Even though there are a couple of months of summer left, once kids start heading back to school, it just starts to feel like fall.
Although true fall isn’t quite here, this is the time of year when we start drinking pumpkin spice lattes, burning fall-scented candles and getting ready for my personal favorite holiday, Halloween. And with Halloween comes Halloween movies.
There are all kinds of great ghost, vampire and zombie movies out there to get you in the spirit, but somehow, witch movies just seem more fall-like and Halloweeny than all the rest. It doesn’t matter if you like your witches green and warty or svelte and sensual. Either way, witches are a staple of the late-summer and fall months.
Sometimes, though, finding a good witch movie that isn’t too “kiddie” can be hard. Read on to find out our picks for the absolute best adult witch movies of all time.
NOTE: Some of these movies can be pretty scary – so if you are looking for Kid friendly witch movies – click that link you just passed over.
Best Witch Movies for Adults 1980-Present
Beautiful Creatures (2013)
If you can get past the absolutely atrocious southern accents, this is actually a pretty good movie.
Ethan, a bored South Carolina teen who wants nothing more than to get out of his tiny, nothing-ever-happens town, begins dreaming about a beautiful girl he’s never met. When school resumes, the girl is in his class, having just moved there to live with her uncle. Ethan quickly falls for her, but she rebuffs his advances because she knows she’s going to become a witch on her birthday.
Ethan refuses to leave her and gets pulled into a world beyond anything he ever knew existed.
If you’re a fan of modern-day fairy tale retellings, this movie is a must-see.
A handsome, entitled high school student, used to getting everything he wants, treats those less fortunate than him with cruelty and disdain.
At a party, he pulls a Carrie-type prank (minus the bucket of blood) on a social outcast who also happens to be a powerful witch.
She curses him to become as ugly on the outside as he is on the inside, and unless he’s able to find someone to love him despite his horrible appearance, he’ll be forced to live with that appearance forever.
The Craft (1996)
If you were a child of the 90’s, you’ve probably already seen The Craft at least a dozen times. With this movie, though, there’s never a bad time for a re-watch.
Fairuza Balk, then in her prime, perfectly portrays the leader of a coven of teenage witches who gradually turn to evil.
Sarah, played by a gorgeous Robin Tunney, is the new girl in town and the new witch in the coven. As she sees the others becoming evil, she tries to leave, but the coven won’t give her up without a fight.
Seventh Son (2014)
An ancient and very powerful witch is imprisoned in the 1500’s by Gregory, a knight of the Falcons.
The last of his kind, Gregory lives out the rest of his years as a traveling witch hunter, going from town to town, ridding each one of its supernatural threats.
Many years later, the witch escapes her prison, and Gregory must find a way to capture and defeat her once more. He finds a young man named Tom, who’s the seventh son of a seventh son, and asks him to be his apprentice and help him defeat the evil witch once and for all.
Teen Witch (1989)
If you’re looking for a funny, slightly silly witch movie to watch with your older children, give Teen Witch a try.
Louise is a high school student who’s always been a little geeky and not too popular. Despite that, she has a huge crush on the cutest guy in school. She’s never brave enough to act on it until a psychic tells her she’ll become a witch with magical powers on her 16th birthday.
When that happens, she uses her newfound powers to get back at some bullies and snag the guy of her dreams but soon learns happy endings aren’t always as happy as they seem.
Based off the Neil Gaiman book of the same name, Stardust is a beautiful, whimsical story of a young man who goes on a quest to find a fallen star because that’s the only way the girl he loves will agree to marry him.
Things take a turn for the bizarre when he finds the fallen star, and it turns out to be a beautiful young woman instead of a hunk of meteor – a beautiful woman being chased by a witch who wants to eat her heart to stay young forever.
The Witches of Eastwick (1987)
If you’re looking for something that’s both dark and also hilarious, this is the witch movie for you.
Three friends, played by Cher, Michelle Pfeiffer and Susan Sarandon, become bored with small-town life and are dissatisfied with their love lives.
Eventually, a handsome man named Daryl comes to town and tells them they’re witches. They all move in with him and begin exploring their powers, but they soon begin to suspect Daryl isn’t being as honest with them as they thought.
Oz the Great and Powerful (2013)
This stunningly gorgeous movie acts somewhat as an origin story for Oz, the wizard in the Wizard of Oz books/movies.
