38 Movies About Witches That Are Absolutely Spellbinding
Witches often get a bad rap. Sure, plenty of witches throughout history and in fiction are often depicted as evil old ladies who are out to steal youth and beauty and curse people for eternity. But not all fictional witches have horrible goals in mind. Take Glinda the Good Witch in "The Wizard of Oz." She only wanted to help Dorothy and Toto find their way home. Her name says it all! And though we probably remember the evil witches a little better than the nice ones, pop culture is full of witches who are quite lovely.
Some fictional witches, though, can be found in some seriously scary horror movies, like "The Wretched," "Rosemary's Baby," and "The Blair Witch Project." These films take the more twisted idea of a witchy character and use it to spook viewers, playing up that bad rap we mentioned. These witches may not take the form of your witchy Halloween costume — with a pointed black hat, broomstick, and cauldron — but they're chilling characters who are absolutely iconic in both the witch and horror genres.
If you're looking for straight-up horror movies about witches, have no fear (or, some fear), because this list of witch movies has plenty of those for you to enjoy. But there are also plenty of lighthearted Disney movies, romantic comedies, and kids movies that also feature some iconic and delightful witches. Ahead, these are 38 of our favorite witch movies.
"Bedknobs and Broomsticks"
Miss Price (the late Angela Lansbury) is a witch in training in this classic movie from 1971. In the film, Miss Price uses her magical powers to aid England during World War II. During her adventure, she meets three very mischievous children — Charlie (Ian Weighill), Carrie (Cindy O'Callaghan), and Paul Rawlins (Roy Snart) — and a con artist named Emelius (David Tomlinson) who assist her. By using a bewitched bed, they all travel to a faraway land to stop the German troops and defend England in the war. This movie is equal parts whimsy and relatable and shows a positive side to witches who sometimes use their magical powers for good.
"I Married a Witch"
It's the 17th century and Jennifer (Veronica Lake) is about to be burned at the stake for being a witch. Before she can, though, she casts a spell on her accuser and his family, damning all the men to fall in love with the wrong women until the end of time. Hundreds of years pass and each man leads a miserable love life, thanks to Jennifer. But when Jennifer finds her way back to the human world, she decides to switch up her spell to really screw over the descendants of her accuser. She casts a new spell on the current descendant so that he'll fall in love with her.
Set in 1960s Louisiana, this film follows Eve (Jurnee Smollett) a young woman who's world is turned upside-down. Eve was once none the wiser about her father's adulterous ways, but one fateful night changes it all. When Eve catches her dad Louis (Samuel L. Jackson) in the act, it creates a rift in her family. Eve doesn't want to deal with it, though, and instead retreats to her aunt Mozelle (Debbi Morgan). But soon Eve, her psychic aunt, and her witchy friend learn more and more about Louis's problematic ways, and Eve decides the only answer is to have her new witch friend do some voodoo on him.
In this classic witch film, three witches — Winifred (Bette Midler), Sarah (Sarah Jessica Parker), and Mary (Kathy Najimy) — are released from the purgatory they've been stuck in and are brought back into their old house. Allison (Vinessa Shaw) tries to warn new kids Max (Omri Katz) and his sister Dani (Thora Birch) about the witches, but it's too late! Now the kids have to try to banish the witches back where they came from. It requires the help of one Thackery Binx — a black cat who's anything but — to steal back the witches' spell book and get rid of them once and for all. Disney+ released a sequel, "Hocus Pocus 2," in 2022.
Sister witches Sally (Sandra Bullock) and Gillian Owens (Nicole Kidman) have mostly stayed away from their magical past, but the time has come for them to finally accept their lineage. When Gillian's questionable boyfriend Jimmy (Goran Visnjic) dies, the sisters try to resurrect him, which doesn't go according to plan. Instead, they manage to stick something evil in his body who threatens them and their future. Throw in a dogged cop, Gary (Aidan Quinn), who's hot on their tail, and they've got themselves quite the predicament. Will they succeed with resurrecting Jimmy properly, or will they get themselves caught by the authorities?
