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The Witches (4/10) Movie CLIP - Maximum Results! (1990) HD
The Witches (4/10) Movie CLIP - Maximum Results! (1990) HD
Published: 2015/01/05
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The Witches (1/10) Movie CLIP - Ordinary Witches (1990) HD
The Witches (1/10) Movie CLIP - Ordinary Witches (1990) HD
Published: 2014/12/24
Channel: Movieclips
The Witches (1990) Official Trailer #1 - Anjelica Huston Family Horror Movie
The Witches (1990) Official Trailer #1 - Anjelica Huston Family Horror Movie
Published: 2014/11/24
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the witches (1990)- ending !! HD
the witches (1990)- ending !! HD
Published: 2017/03/26
Channel: columbia fan
The Witches (1990 )
The Witches (1990 )
Published: 2016/04/01
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The Witches (10/10) Movie CLIP - Pest Control (1990) HD
The Witches (10/10) Movie CLIP - Pest Control (1990) HD
Published: 2015/01/05
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The Witches (1990) - The story of Erica...
The Witches (1990) - The story of Erica...
Published: 2016/02/06
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The Witches (2/10) Movie CLIP - Little Boys Love Snakes (1990) HD
The Witches (2/10) Movie CLIP - Little Boys Love Snakes (1990) HD
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The Witches (8/10) Movie CLIP - Good Lord (1990) HD
The Witches (8/10) Movie CLIP - Good Lord (1990) HD
Published: 2015/01/05
Channel: Movieclips
The Witches (1990) Full Movie
The Witches (1990) Full Movie
Published: 2017/05/05
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The Witches (1990) Full Movie
The Witches (1990) Full Movie
Published: 2016/11/09
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The Witches (3/10) Movie CLIP - I Cannot Permit Mice (1990) HD
The Witches (3/10) Movie CLIP - I Cannot Permit Mice (1990) HD
Published: 2014/12/24
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The Witches (6/10) Movie CLIP - It Must Be Exterminated! (1990) HD
The Witches (6/10) Movie CLIP - It Must Be Exterminated! (1990) HD
Published: 2014/12/24
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the witches (1990)- the high witch sees erica SCENE!!
the witches (1990)- the high witch sees erica SCENE!!
Published: 2017/03/26
Channel: columbia fan
The Witches (1990)  (dutch subtitles)
The Witches (1990) (dutch subtitles)
Published: 2015/01/18
Channel: John Looijen
The Witches Scary Scene
The Witches Scary Scene
Published: 2009/06/09
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The Witches (5/10) Movie CLIP - Hello Little Bruno (1990) HD
The Witches (5/10) Movie CLIP - Hello Little Bruno (1990) HD
Published: 2015/01/05
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The Witches (Enhanced) Turn Luke Into A Mouse 1990 Anjelica Huston
The Witches (Enhanced) Turn Luke Into A Mouse 1990 Anjelica Huston
Published: 2011/04/04
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The Witches (9/10) Movie CLIP - Hello, Dad! (1990) HD
The Witches (9/10) Movie CLIP - Hello, Dad! (1990) HD
Published: 2014/12/31
Channel: Movieclips
The Witches Trailer "20th Year Anniversary"
The Witches Trailer "20th Year Anniversary"
Published: 2010/01/26
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The Witches (7/10) Movie CLIP - Chase the Baby (1990) HD
The Witches (7/10) Movie CLIP - Chase the Baby (1990) HD
Published: 2014/12/29
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The Witches 1990 Movie Mash-Up
The Witches 1990 Movie Mash-Up
Published: 2010/01/22
