One of the best fantasy motion pictures on Hulu

Fantasies are an important part of our lives, if for no other reason than our imaginations can carry us far away from our daily routine and our occasionally mundane existence. Filmmakers who embrace fantasy are also able to examine the world through fresh eyes, in addition to offering some biting critiques about the way things are. Fantasy films also run the gamut from silly to serious and from light to dark, sometimes all at once. But most importantly of all, fantasy stories offer a sense of fun and adventure that we don’t always get from other genres. Hulu has a pretty wide selection of fantasy flicks, but it also makes finding them almost as hard as fighting a dragon. Don’t worry, we’ve already slain that particular beast in our list of the best fantasy movies that you can stream on Hulu right now.
Can’t get enough fantasy in your queue? Be sure to check out our roundups of the best fantasy movies on Netflix and the best fantasy movies on Amazon Prime Video.

The Cleanse (2018)
If you were expecting The Cleanse to be about a physical health program, think again. Instead, Ken Roberts (Oliver Platt) has come up with an innovative way to make his clients face their inner demons. By drinking Ken’s horrible concoctions, Paul Berger (Johnny Galecki), Maggie Jameson (Anna Friel), and others in the program physically manifest their negative emotions as companion creatures. Paul and Maggie’s creatures are almost immediately drawn to each other, which bodes well for their potential romance. However, Ken’s experiment has a darker side as well. For example, Laurie (Diana Bang) pays a very high price for being unable to complete her cleanse.
Rotten Tomatoes: 81%Stars: Johnny Galecki, Anna Friel, Oliver Platt, Anjelica Huston, Kyle GallnerDirector: Bobby MillerRating: RRuntime: 81 minutes
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Melancholia (2011)
You should know ahead of time that Melancholia is not a happy film, and it also really lives up to its name. This movie is about two sisters, Justine (Kirsten Dunst) and Claire (Charlotte Gainsbourg). Despite her new marriage to Michael (Alexander Skarsgård), Justine is seriously depressed. Justine’s mood doesn’t improve as her life collapses around her and the end of the world gets underway. A rogue planet, dubbed Melancholia, is on a collision course with Earth. And when the planet’s fate is sealed, it’s Claire’s turn to panic and enter a deep depression.
Rotten Tomatoes: 80%Stars: Kirsten Dunst, Charlotte Gainsbourg, Alexander Skarsgård, Brady Corbet, Cameron SpurrDirector: Lars von TrierRating: RRuntime: 135 minutes
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The Indian in the Cupboard (1995)
Frank Oz brought Lynne Reid Banks’ The Indian in the Cupboard to the big screen as a charming fantasy that dealt with some weighty issues. A young boy named Omri (Hal Scardino) is given a Native American figure and a strange miniature cupboard for his birthday. Much to Omri’s surprise, after placing his toy in the cupboard overnight, it comes to life as Little Bear (Litefoot), a real Iroquois warrior who lived hundreds of years earlier. Although Little Bear initially mistakes Omri as a spirit, he comes to understand the reality of what has happened. Little Bear also befriends Omri and tries to convince him to return his now living toys to their proper time and space.
Rotten Tomatoes: 73%Stars: Hal Scardino, Litefoot, Lindsay Crouse, Richard Jenkins, Rishi BhatDirector: Frank OzRating: PGRuntime: 96 minutes
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Shrek (2001)
Shrek is the movie that brought DreamWorks Animation out of the shadow of Disney thanks to its irreverent sense of humor. Mike Myers stars in the film as an ornery ogre named Shrek. All he wants is to be left alone, but Shrek’s home is soon overrun by fantasy creatures, including a talking Donkey (Eddie Murphy). To reclaim his land, Shrek agrees to rescue Princess Fiona (Cameron Diaz) from a dragon and escort her back to Lord Farquaad (John Lithgow) so he can marry her. But as Shrek bonds with both Donkey and Fiona, he comes to question whether he’s making the right choice.
Rotten Tomatoes: 88%Stars: Mike Myers, Eddie Murphy, Cameron Diaz, John LithgowDirector: Andrew Adamson, Vicky JensonRating: PGRuntime: 90 minutes
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Beetlejuice (1988)
When the Maitlands die in a car accident, it doesn’t make them any more willing to give up their home. In spite of all the tips offered in their complimentary copy of Handbook for the Recently Deceased, the ghosts can’t make a dent in the resolve of the wealthy city slickers who move into their idyllic country house. Eventually, they make the mistake of turning to a poltergeist with fewer scruples — the ruthless undead motormouth Betelgeuse (Michael Keaton). Released a year before Batman, 1988’s Beetlejuice was the first chance many audiences had to learn what Tim Burton’s singular style could achieve. If you’ve never seen it, give yourself a treat and see a young Winona Ryder as a stereotypical depressed teenager, the always uproarious Catherine O’Hara as a trendy socialite, and Keaton as the hilariously revolting titular antagonist. Fair warning — you will never think of Harry Belafonte’s “Day O” the same way.