"The Little Mermaid"
Ursula the sea witch is Ariel's biggest enemy in this Disney classic. Ariel the mermaid just wants to be part of the human world — and she is also very much in love with Prince Eric. Ariel tries to bargain with Ursula, who claims she can help her become part of the human world, but she'll have to trade her beautiful singing voice to get legs instead of flippers. Ariel finally finds herself on land, but she's unable to communicate with Prince Eric since she lost her voice. Her one hope is that with true love's kiss, Ariel can have her voice back. However, Ursula doesn't plan to let Ariel succeed so easily. Melissa McCarthy plays Ursula in Disney's 2023 live-action remake.
"The Witches of Eastwick"
Head to Eastwick to meet close friends Alexandra (Cher), Jane (Susan Sarandon), and Sukie (Michelle Pfeiffer). All three women are single and ready to mingle, but they're not having a whole lot of luck in the love department. Enter: Daryl Van Horne (Jack Nicholson), a mysterious stranger who woos all three of the women in their own way, while awakening powers within them. With their newfound powers, the women use their abilities to bring order into their lives and find happiness. However, something isn't sitting right with them. Who exactly is Daryl, and what are his intentions with this trio?
When teenager Louise (Robyn Lively) finds out she has witchy abilities, she harnesses her powers for what most teenagers would: popularity. Louise literally works her magic to go from a nerd, to the most popular girl in school. Once she's accomplished that, she sets her sight one guy in particular, Brad (Dan Gauthier). As Louise takes takes down bullies and tries to sway the eyes of cute guys, she soon learns that her actions have dire consequences. While popularity might seem awesome at first, Louise eventually finds that the way she was before may not have been so bad after all.
Gwen (Judith Hoag) is a witch, but she's determined to lead a normal life. That means keeping her kids from enjoying Halloween and falling into the throes of this bewitched holiday. Her own mother Aggie (Debbie Reynolds) is also a witch, and very much wants her grandkids, especially 12-year-old Marnie (Kimberly J. Brown), to start accepting their witchy future. Gwen's not having it, but when Marnie and her siblings follow their grandma home to Halloweentown after Halloween, they find out the root of why Gwen is so against the holiday. And when she turns 13, Marnie finds out she's also a witch, and her grandma needs her help to fight the darkness in Halloweentown.
Matthew (Vincent Price) earns the title of Witchfinder General amid the Civil War. As his title suggests, Matthew is tasked with seeking out witches throughout the country. But the Witchfinder General doesn't need to just find the witches, he has to use any means necessary to get them to admit to being witches. For each confession he garners from the witches, he's paid a pretty penny. The Witchfinder General carries out his mission across as much land as he can reach, but will he eventually take it too far? When there's money on the line, some people will take things to the extreme.
"Howl's Moving Castle"
A common theme among witches is anger toward women who are younger and more beautiful than them. Such is the case with "Howl's Moving Castle" and Sophie. Sophie is a beautiful young woman who befriends a wizard named Howl. But the Witch of Waste becomes jealous of their connection, so she places a curse on Sophie to make her less beautiful. Not only that, but it's a curse that makes her age rapidly to seemingly make her less appealing to Howl. Now Sophie and Howl have to work together using Howl's magic to reverse the spell, and defeat the witch for good.
Princess Asa Vajda (Barbara Steele) and her lover Javutich (Arturo Dominici) are accused of witchcraft and doomed to death. On her way out, Asa places a curse on her brother and all his descendants before her body is laid to rest in the family's royal tomb. Hundreds of years later, Asa's tomb is opened by a professor, releasing her back to the human world. With plenty of time to ruminate over what happened to her, Asa is understandably not very happy and is ready to take it out on anyone she can. In her path for revenge, one of her own descendants remains a prime target.
"Bell, Book, and Candle"
Modern witch Gillian (Kim Novak) is out for two things: love and revenge. In an effort to make Shepherd (Jimmy Stewart) fall in love with her, she casts a few love spells to do the trick. But what she really wants out of all of this is to steal him away from her nemesis. See? She doesn't really want the love — at least not on her end. When it comes to toying with people's emotions, Gillian is an expert, but she didn't think too far ahead for this latest trick. When her whole plan starts to backfire, Gillian is left with a huge mess than she never could've imagined.
"City of the Dead"
Whitewood, MA, is not at all what it seems. Nan Barlow (Venetia Stevenson) comes to town to learn about witchcraft and the town's history, but she learns this town has a much darker past than she imagined. For one, the innkeeper Mrs. Newless (Patricia Jessel) isn't actually a kind clerk. In fact, she's a reincarnated witch from hundreds of years ago, and she's on a mission to become immortal — but she's not the only one! It turns out that the whole town is made up of a coven of witches who are all trying to become immortal, and they'll do anything to accomplish it.