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The Witches (1990) Movie - Adventure Comedy Family film
The Witches (1990) Movie - Adventure Comedy Family film
Published: 2017/10/07
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The Witches (1990) Theory
The Witches (1990) Theory
Published: 2016/11/30
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The Witches (1990)
The Witches (1990)
Published: 2012/09/13
Channel: Aura Archange Maudit
The Witches Trailer 1990 (VHS Capture)
The Witches Trailer 1990 (VHS Capture)
Published: 2016/07/15
Channel: 2ombieboy's VHS Vault
the Witches
the Witches
Published: 2009/03/15
Channel: AEproductions89
Anjelica Huston - Grand High Witch (Best moments 4)
Anjelica Huston - Grand High Witch (Best moments 4)
Published: 2010/03/07
Channel: socialretard28
The Witches (1990) Movie Review | Horrorthon
The Witches (1990) Movie Review | Horrorthon
Published: 2017/10/30
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Silicone Mask - The Grand High Witch (The Witches 1990 Anjelica Huston)
Silicone Mask - The Grand High Witch (The Witches 1990 Anjelica Huston)
Published: 2010/11/22
Channel: artnouveauiswar
The Witches 1990 Movie Review - Discussion
The Witches 1990 Movie Review - Discussion
Published: 2016/11/01
Channel: Retro Nerd Girl
Life Size Silicone Anjelica Huston Celebrity Figure - The Witches 1990 - Wax Museum
Life Size Silicone Anjelica Huston Celebrity Figure - The Witches 1990 - Wax Museum
Published: 2011/01/23
Channel: artnouveauiswar
The Witches Anjelica Huston Mistake # 3 /6 (French)
The Witches Anjelica Huston Mistake # 3 /6 (French)
Published: 2009/09/23
Channel: billywool
The Witches (1990) Movie Review
The Witches (1990) Movie Review
Published: 2016/11/10
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The Woman In Black - The Witches (1990)
The Woman In Black - The Witches (1990)
Published: 2013/12/29
Channel: BBChugs2
The child is no longer a child (Witches 1990)
The child is no longer a child (Witches 1990)
Published: 2013/05/26
Channel: MusicWithLyrics
The Witches (1990) FuLL MoViE
The Witches (1990) FuLL MoViE
Published: 2017/05/11
Channel: Satrio laksonoo
The Witches (1990) mouse pants scene
The Witches (1990) mouse pants scene
Published: 2008/06/28
Channel: cbfundamental
Top 10 Movie Witches
Top 10 Movie Witches
Published: 2013/04/27
Channel: WatchMojo.com
Bernard Rose on THE WITCHES
Bernard Rose on THE WITCHES
Published: 2017/01/02
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The Witches 1990 Anjelica Huston Horror Recut Trailer
The Witches 1990 Anjelica Huston Horror Recut Trailer
Published: 2010/05/30
Channel: artnouveauiswar
THE WITCHES (1990) Movie Review
THE WITCHES (1990) Movie Review
Published: 2015/10/23
Channel: hithisisderek237
The Witches (1990) 1 1
The Witches (1990) 1 1
Published: 2017/10/30
Channel: johny west
The Witches (1990)
The Witches (1990)
Published: 2017/04/08
Channel: The Witches Full Movie 1990
The Witches - Bruno
The Witches - Bruno's mouse transformation
Published: 2015/12/01
Channel: jonnette 89
The Witches Anjelica Huston Song
The Witches Anjelica Huston Song
Published: 2009/07/09
Channel: billywool
The Witches Trailer
The Witches Trailer
Published: 2009/11/13
Channel: billywool
The Witches FULL
The Witches FULL'M.o.V.i.e'1990'HD''
Published: 2017/11/24
Channel: grameh balong
The Witches (1990): fan dub
The Witches (1990): fan dub
Published: 2014/05/25
Channel: Alex C
The Witches (1990) Movie ★★★
The Witches (1990) Movie ★★★
Published: 2017/08/06
Channel: The Witches (1990) Full Movie
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WIKIPEDIA ARTICLE

