How do real witches feel about all this Hollywood hocus-pocus? EW asked Wiccan Phyllis Curott to conjure up some answers.
Witches Practical Magic‘s sororal enchantresses Sandra Bullock and Nicole Kidman Pros ”They capture the real flavor of a love spell,” says Curott. ”It’s a spell to find a soul mate — not just to make someone fall for you. Also, Bullock says, ‘There’s no devil in the craft.’ It’s very important for everyone to realize that.” Con During one spell-casting ritual, a dove is slaughtered. ”They made that up,” says Curott. ”We don’t kill things. Most of us are vegetarians.” Verdict The film was ”powerful and accurate. I got a major rush just because of the aesthetic.”
Rating: 3 witches hats
Witch Sabrina, the Teenage Witch‘s Melissa Joan Hart Pros ”I like Sabrina because she isn’t doing baneful magic,” notes Curott. ”Baneful magic violates our most basic rule: ‘As ye harm none, do what ye will.”’ Cons Curott says Sabrina’s talking cat, Salem, ”is very cynical. He’s really in existential crisis — he’s unhappy being a cat.” Verdict ”I can’t wait to see Sabrina go to college.”
Rating: 4 witches hats
Witches Charmed sisters Shannen Doherty, Alyssa Milano, and Holly Marie Combs Pros Shannen Doherty. ”I’ve known a lot of witches who were a lot like her,” Curott affirms. Cons The sisters stick thorns into a voodoo doll to rid themselves of a troublesome warlock. ”There’s no such thing as a warlock,” says Curott. ”If I hear the word warlock one more time, I’m going to put a hex on Hollywood.” Verdict ”They need a witch on staff…[but] they haven’t offended me. The bad stuff was harmless. Overall, I’m thrilled. It’s another important step.”
Rating: 2 1/2 witches hats