Nicholson 1987 Best Actor Awards from the New York and Los Angeles Film Critics. The "witches" are in three modern-day women yearning for Mr. Right in a quaint New England town full of Mr. Uptights. Played glowingly by Cher (Moonstruck), Susan Sarandon (Lorenzo's Oil) and Michelle Pfeiffer (The Age of Innocence), they're lovely enough to tempt even the most jaded netherworld denizen. Soon, wealthy Daryl van Horne (Nicholson) arrives. Is his sudden appearance a coincidence? Or the outcome of the women's unconscious sorcery in this smooth adaptation of John Updyke's novel? Conjure up an evening's entertainment with The Witches of Eastwick. And have a devil of a good time.
Inspired by the Brothers Grimm, Jorge Luis Borges, and Guillermo del Toro's own unlimited imagination, Pan's Labyrinth is a fairytale for adults. Ofelia (Ivana Baquero) may only be 12, but the worlds she inhabits, both above and below ground, are dark as anything del Toro has conjured. Set in rural Spain, circa 1944, Ofelia and her widowed mother, Carmen (Ariadna Gil, Belle Epoque), have just moved into an abandoned mill with Carmen's new husband, Captain Vidal (Sergi López, With a Friend like Harry). Carmen is pregnant with his son. Other than her sickly mother and kindly housekeeper Mercedes (Maribel Verdú, Y Tu Mamá También), the dreamy Ofelia is on her own. Vidal, an exceedingly cruel man, couldn't be bothered. He has informers to torture. Ofelia soon finds that an entire universe exists below the mill. Her guide is the persuasive Faun (Doug Jones, Mimic). As her mother grows weaker, Ofelia spends more and more time in the satyr's labyrinth. He offers to help her out of her predicament if she'll complete three treacherous tasks. Ofelia is willing to try, but does this alternate reality really exist or is it all in her head? Del Toro leaves that up to the viewer to decide in a beautiful, yet brutal twin to The Devil's Backbone, which was also haunted by the ghost of Franco. Though it lacks the humor of Hellboy, Pan's Labyrinth represents Guillermo Del Toro at the top of his considerable game.
Escape into the enchanted world of chivalry and romance in Stardust, an epic tale starring Claire Danes with Michelle Pfeiffer and Robert De Niro. In hopes of wooing a beautiful girl (Sienna Miller), Tristan (Charlie Cox) promises to bring her a falling star. But he’s in for the adventure of his life when he discovers the star is actually a celestial beauty named Yvaine (Danes) When an old witch Lamia (Pfeiffer) attempts to steal Yvaine’s youth, Tristan must protect her at all costs, in this magical family adventure that will make you fall in love over and over again.
If Buffy the Vampire Slayer represents the lighter side of high school as a macabre experience, here's a movie that asks the burning question, "What happens when angst-ridden teenagers develop supernatural powers?" More to the point, how do four outcast teenaged witches handle their ability to cast wicked spells on the taunting classmates who've nicknamed them "The Bitches of Eastwick"? The answer, of course, is "don't get mad, get even." That's about all there is to this terminally silly movie, which makes up for its ludicrous plot by letting its young female cast have a field day as they indulge their dark fantasies. Fairuza Balk is enjoyable as the most wicked of the witches, and is therefore the focus of the film's most dazzling special effects. But it's Neve Campbell from television's Party of Five who made this film a modest box-office hit, just before she became her generation's fright-movie favorite in Scream and its popular sequel.
Oscar®-winner Nicole Kidman (Best Actress in a leading role, The Hours, 2002) and wickedly funny Will Ferrell star as actors playing Darrin and Samantha on a remake of the television show "Bewitched" in this cleverly crafty comedy from director Nora Ephron (Sleepless in Seattle, You've Got Mail). Egomaniacal star Jack Wyatt (Ferrell) casts unknown Isabel (Kidman) as his co-star in order to monopolize the limelight and regain his top spot on Hollywood's A-list. When Isabel, a real witch, discovers Jack's self-centered scheme, she conjures a sidesplitting spell the mere mortal will never forget!
Catherine Bell ( Army Wives ) stars as Cassie, a bewitching woman who moves into a mysterious mansion in a small town. Soon, she opens Bell, Book & Candle, a curiosity shop full of candles, lotions, etc., and is enthralling the children of the local Police Chief (Chris Potter), who believes that she is a witch (but not a bad one!). But not everyone in town is appreciative of their quirky new neighbor, and it may take a little bit of magic for her to truly become part of the community.
Sarah (a teenage Jennifer Connelly) rehearses the role of a fairy-tale queen, performing for her stuffed animals. She is about to discover that the time has come to leave her childhood behind. In real life she has to baby-sit her brother and contend with parents who don't understand her at all. Her petulance leads her to call the goblins to take the baby away, but when they actually do, she realizes her responsibility to rescue him. Sarah negotiates the Labyrinth to reach the City of the Goblins and the castle of their king. The king is the only other human in the film and is played by a glam-rocking David Bowie, who performs five of his songs. The rest of the cast are puppets, a wonderful array of Jim Henson's imaginative masterpieces. Henson gives credit to children's author and illustrator Maurice Sendak, and the creatures in the movie will remind Sendak fans of his drawings. The castle of the king is a living M.C. Escher set that adults will enjoy. The film combines the highest standards of art, costume, and set decoration. Like executive producer George Lucas's other fantasies, Labyrinth mixes adventure with lessons about growing up.