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The Witches
Witches poster.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed by Nicolas Roeg
Produced by
Screenplay by Allan Scott
Based on The Witches
by Roald Dahl
Starring
Music by Stanley Myers
Cinematography Harvey Harrison
Edited by Tony Lawson
Production
companies
Distributed by Warner Bros.
Release date
  • 25 May 1990 (1990-05-25) (United Kingdom)
  • 24 August 1990 (1990-08-24) (United States)
Running time
91 minutes[1]
Country United Kingdom
United States
Language English
Box office $15.3 million[2]

The Witches is a 1990 British/American dark fantasy horror-comedy film based on the children's novel of the same title by Roald Dahl. It was directed by Nicolas Roeg and produced by The Jim Henson Company for Lorimar Film Entertainment and Warner Bros., starring Anjelica Huston, Mai Zetterling, Rowan Atkinson, and Jasen Fisher. It is the last theatrical film to be produced by Lorimar before the company shut down 3 years later in 1993.

As in the novel, the story fantasises witches who masquerade as ordinary women and kill children, but are foiled and exterminated by a boy and his grandmother after the boy is turned into a mouse. The film was very well received by critics, but performed poorly at the box office and was also hated by Roald Dahl because of its ending differing from the book.

Plot[edit]

During a vacation with his grandmother Helga (Mai Zetterling) in Norway, Luke Eveshim (Jasen Fisher) is told stories about "real" witches, female demons with a genocidal hatred for children, all of whom emit an odor obnoxious to witches. Helga tells him that her childhood friend was taken and cursed to spend the rest of her life trapped inside a painting. After Luke's parents are accidentally killed, Helga becomes Luke's legal guardian and they move to England. While building a treehouse, Luke is accosted by a witch, though he sees through her ruse and avoids his potential death, hiding at the top of the tree. On Luke's 9th birthday, Helga falls ill with her diabetes. Her doctor advises them to spend the summer by the sea.

They stay at a seaside resort, where Luke meets and befriends a gluttonous but friendly boy named, Bruno Jenkins (Charlie Potter), while getting on the bad side of the hotel manager, Mr. Stringer (Rowan Atkinson), after his pet mice frighten a maid who is having an affair with the manager. Also staying at the hotel are a convention load of witches, masquerading as the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children, with the Grand High Witch (Anjelica Huston), the German-accented leader of the world's witches, attending their annual meeting.

Luke inadvertently discovers the witches while playing with his pet mice inside the ballroom, where the witches hold their meeting. The Grand High Witch unveils her latest weapon: a formula to turn children into mice, which they will use on confectionery products in sweet shops and candy stores to be opened using money provided by the Grand High Witch. Bruno is lured into the room, having already been given chocolate laced with the formula a couple of hours earlier. He turns into a mouse and flees. Luke attempts to escape but is also captured and turned into a mouse, though he avoids being squashed. He finds Bruno and reunites with Helga who recovered while Luke was adventuring.

Luke devises a plan to kill the witches by sneaking into the Grand High Witch's room to steal a bottle of the formula. Luke manages to drop the bottle into a pot of cress soup destined for the witches' dinner tables. Mr. Jenkins (Bill Paterson) also orders the soup, though Helga stops him from consuming it at the last minute.

As the witches enter the dining room, the Grand High Witch's former assistant Miss Irvine (Jane Horrocks) quits working with the witches, and gets spared from the massacre that is about to happen. The formula turns all the witches into mice, just after Bruno speaks up to tell his father that he is really a mouse. The staff and hotel guests join in killing the mice, unknowingly ridding England of its witches, as Helga returns Bruno to his parents. The Grand High Witch is spotted by Helga, who traps her under a water jug, enabling Mr. Stringer to dispatch her with a meat cleaver.

Luke and Helga return to their home, where they are delivered the Grand High Witch's trunk full of money and an address book of all witches in the USA. Luke (who had secretly readdressed the trunk at the resort) suggests that they might use it to eradicate the world's witches once and for all. That night, Miss Irvine pays a visit to the house and uses her power to return Luke to his human body and return his pet mice, along with his glasses, before leaving to repeat the process with Bruno.

Cast[edit]

Puppeteers[edit]

The following people did special puppeteer work in this film:

Production[edit]

The Witches based on the book of the same name by British author Roald Dahl.[3] It was the final film that Jim Henson personally worked on before his death, the final theatrical film produced by Lorimar Productions, and the last film made based on Dahl's material before his death (both Henson and Dahl died that year).