It features an all-star cast including James Franco as Oz (formerly Oscar Diggs, a traveling magician and con artist), Michelle Williams as Glinda the Good, Rachel Weisz as Evanora, Mila Kunis as Theodora and Zach Braff as Finley the winged monkey.
The story is good; the graphics and visuals are even better. Whether you’re in it for the story, the cast or simply the beauty of watching it, this movie won’t disappoint.
Hocus Pocus (1993)
When it comes to movies about witches, this one is my personal favorite. It has everything you need for a great witch movie: Bette Midler with some excellently applied lipstick, a disbelieving virgin who makes a huge mistake, a cursed black cat who can talk, a zombie with really bad breath and a killer rendition of “I Put a Spell on You.”
In it, Max (who doesn’t believe in the supernatural) tries to impress a girl and accidentally releases three, 300-year-old witches back into the world.
He, the girl, his little sister and Binx (the talking cat) must then rush to send them back to the grave before they suck the lives out of all the children in Salem.
Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters (2013)
This movie is set over a decade after the well-known events of the Hansel and Gretel fairy tale we all know.
The two siblings are now grown and have become supernatural bounty hunters, thanks in large part to their disturbing childhood.
However, an evil like they’ve never faced before is about to rise up, forcing the two siblings to face their dark pasts.
Witching & Bitching (2013)
Although this movie does have enough scary and gory stuff in it to be considered a horror movie, it’s also freaking hilarious.
In a true twist of karma, a group of armed robbers, thinking they’ve found a safe place to hide, hole up in a small, out-of-the-way village. Just as they think they’re safe, they find out the village is full of witches.
Despite the gore and the bloody splatter – of which there is plenty – the jokes and plot of this movie will keep you laughing until the end. Fans of Shaun of the Dead are sure to love this one.
This movie combines all the best of late-80’s thrillers: violence, a bit of horror, spontaneous combustion, full-frontal nudity, a little romance and a whole lot of drama.
In it, a successful L.A. lawyer, Jeff, rescues a beautiful woman, Miranda, from what he thinks is an abusive relationship. He moves her into his house and begins to fall for her.
Before long, though, Jeff finds out that Miranda wasn’t fleeing a bad boyfriend but a coven of witches, and they’re still after her.
The Lords of Salem (2012)
If you’re a Rob Zombie/House of 1,000 Corpses fan, you’ll definitely dig this flick about witches.
While the reviews for this movie were honestly pretty terrible, it’s not a bad movie if you already know to expect traditional Rob Zombie gore and goofiness going into it.
A beautiful radio DJ receives a strange record. After playing it, she begins having vivid, awful dreams about the Salem witch trials.
The movie does end with a whole lot of craziness though, so be prepared for weird.
In this Canadian-American horror film, a family begins to regret its decision to relocate after they move into a new home.
The home is directly on top of land where a powerful witch was executed, and the family soon realizes the witch may not be as dead as they thought.
At the very least, something of her spirit lives on and is absolutely terrorizing the family any time they’re inside the house.
Can they get rid of the witch’s spirit before it kills them all, or will they have to flee from their new home and their new lives?
The Last Witch Hunter (2015)
When you think of witches, you probably don’t think of Vin Diesel, but that’s exactly who stars in this action/fantasy drama from 2015.
Diesel plays Kaulder, a centuries-old knight from an ancient order, who destroyed the Witch Queen, the most powerful witch the world has ever known.
In the process, she cursed him with immortality, cheating him out of the death that would have reunited him with his wife and child.
When the Witch Queen rises again, Kaulder must stop her once more.
Big Fish (2003)
Although not a traditional “witch movie,” it does have a witch in it, and she plays a large part in setting the tone for the whole movie. Plus, it’s one of my all-time favorites.
A son – angry with his dying father for never telling him a story about his past that was “true” – tries to find out who his dad really is behind all the tall tales and fanciful stories, only to find out that his dad’s stories might not have been so far-fetched after all.
A family gathers after the death of their grandmother, and things quickly take a turn for the worst.
Something is haunting the family, and it’s setting everyone’s nerves on end. That something turns out to be a coven of evil witches, and they’re 100% terrifying.
Full of spine-tingling chills and plenty of jump scares, this movie is truly scary. The creepy, yet perfect, musical score just adds to the film’s overall tension and sense of unease.
