THE FANTASY GENRE
What makes a good Fantasy movie? In general, they usually tend to be about magic, supernatural events, mythology, folklore, or fantasy worlds. So think wizards, witches, fairies, goblins, and enchantments – basically creatures and places that do not exist in the real world. There are sub genres in Fantasy movies so The Lord Of The Rings would be considered a High Fantasy film and then you have Sword and Sorcery movies that are heavier on the action and battles between good and evil.
But where did it all begin? Often confused with sci-fi movies, the earliest fantasy film made was by French filmmaker Georges Méliès. It was released in 1902 and was called A Trip to the Moon. It was a short silent movie about a group of astronomers who travel to the Moon. It was hugely successful mostly because it was one of the first to use innovative special effects.
And once the first fantasy movie was made, it wasn't long before the rest of the industry got on board. With sound came the likes of Alice in Wonderland, The Wizard of Oz and the iconic King Kong in the 1930s.
In terms of ‘sword and sorcery' it was an Italian movie in 1941 that stunned the world. La Corona di Ferro by Alessandro Blasetti was set in two imaginary kingdoms as they fought for the Iron Crown. It was unlike anything done beforeand is still considered an act of genius. Just a few years later would see the publication of J. R. R. Tolkien's Lord Of The Rings and the Fantasy genre as we know it today was well and truly born.
AMAZON PRIME FANTASY
CLASSIC FANTASY FILMS
There have been some incredible fantasy movies that have stood the test of time. Who can forget Jason and the Argonauts (1963), Mary Poppins (1964), or the original Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory (1971)? Space, flying nannies, dancing animals, oompa loompas and never-ending gobstoppers. They were so fantastical for their time that even today we still watch them.
As the time rolled on, moviemakers started to have more tricks up their sleeves. Not only were the effects improved but the stories had more depth and angst. The Princess Bride (1987), Highlander (1986), and Labyrinth (1986) are classics from the era. And while they are beloved movies, it wasn't until the 2000s that we really saw a boom in the fantasy movie genre.
Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon (2000) become the highest-grossing foreign-language film produced overseas in American history. Alongside the $231 million it grossed at the box office (worldwide), it was also nominated for 10 Academy Awards in 2001, winning Best Foreign Language Film, Best Art Direction, Best Original Score and Best Cinematography.
2001 saw the first of The Lord of the Rings trilogy, with all three netting $2.991 billion in worldwide box office revenue. But then again, nothing on that scale had really ever been seen in the cinema. Incredibly, a total of 1828 km (six million feet) of film was edited down to the 11 hours and 26 minutes (686 minutes) of extended running time. It is still one of the greatest movie trilogies ever made and solidified the fantasy genre forever.
DISNEY FANTASY REVIEWS
APPLE TV FANTASY REVIEWS
PARAMOUNT FANTASY REVIEWS
DISNEY FANTASY REVIEWS
Here you can view our latest Fantasy movies and series reviews from major streaming services.
FANTASY HIDDEN GEMS
Here you can view hidden gems which you may have missed on original release.