"An American Haunting"
"An American Haunting" revolves around a supernatural event that took place in 1800s Tennessee. It was believed that this event was the first, and only time, a person was killed by a spirit. The film follows the Bell family, whose matriarch finds a letter written by their ancestors about this horrific event. She learns that their ancestor was cursed by a witch almost 200 years prior, damning the family. It turns out that the family's daughter is plagued with nightmares, which become actual attacks. The family tries to protect themselves from the evil spirits, even calling on a local teacher for help, but nothing seems to be able to reverse the evil the witch and the spirits have sent upon them.
Based on the classic 1960s TV show of the same name, "Bewitched" is an incredibly meta story of a re-creation of that exact TV show. Make sense? Jack Wyatt (Will Ferrell) is a movie star trying to revamp his career when he's cast as Darrin in a remake of "Bewitched." The studio casts a relative unknown to play Samantha — a woman named Isabel (Nicole Kidman). But as Jack gets to know Isabel, he realizes that her casting in the movie was done well — almost too well. It turns out that Isabel is, in fact, a witch, just like Samantha in the old "Bewitched."
"The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe"
Based on the book of the same name by C. S. Lewis,"The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe" follows four children in England, Lucy (Georgie Henley), Peter (William Moseley), Edmund (Skandar Keynes), and Susan (Anna Popplewell) who come across a mysterious wardrobe in their new home. Lucy finds it first, and realizes this piece of furniture acts as a portal a fantasy land. She goes back to find her siblings, bringing them across to the mystical land of Narnia. Once in the snowy locale, they find a magical lion named Aslan (Liam Neeson) and the White Witch, Jadis (Tilda Swinton) at war.
For an old-school take on witches, try this 1922 film that's both a documentary and a fictionalized version of the history of witches and witchcraft. The doc dives into satanism and demonology, how it has evolved over the years, and how it all ties into women and witchcraft. Snippets from old pieces of literature and history that date back to medieval times are woven together to tell an intriguing narrative about witch trials and accusations. The documentary also brings psychology into question, challenging the validity of such claims that have specifically targeted and demonized women for several centuries. This film is a must-watch for history buffs that have an interest in the early days of witchcraft.
"Into the Woods"
"Into the Woods" is basically a musical amalgamation of a number of classic fairytale stories. After a witch (Meryl Streep) curses a baker (James Corden) and his wife (Emily Blunt) to never have kids. However, the witch cuts them a deal: If the couple can restore her beauty, she'll reverse the spell. This mission leads the couple through the treacherous woods, in which they fulfill a number of wishes tied to other fairy tales. On their quest, they come across Cinderella (Anna Kendrick), Little Red Riding Hood (Lilla Crawford), Rapunzel (Mackenzie Mauzy), and more. However, there's a twist halfway through the film that is sure to catch viewers off-guard. The movie is based on the Stephen Sondheim musical of the same name.
This spooky witch tale starring Anya Taylor-Joy takes place in New England during the 1600s. The film follows a family that is shunned by their village and sent out to live in the middle of the woods in complete isolation. When the family's young son disappears, the parents accuse Thomasin (Taylor-Joy) of being responsible. Not only was she supposed to be watching the boy when he went missing, but her sisters also suspect her of witchcraft. The family quickly devolves as more connections to dark magic become apparent, causing them to quickly blame Thomasin as the root of the evil the family has been facing.
"The Love Witch"
Elaine (Samantha Robinson) is a witch on the hunt for true love. Using a bunch of spells, potions, and magical knowhow, she brews up connections with various men. The only problem is that she gets really, really good at it, and suddenly everyone's falling in love with her! Despite having all of these men throwing themselves at her, Elaine finds herself not feeling satisfied with her suitors. Although she wants love more than anything, these men just aren't right! However, when the man of her dreams walks into her life, she falls fast and hard in love. But Elaine's deadly and sinister past slowly catches up to her, threatening her newfound connection.