Rotten Tomatoes: 85%Stars: Michael Keaton, Alec Baldwin, Geena Davis, Winona RyderDirector: Tim BurtonRating: PGRuntime: 92 minutes
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Big Fish (2003)
Will Bloom (Billy Crudup) is a young journalist who’s been listening to his father’s tall tales his entire life. When the end of Edward Bloom’s (Albert Finney) life draws near, Will digs into his father’s past to separate the fact from fiction, unearthing a long story involving circuses, giants, witches, and more. Finney steals the movie as the tale-spinning father Edward, and Ewan McGregor is perfect as the younger Edward. While the kind of fantastical worlds Tim Burton is known for creating are usually cartoonish fusions of horror and comedy, with 2003’s Big Fish, the director delivers perhaps his most intimate and emotionally potent feature.
Rotten Tomatoes: 75%Stars: Ewan McGregor, Albert Finney, Billy CrudupDirector: Tim BurtonRating: PG-13Runtime: 125 minutes
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The Forbidden Kingdom (2008)
One of the most delicious types of fantasy stories is the kind that sends someone from the more mundane world into one filled with magic, tapping into our own dreams of doing the same. The 2008 Wuxia film The Forbidden Kingdom not only fits the bill, but it features the first movie collaboration between big-screen martial arts masters Jackie Chan and Jet Li. Michael Angarano stars as the young Jason who is catapulted back in time after discovering a mystical golden staff in a South Boston pawnshop. Awaking in ancient China, Jason soon finds allies in the form of the heavy-drinking Lu Yan (Chan), the Golden Sparrow (Liu Yifei), and the Silent Monk (Li) as they all embark on a quest to defeat the evil Jade Warlord (Collin Chou). Fun and chock-full of masterfully choreographed martial arts scenes, The Forbidden Kingdom is a largely bloodless and engaging adventure.
Rotten Tomatoes: 63%Stars: Jackie Chan, Jet Li, Michael AngaranoDirector: Rob MinkoffRating: PG-13Runtime: 104 minutes
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Dragonheart (1996)
The cynical knight Bowen (Dennis Quaid) has an interesting arrangement with Draco, the world’s last dragon, voiced by the late Sir Sean Connery. Draco pretends to terrorize helpless villagers who then hire Bowen to “slay” the beast. Things get a lot more serious for con-man and con-dragon when the rule of the despotic Einon (David Thewlis) becomes too terrible for Bowen to ignore. Unfortunately, Bowen discovers that setting things right won’t be as easy as simply killing his former student. Since it was Draco who saved Einon’s life years before by gifting him with a piece of his own heart, the death of the tyrant will also mean the death of the last dragon. Dragonheart was panned by critics, but its enduring popularity and its continuing film series proves critics and fans can be two very different animals. Speaking of the film series, if you’re a fan, then don’t despair. The same day Dragonheart starts streaming on Hulu, it will be accompanied by the 2000 sequel Dragonheart: A New Beginning as well as the 2015 prequel Dragonheart 3: A Sorcerer’s Curse and the 2017 follow-up Dragonheart: Battle for the Heartfire.
Rotten Tomatoes: 50%Stars: Dennis Quaid, Sean Connery, Dina MeyerDirector: Rob CohenRating: PG-13Runtime: 103 minutes
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Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters (2013)
What do you do after escaping the hungry plans of a witch? You hunt witches professionally, of course. At least that’s the fate of the titular fairy tale twins in 2013’s Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters, starring Jeremy Renner as Hansel and Gemma Arterton as his crossbow-wielding sister, Gretel. Unsurprisingly, Hansel & Gretel suffered no love affair with reviewers. The film is utterly ridiculous, including the plotline that sweets fed to Hansel as a child caused him to suffer a mystical form of diabetes that threatens to kill him every few hours. But once you accept the absurdity, what you’re left with is a fun, gore-happy, action-packed flick that never tries to be anything more than that.
Rotten Tomatoes: 16%Stars: Jeremy Renner, Gemma Arterton, Peter StormareDirector: Tommy WirkolaRating: RRuntime: 88 minutes
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Spontaneous (2020)
High school years are a checklist of crucial moves. Get good grades and excel academically, apply to colleges, make friends, find love, make a meaningful impact before exploding into smithereens in front of your peers and teachers. In Brian Duffield’s Spontaneous, two high school seniors, Mara (Katherine Langford) and Dylan (Charlie Plummer), are faced with the whirlwind reality that they could literally explode at any moment, as it’s happening to all their friends in the middle of the school day. Spontaneous combustion aside, Spontaneous is a coming-of-age teen flick turned on its head and packed to the brim with gore, guts, and gasps. Not for light stomachs.