Technically, I cheated a little here, but I feel like we need at least one warlock movie on the list too.
In this late-80’s cult classic, a warlock is captured by a witch hunter. Before the witch hunter can put him to death, the warlock finds a way to jump into the future, landing in the 1980’s.
He picks up where he left off, planning to destroy the whole world. The witch hunter, who followed him into the future, is determined to stop him but is having a hard time adjusting to life in the future.
Practical Magic (1998)
This movie is half romantic comedy, half fantasy and 100% brilliant. Sandra Bullock and Nicole Kidman star as Sally and Gillian, two sisters who are witches.
The problem is that they’re witches under a curse: Every time they fall in love with a man, he’s destined to die.
Sally’s husband dies tragically, leaving her alone with their two daughters. In an effort to escape her abusive lover, Gillian runs home to live with Sally. Sally, trying to help, accidentally poisons and kills the man Gillian was fleeing.
The movie is hilarious, thrilling and poignant in turn, which is why it’s become such an underground hit.
The Blair Witch Project (1999)
This film was the blockbuster of the late-90s and spawned several other movies shot in the same, faux-documentary style.
Supposedly based on a true story, it’s about three film students who go hiking in woods purported to be haunted by a witch.
They spend the night in the woods and continuously film what happens as the Blair Witch haunts and attacks them after the sun goes down.
The shaky, hand-filmed look and the documentary style make the film seem like a true account, and that’s what makes it so scary.
If you like your witches more cheesy than scary, this movie adaptation of the popular show is the perfect choice.
Starring Will Ferrell and Nicole Kidman, it was bound to be nuts, and the movie doesn’t disappoint. Although it was a total flop at the box office, Kidman’s portrayal of a quirky Samantha and Ferrell’s somewhat clueless Darrin keep you laughing throughout the whole movie.
Seeing as they received a Raspberry Award for “Worst On-Screen Couple,” you’ll laugh at them more than you laugh with them.
The Crucible (1996)
If you’re looking for a movie that’s a little more truth than fiction this fall, check out The Crucible with Winona Ryder and Daniel Day-Lewis.
Although it isn’t a true story, it is a stunningly realistic depiction of what life was like for some women during the infamous Salem Witch Trials.
The main plot revolves around a jilted lover (Ryder) falsely accusing her lover’s wife of witchcraft in retribution, setting things in motion that can’t easily be undone.
Eve’s Bayou (1997)
A rather dark movie that’s definitely not suitable for children, Eve’s Bayou follows the story of ten-year-old Eve, who lives with her family in 1960’s Louisiana.
After witnessing her father repeatedly cheating on her mother, she visits a voodoo witch hoping to get a voodoo doll she can use to keep her father from cheating.
The witch, however, tells Eve she’s cursed her father instead. Eve rushes to save him, but can she get to him in time?
Maleficent (2014) & Maleficent: Mistress of Evil (2019)
These two movies take the traditional tale of Sleeping Beauty and turn them upside down by telling them from the point of view of the “evil” witch Maleficent, who really isn’t as evil as we’ve always been told.
The imagery in the movies is beautiful, and Angelina Jolie makes a stunning, sharp-cheeked, fairy-born Maleficent.
The Woods (2006)
Although this movie is rated R, the rating has more to do with the violence, the jump scares and the other terrifying scenes than with nudity or drug or alcohol use, none of which appear in the film.
Troubled teen Heather gets sent to an all-girls school to keep her out of trouble, but things quickly turn dark when she realizes the school and the woods that surround it hold a dark mystery and some even darker witches.
It’s a great witch movie with some genuinely scary parts to it. Plus, it features the master of horror, Bruce Campbell.
Pumpkinhead is one of the grossest looking, yet not-super-scary, movie monsters out there.
Even so, the movies are worth watching, especially if you love disgusting, B-movie type horror.
A powerful witch is approached by a man (Ed) wanting vengeance for his son, who was killed by a group of teenagers. The witch brings Pumpkinhead to life to enact the father’s vengeance upon the teens.
Once he’s accomplished his task, though, Pumpkinhead doesn’t simply die, and the witch figures out that the only way to stop Pumpkinhead is to kill Ed as well.
Witches’ Brew (1980)
Billed as a comedy/horror film, this movie is really more comedy than horror.