"Kiki's Delivery Service"
In this Hayao Miyazaki-directed animated feature, a witch named Kiki moves to a little town where she can learn how to use her magic. She brings along her cat Jiji and together they start a cozy life together. As Kiki learns her magic and how to use her flying broomstick, she starts a delivery service in the waterfront town. She's learning, gaining confidence, and making friends along the way until a wrench is thrown into everything that puts a wrinkle in her courage. Her magic starts draining and in order to get it back, she has to prove to herself that she's worthy to be the witch she wants to be.
"Mary and the Witch's Flower"
Mary and her cat live in a fantastical world with lots to discover. Upon wandering into the woods one day, she finds the Fly-by-Night flower that only blooms every seven years. Alongside it is a broomstick, and together these two items carry Mary to a magical school where she can learn how to harness her powers. However, the school isn't as magical as Mary thought, and there's actually a lot of darkness among the witches and wizards who run the place. Mary's life ends up in danger when she starts telling lies, forcing her to set things right before everything spirals out of control.
"The Wizard of Oz"
Dorothy (Judy Garland) is off to see the wizard, the wonderful wizard of Oz! Dorothy and her faithful dog Toto follow the yellow brick road to the Emerald City to find the wizard who can send them back home to Kansas after a tornado dropped them into this fantasy world. Along the way, Dorothy meets Scarecrow (Ray Bolger), who needs a brain, Tin Man (Jack Haley), who needs a heart, and Cowardly Lion (Bert Lahr), who is looking for courage. Together, they try to take down the Wicked Witch of the West to earn the wizard's favor after being pointed in the right direction by Glinda the Good Witch.
"The Lords of Salem"
Heidi (Sheri Moon Zombie) a radio DJ in Salem, MA, finds herself in possession of a mysterious album by The Lords. She plays it and sees disturbing visions of a coven of witches ritually giving birth. The music sticks with her in the coming days, and when the album is played on air, the women in Salem all go into a trance. Heidi continues to have bizarre visions of witches and demons, sending her into a downward spiral. The mysterious Lords behind the music start to take shape to Heidi, but the damage from the demonic music has already taken hold.
"The Sword in the Stone"
Before King Arthur was King Arthur, he was simply an orphan in England with slightly humble beginnings. While training to be a squire, little Arthur (affectionately called Wart as a child) meets Merlin, a powerful, but kooky wizard. Merlin tells Wart he's destined for greatness, which is hard to grasp when you're an orphan. Merlin takes Wart under his wing to teach him everything he needs to know. When Wart and his brother Kay travel to London for a jousting tournament, they come across a sword in an anvil that's part of a prophecy to reveal who should be king. All the boys make an attempt to pull it from the stone, but only one succeeds.
Teenager Ben Shaw (John-Paul Howard) is trying to find his footing after moving in with his dad amid his parents' divorce. While trying to make friends and settle into his new surroundings, things start to get weird. Ben learns of a witch who inhabits people and has the power to make someone forget their loved ones. When this witch possesses those closest to Ben, she wreaks havoc while leaving bodies in her wake. With this help of his dad, Ben tries to end the witch and rescue those she captured. They have to move quickly, though, before it's too late.
Young couple Rosemary (Mia Farrow) and her husband, Guy (John Cassavetes), move into a New York apartment that's teeming with personality and mystery. It has an eclectic bunch of people living there that the couple is skeptical of, but cautiously accepts as their new neighbors. Rosemary eventually becomes pregnant, but as the time wears on, she feels like something isn't quite right. She finds herself slowly growing further away from important people in her life as her pregnancy progresses. If this doesn't sound witchy, trust us when we say you have to watch the movie to find out why this film fits the theme for this list.
"The Witches" (1990)
Anjelica Huston is the Grand High Witch in this 1990 film — which means she is the creme de la creme of all the witches. While she and her fellow witchy friends are at a witch convention, their plans of turning children into mice is accidentally overheard by a very nosy child named Luke (Jasen Fisher). He can't get away before they find out he heard, though, and unfortunately for him, that means he becomes the guinea pig in their mouse experiment. From there it's a game of time for Luke's grandma (Mai Zetterling) to try to reverse the spell and free Luke from his teeny tiny mouse body.
