I got a request a while ago to recommend a few good fantasy movies. I’m going to assume they meant besides Star Wars or Lord of the Rings. So… let’s get into them.
- Nausica of the Valley of the Wind.
Pretty much any studio Ghibli movie would do, but this one is considered Miyazaki’s grand masterpiece… and its my favorite.
- Army of Darkness
Yeah yeah… I know the evil dead series is supposed to be Horror/Suspense/Thriller, but this one is definitely way outside the norm for those movies. This is not the same thing.
- Sinbad the Sailor
ANY Sinbad the Sailor movie. Even the lesser-known ones are spectacular in their own way. I literally have all of them on DVD and love them!
- Merlin (1998)
This little-known made of TV movie starring Sam Neill (Jurassic Park, Even Horizon) is about as close to the source material as one can get while still making an enjoyable movie. It is sad and laced with tragedy all throughout and the effects haven’t aged well… but the ending really saves it. Watch it all the way through and it will become a memorable movie you’ll love for years to come.
- The Secret of Nimh
Don Bluth movies hold a very special place in my heart, and this one is no exception. They often appear dark and drab, but the substance of the story is really incredible… just stay away from the sequel.
- Big Trouble in Little China
Hahahahahaha… Just go… go watch it. Never in your life will you see another movie that makes you smile and applaud while asking the person next to you ‘What the hell did we just watch?’ like this one. It’s a total classic for all the wrong reasons.
- How to Train Your Dragon
Yeah, didn’t think a Dreamworks movie would make it on here, did you? Well it did. This is about as close to Norse Mythology as most modern kids’ movies get.
- The Black Cauldron
Sigh… I know a lot of people hated this movie, but it stars John Hurt, arguably one of the most underrated actors of all time and I honestly really enjoyed it.
Loved the book, love the movie. This is a romance between a Fae (Star) and a human. It’s funny, suspenseful, and extremely light/warm-hearted. It’s a good watch.
- The NeverEnding Story
The book is surprisingly better than the movie… I didn’t think it would be possible, but it is, and in comparing the two, I can see why Michael Ende wanted his name off of the movie.
Ehh… You could switch this out with the original Sleeping Beauty, but either works.
Campy and really light-heart. I love this movie… just don’t look directly at the crotch. (Most ladies and some guys know what I’m talking about.)
- Clash of the Titans
1981!!! I cannot stress this enough, go with the 1980 version. It is infinitely superior!
- The Last Unicorn.
Beautifully animated, abbreviated retelling of the classic story. The only downside are the terrible musical numbers.
Sort of a retelling of Star Wars in a High Fantasy style story, but great none-the-less.
- Return to Oz
This is the movie you punish your kids with and can get away with because it has a PG rating. (I know, I’m a bad man!) But even as an adult, it’s a freaky yet fascinating movie.
Tim Curry as Darkness… that’s… pretty much anyone can say about it.
Anything I missed? These aren’t the hugely known movies we all flock to, but are worth mentioning!
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