I’m pretty sure I have heard of Practical Magic for quite a number of years now. When I saw the movie poster, it looked like I had seen it before. I had wanted to watch it around Halloween, but couldn’t find a streaming service that carried it. I recently signed up for HBO Max, and sure enough it was on the service.
The movie is about the Owens family, a long line of family witches. The ancestor of the family, Maria Owens was almost executed during the days of a Puritan Massachusetts. When her lover doesn’t come to her rescue, she curses all female descendants to have their boyfriend/husband’s die of unexpected causes if they fall in love too deeply.
The film mainly focuses on two sisters, Gillian and Sally Owens. Sally is the one who fell in love and started a family. But she becomes a widow, and that brings her back to the house of her aunts, who raised her and taught her some magic. Both sisters reunite but shortly after, an ex-boyfriend tries to kidnap and hurt them both. Sally accidentally poisons him too much, and they bury him in the family yard.
A police investigator shortly arrives later to ask questions about the missing man. Sally tries to stay calm and out of jail, and she uses her legitimate status as a witch to joke her way into telling a confession. But the spirit of the dead man will be coming by to say “hi”, but will everybody be ready for that?
Overall, Practical Magic is a pretty good film. Though I will say, it is a much different movie than what I expected. There is very little magic in the story, but it has a lot of charm. While critics panned back in 1998, I can see why over 20 years later that many consider a cult classic.