In the very first animated movie Disney ever made, Snow White is the fairest in all the land, which is something the wicked witch is absolutely not OK with. Though she thought Snow White died as a baby, the witch eventually finds out that Snow White's been living in the forest with her seven dwarves all this time. So she disguises herself as an old hag to give Snow White a poison apple that will put her to sleep, hopefully for good. But, of course, Snow White can be awakened by true love's kiss — aka a kiss from the prince. A new live-action version is coming in 2024.
"Witching and Bitching"
This Spanish horror comedy is both tense and tongue-in-cheek as it finds a group of thieves in the witch-laden town of Zugarramurdi outside Madrid. Naturally, a coven captures the thieves and proceeds to use them as part of a number of rituals. But the thieves refuse to go down without a fight, causing all hell to break loose. One of the witches even swiftly falls in love with one of the thieves, leading to a ton of complicated drama. This movie is a roller coaster from beginning to end, and you never really know what way it's going to go. It'll sure make you laugh, though.
Teenagers Bonnie (Neve Campbell), Rochelle (Rachel True), and Nancy (Fairuza Balk) are a couple of cool girls with low-key powers. They fancy themselves witches, but they need a fourth to make their powers truly ascend. When Sarah (Robin Tunney) moves to town, the three teens know that her telekinetic powers are exactly what their group needs. Together they start using their witchy magic for both good and evil. On the upside, Bonnie finally gets the skin she always wanted. On the downside, they make one of the other girls in school lose all her hair. But that's just the beginning for these power-hungry teens.
"The Blair Witch Project"
The found-footage horror movie features three film students, Heather, Mike, and Josh, who go into the woods to follow the legend of the Blair Witch. Over the course of five days, they trek through the trees in search of the otherworldly being, only to wind up getting completely lost in the forest. The trio experiences incredibly terrifying moments as an unseen force taunts and terrorizes them every night they camp out. They record the entire ordeal on a camera, adding a whole new layer of fright to the entire scenario. Is the Blair Witch real? Give the film a watch and see for yourself!
In this anime film, Chihiro and her parents find themselves at an abandoned theme park of sorts after moving to a new area. As they're wandering around, Chihiro's parents find a booth of food that they start to eat. Unwilling to partake, Chihiro walks off and meets a mysterious boy named Haku. He warns her that her family must leave before sundown, but when Chihiro returns to retrieve her parents to leave, she finds they've been turned into pigs by the cursed food. Now they're all stuck at the theme park and Chihiro has to ask the resident witch to let her work off what her family owes so they can all leave together.
This 2018 remake of the 1977 Italian film stars Dakota Johnson as Susie Bannon, a ballet dancer who leaves her small town to go to Germany and join a dance company. But as soon as Susie arrives, she starts to learn about mysterious happenings among the other dancers and the matrons leading the company. The dancers start to accuse the matrons of being a coven of witches who worship the Three Mothers — a legendary group of witches in lore. Dancers start getting hurt and disappearing as time passes, meanwhile Susie starts to learn more and more about the darkness that runs through this dance company.
The Disney Channel Original Movie based on the book series of the same name follows twin sister witches (played by Tia and Tamera Mowry) who were born in an alternate universe called Coventry to a witch and warlock. The babies are separated at birth, and are quickly taken to Earth to be adopted by human parents. As adults, the sister reunite and learn that they're twins! After the shock wears off, they also realize that they're actually witches, and the only ones who can save Coventry from an evil calamity known simply as The Darkness. By channeling their powers together, they can defeat The Darkness and restore peace.
Based on the Neil Gaiman novel, "Stardust" is a fantasy of a man named Tristan (Charlie Cox) who is trying to win over Victoria (Sienna Miller). To do this, he has to travel into another world. It's there that he finds Yvaine (Claire Danes), who is on the run from an evil witch (Michelle Pfeiffer) who is trying to steal her youth and beauty. In addition to this, Yvaine is also trying to evade the king and his men who also need her for their own purposes. It's up to Tristan to save her if he wants to truly win Victoria's heart.
"The School For Good and Evil"
Netflix's 2022 film "The School For Good and Evil" follow best friends Sophie (Sophia Anne Caruso) and Agatha (Sofia Wylie), who learn about the titular school. Sophie, who dreams of being a princess, is desperate to go, but Agatha is dragged along with her bestie. Once they get there, though, Sophie is deemed evil, and Agatha good. As they try to sort out their own lives, they also have to work together to save the school. The movie also stars Kerry Washington and Charlize Theron.