Lord of the Rings
This critically acclaimed epic trilogy follows the quest undertaken by the hobbit, Frodo Baggins, and his fellowship of companions to save Middle-earth by destroying the One Ring and defeating the evil forces of the Dark Lord Sauron.
|11||Sleepy Hollow |
The films of Tim Burton shine through the muck like a jack-o-lantern on a foggy October night. After such successes as The Nightmare Before Christmas and Edward Scissorhands, it should come as no surprise that Sleepy Hollow is a dazzling film, a delicious reworking of Washington Irving's The Legend of Sleepy Hollow. Dark and moody, the film is a thrilling ride back to the turn of the 19th century. Johnny Depp stars as Ichabod Crane, a seemingly hapless constable from New York City who is sent to the small town of Sleepy Hollow to solve the mystery of the decapitations that are plaguing the town. Crane is a bumbling sort, with a tremendous faith in science over mysticism, and he comes up against town secrets, bewitching women, and a number of bodies missing heads. Christina Ricci, as beautiful as ever, is Katrina Van Tassel, the offbeat love interest who alternately charms and frightens Crane.
With movies like Chocolat, it's always best to relax your intellectual faculties and absorb the abundant sensual pleasures, be it the heart-stopping smile of chocolatier Juliette Binoche as she greets a new customer, an intoxicating cup of spiced hot cocoa, or the soothing guitar of an Irish gypsy played by Johnny Depp. Adapted by Robert Nelson Jacobs from Joanne Harris's popular novel and lovingly directed by Lasse Hallström, the film covers familiar territory and deals in broad metaphors that even a child could comprehend, so it's no surprise that some critics panned it with killjoy fervor. Their objections miss the point. Familiarity can be comforting and so can easy metaphors when placed in a fable that's as warmly inviting as this one.
Driven by fate, Vianne (Binoche) drifts into a tranquil French village with her daughter Anouk (Victoire Thivisol, from Ponette) in the winter of 1959. Her newly opened chocolatier is a source of attraction and fear, since Vianne's ability to revive the villagers' passions threatens to disrupt their repressive traditions. The pious mayor (Alfred Molina) sees Vianne as the enemy, and his war against her peaks with the arrival of "river rats" led by Roux (Depp), whose attraction to Vianne is immediate and reciprocal. Splendid subplots involve a battered wife (Lena Olin), a village elder (Judi Dench), and her estranged daughter (Carrie-Anne Moss), and while the film's broader strokes may be regrettable (if not for Molina's rich performance, the mayor would be a caricature), its subtleties are often sublime. Chocolat reminds you of life's simple pleasures and invites you to enjoy them.
Charmed: The Complete First Season recaptures a period when television's WB network was particularly keen on series about the supernatural and specially powered characters. The original home of Buffy the Vampire Slayer and future launch pad for Angel and Smallville, the WB debuted Charmed in 1998 with many of the same intriguing ironies that made those other shows click. Specifically, the greater a character's powers, the more vulnerable he or she becomes; the more superhuman, the more painfully obvious one's lonely, fragile humanity. The Halliwells, a trio of witch heroines and siblings at the center of Charmed, is a case in point. Phoebe (Alyssa Milano) returns to her San Francisco family home after losing her job, and moves in with her older sisters Prue (Shannen Doherty) and Piper (Holly Marie Combs). On her first night back, Phoebe finds the Book of Shadows in the attic and recites a spell giving all three women unique powers they were always meant to have: Prue suddenly has the gift of telekinesis, Piper can make time stand still, and Phoebe can see into the future. All well and good, but along with those extraordinary abilities is a new awareness of dark forces in the world from which mortals need protection. In some cases, those forces have been plotting a long time to steal the Halliwell's magical legacy once they awakened to it--and now they will never let up.
Evil warlocks, demons, ancient curses, Grimlocks, and Wendigos (the last two are best left explained by their respective episodes), however, are only half the battle on this sexy dramedy, in which more ordinary matters of emotional and real-world survival also preoccupy the Halliwells. An important ally, Inspector Andy Trudeau (Ted King), is Prue's ex-lover, a delicate detail that mixes pain with duty as the couple rekindles their troubled relationship while solving otherworldly crimes. In "Dead Man Dating," Piper falls for the ghost of a murdered man who needs help, and later competes with Phoebe for the attention of a handyman, Leo (Brian Krause). Jobs and money are always an issue, too. At one time or another, Phoebe works as a psychic, Piper as a caterer, and Prue finds a job at an auction house. As with Buffy, the engine of Charmed is the seamless, sometimes-comic, sometimes-tender way in which all these dynamics in the magic and non-magic worlds blend together, presenting young adult challenges that are both unique and somehow terribly familiar. It is particularly fun to watch this series grow, deepen, and experiment during its first year. The season's true highlight is probably "That 70s Episode," in which the Halliwells go back in time to meet their younger selves.