Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Entertainment Weekly Names the Movie's Top Five Magicians!

Originally uploaded by Heidi Meeley.
I just read my copy of this week's Entertainment Weekly. On the sidebar of an article about the new movie The Prestige, was a list of the top five movie magicians. They are as follows, with a bit of my editorializing.

5. Merlin: I love the movie Excalibur, so this was a sure bet for me. Merlin was portrayed as more of a shaman then a classical magician, and to witness his rise, fall, and rise was astounding. I can watch this movie over and over again, so I agree with this choice.

4. Gandalf: Sir Ian McKellan brought the essence of the Lord of the Rings character to life in the big screen adaptation. I love the grace and simplicity that Sir Ian used to portray such a powerful character.

3. Aldus Dumbledore: As a huge fan of the Harry Potter books, it is sometimes hard for me to see Dumbledore portrayed on screen. Richard Harris came close, and Michael Gambon gives a good attempt, but the actors haven't surpassed the picture I have in my head of this great wizard.

2. The Wicked Witch of the West/East: Man, I had nightmares for years from this old girl! Every holiday season we would watch the Wizard of Oz, and each time the spot-on portrayal by Margaret Hamilton had me checking under my bed. My money is on the Wicked Witch.

1. Yoda: I didn't see that coming. I love it, but I had never really thought of Yoda as a magic man until Entertainment Weekly broached the subject. Powerful yes, magic… well, I have got to think about that. I always saw the Force as more organic then mystical, so that is quite a quandary.

One of the reasons I subscribe to Entertainment Weekly is that I love the great sidebars and notes that they come up with. It isn't just about excellent entertainment coverage with a minimum of gossip; it's about the little touches.

What are your thoughts?


Anonymous said...

EW is a magazine I really enjoy too. It stays away from most of the gossip (which is why I can't stand People) and has interesting articles. I also like it talks about everything from movies to tv to books to comics to just about anything that could be considered entertaintment.

Anonymous said...

Stupid grown-up realization, watching the Wizard of Oz with my kids a couple of years ago.

WWotW: I'm melting! I'm melting!

Kid: What does "melting" mean?

Me: Well, melting is when you raise the temperature of . . . Just a second! She's not melting! She's DISSOLVING!

Reel Fanatic said...

I just love EW's lists ... I would have gone with Gandalf as No. 1, but that's just a quibble

Carl said...

Welp, Merlin would have to be number 1 to me, he represents so much. The end of paganism and the beginning of "The Age of Man" as he says. And Williamson is the perfect Merlin, witty, sharp and at times acidic and scary...

Gandalf would have to be number 2, though McKellan simply *IS* Gandalf and it was like watching the book come to life on the screen.

The rest, Harris's Dumbledor is good but still not as good as the books and Gambon is okay.

The Wicked Witch? Defeated by a lil'farm girl from Kansas? Pah, some magician.

Yoda? A magician? Seems like that should be a trick question part of the article, which one of these things does not belong? Space Fantasy, Jedi Knight. Powers of the mind and their religious faith, no spell-casting or anything like that involved...

Heidi Meeley said...

John- I really enjoy EW. I have had a subscription for about five years, and it very rarely disapoints. I agree with you about the reasons it is good.

Having gratuitous but cool lists just makes it better!

Heidi Meeley said...

Ragtime- You are totally right. I never thought about it like that.


The old girl really does kinda dissolve, doesn't she?

Thank you for pointing that out!

BTW, what did your kids think of Wizard of Oz?

Heidi Meeley said...

Reel Fanatic- EW's lists are the best. There is always humor and logic combined into a tasty snack.

Gandalf is definitely top five material. It is a toss up for me between Merlin, Wicked Witch, and he for the top spot.

Heidi Meeley said...

Carl- I love your post on this! Isn't it great to have a thought-provoking and fun list like this to compare?

I do tend to disagree about the witch- I think Dorothy had some serious mojo going on there, and farm girls do tend to be quite tough!

Otherwise, I agree pretty closely with you!

Take care!

Carl said...

Welllllp, I do love Dorothy and she did have something going on, lots of good help, butttttttttt... I am originally a Kentucky farm boy. I'm afraid the Wicked Witch would have gotten a trusty .45 from Gladys, not a bucket of water, ho ho!

Anonymous said...

BTW, what did your kids think of Wizard of Oz?

Each girl went through a phase of its being their favorite movie at about age 2-3. Then they sort of drifted away until the next girl "discovered" it at the same age, and then it would become their favorite movie again.

Heidi Meeley said...

Carl, that is probably how it would have went down on my dad's farm as well.

Too funny!

Heidi Meeley said...

Ragtime- that is so interesting! It seems like Wizard of Oz is such a classic, well made film that it can re-engage our love for it.

I am really glad to see your daughters carrying on the tradition, as I am sure their children will as well.

That is wonderful!