It’s actually based off the same novel that Night of the Eagle (see below) is based off of, but whereas NotE is pretty scary, this one is more silly.
A group of wives begin practicing witchcraft in order to help their husbands “get ahead.” One husband, Joshua, doesn’t think his wife’s witchcraft is having any effect and tells her to give it up. She does, and things begin going badly for Joshua in a hurry.
The Love Witch (2016)
Elaine, the Love Witch, uses “sex magic” and “love magic” on men to get them to love her, and sometimes, those spells go awry and kill the men afterwards.
Although listed as a comedy/horror tragedy, this movie, which wasn’t well-received by critics, is more cheesy and comedic than anything.
Despite the cheese, it’s actually quite a fun watch. Whether you watch it for the story, because it’s filmed to look exactly like a movie from the 1960’s or because it’s a feminist-driven movie starring gorgeous women, you’ll either passionately love it or (just as passionately) hate it.
Sleepy Hollow (1999)
This reimagining of the popular story by Washington Irving, The Legend of Sleepy Hollow, stars Johnny Depp as Ichabod Crane, Christina Ricci as Katrina Van Tassel and Miranda Richardson as a vengeful witch.
The witch sets a headless horseman loose on the town in order to kill people who could potentially bare witness to a new will written by a man who had initially left his entire estate to her new husband.
Ichabod must find the horseman’s master and stop her before the horseman kills again.
The Witch (2015)
In this harrowing tale, a farmer, his wife and five children are cast out of their village because of a difference in religious beliefs.
They move to live by themselves on a small plot of land, but then awful things begin happening that make the family think they may be cursed.
As more and more evil befalls the devout family, they have to start wondering if there really is a curse on them, and if so, which one of them cast it?
The Autopsy of Jane Doe (2016)
Although this movie isn’t that well-known, it actually has great ratings, scoring a whopping 87% on RottenTomatoes.
It also happens to be one of the few witch movies that actually gives me the literal creeps.
A Jane Doe is found at the site of a multiple homicide and is brought to two coroners to find out how she died.
While they examine her, strange things start to happen, and over time, they start to wonder if those strange things aren’t coming from the corpse itself.
This movie will absolutely give you the chills, possibly even nightmares, but it’s 100% worth it.
5ive Girls (2006)
Although it’s true you won’t find this movie topping many “Best of” lists, I had to include it here because it’s just so campy and over-the-top, and I love it despite it’s mostly horrible reviews.
The film stars one of my personal favorites, Ron Perlman, as a Catholic priest trying to help five Catholic school girls who find out they’ve been given magical powers in order to defeat a deadly demon who’s trying to overtake the school.
It’s campy, cheesy and sometimes corny, but it’s oddly great as well.
Best “Old-School” Witch Movies for Adults
Season of the Witch (1972)
One of Romero’s lesser-known films, this Season of the Witch is not to be confused with the 2011 version.
This one contains all kinds of NSFW material. In fact, at its original release, it underwent several edits to turn it into something entirely different than it was meant to be.
That version of the movie was designated as soft-core pornography, but after it was re-released in its original form, it actually was not that bad.
It’s about a disenchanted housewife who meets a witch and begins practicing witchcraft herself.
Although the 2018 version of this movie is also quite good, the original version from 1977 is the best.
In it, American dancer Suzy moves to Germany to be part of a prestigious ballet school. When weird, horrible things start to happen, she soon finds out that things at the school aren’t exactly as they seem.
In fact, the school is run by a powerful coven of evil witches, and by the time Suzy realizes it, she may be in too deep.
The movie contains graphic violence and several legitimately scary scenes, so it’s definitely not for the whole family.
Rosemary’s Baby (1968)
This classic from the late-60’s is not for the faint of heart.
In it, Rosemary and her husband, Guy, move into a nice new apartment with a shady past. After finding out she’s pregnant, Rosemary is at first delighted by the news.
She then becomes increasingly erratic and convinced that her neighbors are devil-worshiping witches who want to steal her baby.
The movie becomes darker and more desperate as Rosemary rushes to find someone who’ll believe and help her and is continually referred back into the care of her husband, who refuses to believe anything is wrong.
The City of the Dead (1960)
Starring an extremely young Sir Christopher Lee, this horror movie from the 60’s is about a witch and her partner, who both sold their souls to Lucifer in exchange for eternal life.
