I Rewatched ‘Practical Magic’ As An Adult, And It’s Flawed But Still Fun

I say it every year: Nicole Kidman in practical magic is my muse — at least for the month of October. Magical, wild and brash with a bad habit for villains and a great haircut – what’s not to love about Gillian Owens? That’s the thing about practical magic. I think the 1998 movie achieved cult status because of the mood and aesthetic of the characters (Sandra Bullock as Sally Owens and her earthy 90s wardrobe!) and its setting (that multi-story house!) Rather than the actual plot because the actual plot…sucks.

And I say that with a lot of love because I love practical magic, and I’ve always done it since its inception when I was in high school. At the time, I was 15 and pretty much a constant customer of the local occult store, interested in all sorts of cosmic things, like astrology, tarot cards and crystals – at a back when it certainly wasn’t cool at all. be interested in such magical things. That is why practical magic was such an iconic movie for me. Here are two beautiful and famous actresses (Bullock and Kidman) doing sorcery that is not only sexy but also practical. After all, it was very convenient to light candles with one breath like Sally does, or to become number one on the school telephone tree (which Gillian does for Sally), or to grow herbs and concoct potions, including deadly belladonna. That’s what witches did, and didn’t we all want to be witches after seeing that movie? Um yes.

That’s why I think we, that is, most millennials like me, like Practical magic. It gives us permission to embrace the “little witch inside of us” and dream of a life of sipping midnight margaritas and selling expensive homemade soaps and shampoos in a small, minimal store that somehow pays the bills (including the property tax for a very large oceanfront home). All the other stuff in the movie is just that — stuff.

A little reminder

Based on the 1995 novel of the same name by Alice Hoffman, practical magic follows sisters Sally and Gillian Owens. From a magical family, they are raised by two eccentric aunts after their parents die from a family curse. As adults, they end up having to call on their powers in unexpected ways when one of their lives hangs in the balance.

My thoughts and observations

Shocks without surprise

Sally and Gillian burying Jimmy (Goran Visnjic), Gillian’s ex-boyfriend, in the garden after poisoning him with said belladonna? It’s slightly interesting, but it really doesn’t pack a punch. I mean, you want him dead anyway, so there’s no huge loss there. And you kinda know that Sally and Gillian will be fine (they’re witches, aren’t they?), so there’s not a ton of suspense either.

The Ghost of Friends’ Past

When Jimmy comes back from the dead as an apparition, it’s almost laughable, especially since he looks a bit like Bill Pullman in caspar. Watching it again, I couldn’t take that part seriously. It was a little weird.

love without logic

Stranger was still Gillian possessed by him. We didn’t really get a full story on how or why this happened, other than, hey, they’re witches and things like that are normal in their world? Then there’s the love subplot involving Detective Hallet (Aidan Quinn) and Sally, which, honestly, I deliver – but their relationship seemed rushed, even though they are true soul mates.

In conclusion, it’s dull but adorable

Overall, I think the movie has some memorable scenes — like the Owens wives drunkenly dancing to “Coconut,” Sally and Gillian sealing their blood bond, and every moment between Dianne Wiest and Stockard Channing as aunts. Having said all that, I don’t think it holds up as a complete movie.

But it is okay! I don’t think we’re watching practical magic for its cinematic prowess but rather for its nostalgia (it also has a killer 90s soundtrack) and the chemistry of its stars, and, of course, the hope that our days could also be filled with magic if we Contents of: “Always throw spilled salt on your left shoulder. Keep rosemary by your garden gate. Plant lavender for good luck. And fall in love whenever you can.

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