The whole section at the start of the film (until they move to the United Kingdom) was shot in Bergen in Norway. Much of the film was shot on location in the Headland Hotel[4] (which was named "Hotel Excelsior" in the film, though it was called the "Hotel Magnificent" in the book) situated on the coast in Newquay, Cornwall (Bournemouth in the book). Roald Dahl originally wanted Cher to play the role of the Grand High Witch, but she was unavailable at the time because the actress was filming Mermaids. Eartha Kitt, Fiona Fullerton, Geneviève Bujold, Starr Andreeff, Olivia Hussey, Sigourney Weaver, Frances Conroy, and Liza Minnelli were all at some point considered for the part of The Grand High Witch prior to Anjelica Huston’s casting. Huston’s casting later satisfied Dahl.

Release[edit]

The movie was slated to be distributed by Lorimar but when the company dissolved their theatrical distribution operation, it wound up sitting on the shelf for more than a year after filming was completed.[5] The movie premiered on 25 May 1990, in London and was scheduled to open the same day in the United States,[5] but following Florida test screenings earlier that year Warner Bros. delayed the American release until August.[5] The film took in $10,360,553 in the United States and 266,782 in Germany.

Home media[edit]

Warner Home Video first released the film on VHS in 1991. The second release (and first re-release) was on VHS and for the first time on DVD in 1999. Both versions (and any TV screenings) use the original open matte negative of the film, instead of matting it down to 1.85:1 (or 1.66:1). The film was released in the Netherlands in 2009, with this DVD shown in its theatrical aspect ratio of 1.85:1.

Soundtrack[edit]

The film contains an orchestral score composed by Stanley Myers. To date, a soundtrack CD has not been released, and the entire score remains obscure. Throughout the score, the Dies Irae appears, highly reminiscent of Berlioz's Symphony Fantastique Mvt. V, "The Witches Sabbath."

Reception[edit]

The Witches was well received by critics and audiences alike, but performed poorly at the box office.[6] The film holds a rare 100% in the film critics site Rotten Tomatoes, based on reviews from 33 critics with an average rating of 7.7/10.[7] Roger Ebert gave the film 3 out of 4 stars, calling the film "an intriguing movie, ambitious and inventive, and almost worth seeing just for Anjelica Huston's obvious delight in playing a completely uncompromised villainess."[8] Roald Dahl himself regarded the film as "utterly appalling" because of the ending that contrasted with the book.[9]

Awards[edit]

Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films (1991)
BAFTA Awards (1991)
Boston Society of Film Critics Awards (1991)
Fantasporto (1991)
  • Nominated – International Fantasy Film Award for Best Film (Nicolas Roeg)
Hugo Awards (1991)
Los Angeles Film Critics Association Awards (1990)
National Society of Film Critics Awards (1990)

Planned remake[edit]

In 2017, Guillermo del Toro and Alfonso Cuarón expressed interest in making a remake of The Witches starring Jennifer Lopez.[10]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "The Witches (PG) (CUT)". British Board of Film Classification. 4 May 1990. Retrieved 11 September 2016. 
  2. ^ "The Witches (1990)". The Numbers. Retrieved 10 April 2017. 
  3. ^ "Bewitched, Bothered, Buried Under Latex". The Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 18 October 2010. 
  4. ^ "The Headland Hotel". The Headland Hotel. Retrieved 24 October 2012. 
  5. ^ a b c "The Witches: Warner Bros takes Jim Henson's puppet film swan song off the shelf". Cinefantastique. 21: 22. September 1990. 
  6. ^ "WEEKEND BOX OFFICE : 'Darkman' Shines Among New Releases". The Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2 January 2011. 
  7. ^ "The Witches at Rotten Tomatoes". Rottentomatoes.com. 
  8. ^ Doan, Brian. "Roger Ebert The Witches review". Rogerebert.com. 
  9. ^ Bishop, Tom (11 July 2005). "Entertainment | Willy Wonka's everlasting film plot". BBC News. 
  10. ^ Woerner, Meredith. "Guillermo Del Toro Dances With Roald Dahl's Witches". Io9.gizmodo.com. Retrieved 23 September 2017. 

External links[edit]

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