Fantasy Friday is my own feature, posted every other Friday. It’s pretty self-explanatory: I do a feature on something to do with the genre. Sometimes it will be a book recommendation, sometimes showcasing a book or series I’ve loved and other times it might be a discussion post. You’re more than welcome to join in with this feature, let me know if you make your own Fantasy Friday post!
Today I want to talk about: my top fantasy films.
For some reason, this one was kind of hard. Looking through my DVD collection, I definitely own a LOT more science fiction films – and most of the fantasy I watch seems to be TV rather than film. Unless I’m just being incredibly forgetful… Some of these were instant answers, others took a little thinking. Also a lot of them are from my childhood…
The Lord of the Rings trilogy
Come on, are you really surprised?? The film adaptation of my favourite book ever, and it is BRILLIANTLY done. From the sets, to the costumes, from the cast to the locations – and THAT SOUNDTRACK. THAT SOUNDTRACK. Howard Shore’s music is one of the most beautiful things that I’ve ever heard, and it gives me chills. Plus some serious nostalgia. I already spoke about why I love The Lord of the Rings so much, and all those reasons are still valid here. I’ve copied a lot of my DVDs onto an external HDD to take to university, but this was the most important one. I’ve just completely lost count of how many times I’ve watched it. I’m counting them all together on here because I can’t really single them out – plus Tolkien intended the books to be one long book, so I like to see the films that way too. This is my perfect ‘feeling down or sick’ film – and I may have memorised bits of the script…
Why? Hobbits and elves and wizards, oh my! [icon name=”fa-heart”]
The Harry Potter series
Another unsurprising entry, I’m sure! I grew up with this series: although book Harry was always perhaps four years older than me, film Harry & co were always my age. The first film came out when I was 11 and although at the time I wasn’t massively impressed, I gradually grew to love the first few films after Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban came out, and in my opinion they greatly improve from Goblet of Fire onwards. I have to say that my favourites are Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, because I love the whole idea of Dumbledore’s Army plus loads of new characters appear (or more minor ones become more important) and just the entire atmosphere of the film, as well as Deathly Hallows Part 2. The trio all grown up and making Big Important Decisions! *wipes away tear*
Why? Have you SEEN Hogwarts?! [icon name=”fa-heart”]
Pretty much ever since I can remember, Robin Williams has been one of my favourite actors. Jumanji is one of my favourite childhood films along with Mrs Doubtfire (I was SO excited when I found them both on DVD for £3), and that’s partly to do with Williams’ talent and wit. Jumanji isn’t a fantasy in the tradition of the two films above, there are no elves or magic schools – but there is a magic board game that comes to life and, on occasion, pulls its players in… It’s thrilling, funny, fast-paced and just… again, makes me so nostalgic! Even now I can’t imagine Robin Williams as anyone else but this lovable buffoon – even in films like One Hour Photo where he plays a lonely middle-aged man who becomes fixated on this ‘perfect’ family. The scene in Jumanji where Alan realises that he’s been trapped in the game for years and that his parents are dead is just heart-breaking.
Why? Because I always wanted to play Jumanji… [icon name=”fa-heart”]
How To Train Your Dragon
I have to say I’ve only actually seen How To Train Your Dragon the once, and it was a couple of years ago, but I really loved it. It’s incredible how they took a book with only minor elements that they could use, and created something completely new, whilst still retaining the main themes of the book. I love how the dragons aren’t all ‘typical’ fantasy dragons, and they’re all unique. Plus it’s amazing how much one character can get across without actually speaking… Not to mention the fact that it’s about DRAGONS and VIKINGS. Can you get much cooler? No? No. The second film came out in cinemas recently, and it’s had some great reviews – one of the positives that people seem to focus on is how well the relationships are portrayed, and how natural they seem. A great achievement when you consider that all the characters are CG rendered. I can’t wait to see it!
Why? DRAGONS AND VIKINGS?? TOGETHER?? Yes.[icon name=”fa-heart”]
I’ll be so happy if any of my readers have ever watched (and enjoyed!) Willow. I can’t remember how old I was when I first saw this – perhaps 7 or 8? – but I remember we borrowed it from the video shop, loved it, and then probably borrowed it once every couple of months for a year or two until we finally bought our own copy. I haven’t watched it for years (but I think we have the DVD somewhere…), I just remember at the time it felt like this HUGE epic film, set in a sprawling fantasy land. All I can remember about the plot is that there is a baby (the princess??) who an evil sorceress wants to kill, and somehow the baby ends up with Willow’s family, so he has to go an Epic Quest to return her. Or something like that. It has stop-motion dragons, dogs dressed as giant rats and a character that I like to refer to as a ‘poor man’s Aragorn’. I hope you’re sold.