Afterwards, she’s burned at the stake, but because of her deal, she doesn’t die. Every year thereafter, she must sacrifice two virgins a year to maintain her deal with the devil.
One year, though, the two sacrifice the wrong virgin, and her fiance comes looking for her.
Released in 1922, this Swedish film was way ahead of its time and is one of the first known “fictional documentaries.”
It traces the origin and evolution of witchcraft, medieval witch hunts and the mistreatment of women falsely accused of practicing witchcraft and devilry.
U.S. viewers were actually banned from watching the movie for many years because of its shocking content and depictions of the torture of women.
That alone should tell you it’s a witch movie worth watching.
I Married a Witch (1942)
If you prefer romantic comedies to horror flicks, this movie from the 40’s might just be the perfect witch movie for you.
This movie is actually part of the main inspiration for Bewitched – the popular television show, not the movie remake.
It follows the story of Jennifer, a Salem witch burned at the stake in the 1600’s, who comes back to life in the 1940’s and falls in love with the descendant of a family she, herself, had cursed centuries before.
Witchfinder General (1968)
Starring the magnificent Vincent Price, Witchfinder General tells the fictional story of the real man named Matthew Hopkins, an English lawyer who actually claimed to be England’s Witch Finder General.
Although the exploits carried out in this film are false, the witch hunting and trials are actually things Hopkins claimed to have done while alive.
Bell, Book and Candle (1958)
Based off the popular Broadway play of the same name, Bell, Book and Candle is a late-50’s film about a witch living in Greenwich Village.
She meets a popular publisher and decides to cast a love spell on him to make him love her just so she can steal him away from her old rival.
The only problem is that she actually starts to fall for him, and if she falls in love, she has to give up her magical powers.
If you like a little romance and silliness in your witch movies, this is the flick for you.
Black Sunday (1960)
It’s true that the English dub of this Italian film isn’t the best dub-work I’ve ever seen done. However, if you can get past that little inconvenience, this black and white flick is actually a great movie.
It puts you in mind of old-school George Romero movies with a little Nosferatu thrown in for good measure.
It was so disturbing that it was largely censored in most countries and banned completely in the U.K. In it, a witch is killed by her brother. She comes back 200 years later intent on getting her revenge on the world.
Night of the Eagle (1962)
Originally released under this title in Britain, this movie was re-released in the U.S. under the name Burn, Witch, Burn!
It’s a stereotypical, old-school horror film about a professor of psychology who learns that his wife has begun to dabble in witchcraft.
This is no Bewitched precursor though; in this movie, the man and wife don’t “make it work” and experience cute little magical mishaps. Instead, this movie contains an accusation of rape, a trance-induced knife attack and a large stone eagle coming to life and bent on killing.
This is a dark movie, but if you like your witches dark, you’ll love it.
Virgin Witch (1972)
This is another film on the list that isn’t super well-known.
In it, a young woman auditions for a spot within a modeling agency, but the modeling agency is actually a powerful coven of witches. (If you’re getting Suspira vibes here, you’re not far off the mark.) The difference between this movie and Suspira – other than the fact that this one is pretty cheesy, whereas Suspira is actually excellent – is that this one has a lot more nudity and gratuitous sex scenes.
It’s certainly not for the whole family. It does have a pretty big cult following though.
Mark of the Devil (1970)
This German horror film is another movie not for the easily scared, disturbed or offended. It’s somewhat of a follow-up to Witchfinder General and is also about a witch hunter.
In this one, though, the witch hunter starts to see the fraudulence of the witch trials and wants to quit.
This movie is deeply dark and contains violent, sadistic images of women being stripped naked and tortured, nuns being raped, tongues being ripped out of mouths and more.
When it premiered in theaters, patrons were given free vomit bags upon entering the theater. Do not watch it if you’re not ready to be seriously disturbed.
Baron Blood (1972)
In this old-school, Italian horror flick, a college student goes to stay at his family’s ancestral home in Austria and finds out that his great-grandfather was a sadistic murderer known as Baron Blood.
The young man reads an incantation aloud and accidentally brings Baron Blood back to life, allowing him free reign to start torturing and murdering again.
It’s a pretty good flick, and despite being a horror movie, the PG-rating keeps it from being too scary or gory.