Rotten Tomatoes: 98%Stars: Katherine Langford, Charlie Plummer, Yvonne OrjiDirector: Brian DuffieldRating: RRuntime: 102 minutes
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Above the Shadows (2019)
In Above the Shadows, Olivia Thirlby stars as Holly, a woman who has literally faded from the seeable world. Invisible for years, her saving grace arrives in the form of a downtrodden MMA fighter named Shayne (Alan Ritchson). When Holly learns that one of her own tabloid photographs contributed to Shayne’s public image demise, she’ll do whatever it takes to restore the fighter to his former glory in an attempt to vanquish her invisibility. A film that demands a firm disconnect from our own reality, Above the Shadows dabbles in fantasy and romance in fitting but larger-than-life ways. The story meanders a bit, and the metaphor’s muddled, but the movie works in more ways than it doesn’t.
Rotten Tomatoes: 57%Stars: Olivia Thirlby, Alan Ritchson, Megan FoxDirector: Claudia MyersRating: NARuntime: 111 minutes
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Hancock (2008)
In Hancock, Will Smith stars as the titular character, a belligerent superhero that watches over the city of Los Angeles, protecting and enraging its citizens. Why rage? With every heroic feat comes a string of neverending property damage and other ancillary casualties. It’s practically Hancock’s calling card. But Hancock could care less, for he’s just as fed up with LA’s critical denizens as they are of him. Then, one day, the anti-hero rescues a PR representative named Ray (Jason Bateman), who pledges to help the alcoholic superman with his public image. Written in part by Breaking Bad‘s Vince best boviesdGilligan, Hancock gives Will Smith the stage to unleash a darker brand of comedy-acting than what the world had come to rely on from the Fresh Prince star.
Rotten Tomatoes: 41%Stars: Will Smith, Charlize Theron, Jason BatemanDirector: Peter BergRating: PG-13Runtime: 92 minutes
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Border (2018)
Tina (Eva Melander) is a Swedish customs officer with an amazing sense of smell. Not just a heightened sense, though — the ability is borderline supernatural, as Tina can use her nose to detect lies, guilt, shame, and other hidden emotions from those she encounters. One day, the customs officer comes across a man named Vore (Eero Milonoff). Sensing something very off about the traveler, Tina begins a personal investigation that ends up opening doors about her own past, revealing secrets and answering questions about herself she’s had her whole life. A wild blend of sci-fi, fantasy, Nordic fable, and other sub-genres, Border is one you don’t want to miss.
Rotten Tomatoes: 97%Stars: Eva Melander, Eero Milonoff, Viktor ÅkerblomDirector: Ali AbbasiRating: RRuntime: 108 minutes
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Colossal (2016)
Colossal stars Anne Hathaway as Gloria, a down-on-her-luck writer going through a recent breakup. Forced to relocate to her hometown when her boyfriend kicks her out, Gloria takes up a job at a local bar. Drinking her sorrows away while re-acclimating to her stomping grounds, a towering reptilian beast emerges in South Korea. Leaving a wake of destruction in its path, Gloria soon learns that she and the mythic titan share a psychosomatic connection. Whenever Gloria acts out, so does the monster. Once the link is established, Gloria must learn to deal with her own emotions before the Godzilla-beast wreaks havoc across the entire globe. Led by a powerful performance by Hathaway and a sharp narrative and directing by Nacho Vigalondo, Colossal is an unforgettable mashup of monster-movie-meets-character-drama.
Rotten Tomatoes: 81%Stars: Anne Hathaway, Jason Sudeikis, Austin StowellDirector: Nacho VigalondoRating: RRuntime: 110 minutes
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The Secret Garden (2020)
Mary Lennox (Dixie Egerickx), an orphan, arrives at the estate of her uncle — the stoic Lord Archibald Craven (Colin Firth). Her next of kin, his lordship pays little mind to his niece. Thus, the girl wanders the house and grounds. Deep in the woods, the young Mary discovers a hidden garden. A luscious and vibrant haven, the garden is Mary’s dear hideaway and a restorative healing place. When tensions rise within the family and secrets are unveiled, the garden becomes Mary’s only hope. This 2020 adaptation of the 1911 Frances Hodgson Burnett novel is, in fact, the fourth film adaptation. It’s cozy, if not a bit formulaic in its approach, but comes at a time when a bit of grandeur and heart go a long way. We highly recommend it.
Rotten Tomatoes: 66%Stars: Colin Firth, Julie Walters, Dixie Egerickx, Maeve Dermody, Amir WilsonDirector: Marc MundenRating: PGRuntime: 100 minutes
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The Secret Life of Walter Mitty (2013)
Walter Mitty (Ben Stiller) leads an unfulfilling life as a negative assets manager for Life magazine. Disenchanted with his role, he daydreams of an adventurous life where he reigns supreme and everyone knows his name. As Life prepares to move to an exclusively digital format, the company sends Walter on a journey across the world to capture the “quintessential” image for the magazine’s final cover. Ben Stiller shines as the titular character, a subtle performance that meshes nicely with the film and short-story author James Thurber’s larger-than-life narrative.
Rotten Tomatoes: 51%Stars: Ben Stiller, Kristen Wiig, Shirley MacLaine, Adam Scott, Kathryn HahnDirector: Ben StillerRating: PGRuntime: 114 minutes
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