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The 20 Best Fantasy Films You Need To Watch

08 May 2013 | Features, Film Lists | by David Zou

best fantasy films

Fantasy films are films with fantastic themes, usually involving magic, supernatural events, make-believe creatures, or exotic fantasy worlds.

They are most likely to overlap with the film genres of science fiction and horror. When the narrative of a fantasy film tends to emphasize advanced technology in a fantastic world, it may be considered predominantly a science fiction film. Or when the supernatural/fantasy forces are specifically intended to frighten the audience, a fantasy film falls more within the horror genre.

To list the greatest fantasy films of all time, we try to include films from different countries and decades. If you think any great fantasy films are omitted by us, please let us know in the comments below.

Without further ado, here are the 20 best films of this kind.


20. Conan The Barbarian


“To crush your enemies, see them driven before you, and to hear the lamentation of their women.”

Alright, it’s not exactly Shakespeare. Luckily, John Milius’ movie adap is more about admiring Arnold Schwarzenegger’s impressive chest measurements than it is pondering the movements of the universe.


19. The Fall


Tarsem Singh’s films are often accused of being visually sumptuous but thematically barren.

That accusation could also be levelled at The Fall, but it shouldn’t be: this is a film undulating with so much richness that it’s impossible to overlook. And while the images are typically ravishing, stars Lee Pace and Catinca Untaru lend the narrative vital warmth.


18. Time Bandits


After detaching himself from Monty Python’s Flying Circus for a go at directing solo, Terry Gilliam served up this lush time travel oddity, in which a young boy is whisked off on a journey through time with a band of dwarves.

A nod-wink delight, Time Bandits boasts all of Gilliam’s calling cards, from the gorgeous set design and quirky humor to the ambitious special effects.


17. Mary Poppins


Released at the height of Disney’s cinematic powers, this sugar-coated musical benefits from Julie Andrews’ bewitching turn as the titular nanny.

Then there’s Dick Van Dyke’s insane Lahndaan accent. The songs. The blending of live-action with animation. It’s the filmic equivalent of a spoonful of sugar.

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  • vgopal

    Nice list of movies u got here

  • ladyofargonne

    I had no idea Delicatessen was that kind of movie. I’ll have to check it out. And I like Alien Resurrection.