In April 2002, the first of the Harry Potter films was released, and the world was never the same again.A generation grew up watching the Harry Potter films. They stole our hearts when we were kids and so loyal are we that even years after the last movie came out, we still proudly call ourselves ‘Potterheads’.
The mystic blend of magic, mystery, friendship and thrill is what made us such ardent fans as we followed the Chosen One as he set out to defeat He Who Must Not be Named along with the brightest witch of her age, and King Weasley.
Harry Potter, Hermione Granger and Ron Weasley became such important parts of our lives that even after the 200th run of the entire movie series, we just aren’t satisfied.
If you are seeking for similar movies to get bewitched by, look no further.
Here is a list of movies similar to Harry Potter:
Fantastic Beast Series (2016-)
A treat for all the Potterheads, the Fantastic Beasts movies take us back to the wizarding world we all love so much. This series follows the adventures of Newt Scamander, the quirky Magizoologist and a former student of Hogwarts. Being a spin-off prequel of the Harry Potter series we see several old characters, and the world where Grindelwald was at his prime.
The time and place are different, so are the characters and the threats and this provides us with the perfect opportunity to know more about the wizarding world. We are introduced to a whole lot of magical creatures straight out of the book Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them which were previously left unexplored.
Some are beautiful, some are scary, and some are just plain adorable and we can’t get enough of them. And yes! There is a bonus treat for non-magical people ( Muggles or No-Maj, your choice) as a baker gets a huge part of the film.
A box of magic and adventure, this movie series has are plenty of surprises and twists and turns that make us fall in love with the world of magic again and again.
The Chronicles of Narnia (2005-2010)
When Lucy first walked through the cupboard into Narnia, we walked along with her and began our journey into this world that was beyond imagination.
While Harry Potter is a story about young wizards and witches, Narnia follows the story of the four Pevensie siblings, ordinary children destined to conquer a lot under the wise guidance of Aslan, a wise and powerful lion who is the true king of Narnia.
In the subsequent installments, the kids return to a world that has been invaded by tyrannical Telmarines and thus begins a new chapter in the lives of the four kings and queens of yore and Narnia.
Set in a different time, we witness wars fought with bows and arrows and swords and unparalleled camaraderie. Complete with an ice queen, friendly fauns, trees that sing, dragons, sea monsters, minotaurs, griffins and centaurs and a handsome prince, the Narnia movie series has it all to satiate our magic-hungry souls.
Maleficent Films (2014-)
Haven’t we all grown up with the classic tale of Sleeping Beauty where an innocent princess is cursed by an evil fairy? The princess goes into a slumber that lasts for a hundred years only to be woken up by a brave prince.
Well, the Maleficent films change the very notion as they shift focus from the young princess to the supposedly malicious Maleficent. With a sneak-peek into the fairy’s past, we get to see parts of her childhood and also the reason why Maleficent turns evil. Trust me, once you get to know the real reason the king whom we all have sympathized with so far won’t seem so innocent.
What’s more endearing is the bond between Maleficent and the young princess whom she calls Beastie. The prince is there of course but he has a less defining role here and we aren’t complaining because some twists and surprises have only made the story more compelling.
A story of adventure, endless magic, love and gradually developing harmony between the magical creatures and humans, the Maleficent series have carved a place in our hearts.
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory(2005)
Imagine a visit to your favorite chocolate factory and getting to meet your hero who also happens to be the genius behind the mouth-watering chocolates. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory bring to life this very dream.
Young Charlie Bucket lives in a house that leans crazily in all directions. The Bucket family is as poor as can be with Charlie’s mother keeping the family sane and his father relentlessly seeking employment. What’s more, is that all four of Charlie’s grandparents all sleep on the same bed never once leaving it until Charlie wins the golden ticket, along with four other children, to visit Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory and his Grandpa Joe gets the honor of accompanying him.
Thus begins Charlie’s adventures in a sugary landscape of chocolate rivers, gumdrop trees, and rock candy mountains. But beneath all this lies Willy Wonka’s ulterior motive which is slowly unraveled as the children tour the factory.
With delightful musical numbers and the strange Oompa Loompas who remind us of Santa’s elves, this movie takes us on a sweetly magical story.
A Wrinkle in Time
Unique settings, children dealing with loss and disappointment, using magic to ward off evil as they set off in a magical adventure are all factors that we associate with the Harry Potter franchise. However, A Wrinkle in Term gave every supernatural element a definition of its own.
The story follows a young girl named Meg Murry who is on a quest to find her father, a scientist who had supposedly found the essence of human existence and somehow teleported to another place. Meg, her classmate Calvin O’Keefe along with the three mysterious astral travellers known as Mrs. Whatsit, Mrs. Who and Mrs. Which, risk a dangerous journey to a planet that possesses all of the evil in the universe.
There are so many reasons that make you fall in love with the movie. The underlying messages of courage, the ability of teamwork, power of love and perseverance gives us the same vibes as the Harry Potter movies despite the obvious differences in the premises.
Remember how Harry spent several years living in the cupboard under the stairs, largely ignored and ill-treated by his Uncle and Aunt and his cousin? I bet the scene where Harry loses his cool and blows up Aunt Marge still makes you laugh out loud.
Well, Matilda does the same. Only this time it’s a movie about a young genius girl named Matilda Wormwood, who develops psychokinetic abilities.
Matilda is usually neglected by her parents and her older brother. They even initially refused to let her go to school. Well, she gets around that by gluing her father’s head to the hat and when he forces her to watch television her anger bursts the television. These are just a few glimpses of Matilda’s escapades throughout the movie.
Matilda might come across as a children’s movie at first glance but it has so much to take home that teenagers and even adults fall in love with it. Whether it is the nostalgia of the 90s, the underlying theme that you should cut out toxic people from your life or even how through the titular character we are shown that we are not our parents, the movie is a must-watch for all across generations.
Percy Jackson Series(2010-2013)
A boy gets to know that he is not an ordinary human being. He has to brave several dangerous adventures to save the world from an impending danger along with a very intelligent girl and a guy who is his closest confidant. He has to learn several things for which he has to attend a special school for children like him. Sounds similar? If you are thinking about Harry Potter here, you are wrong because it’s Percy Jackson we are talking about.
Percy learns that he is, in fact, a demigod. He is the only living son of Greek Poseidon and has to attend Camp Half-Blood, a training camp for demigods, the half-mortal children of Greek gods and learn to use his powers. Along with Annabeth and Grover, Percy Jackson sets out to save his mother and eventually learns that the future of the world rests on his shoulders.
The movie series effortlessly mixes Greek mythology with the contemporary world. Even if you are not a fan of the Greek mythology you are sure to enjoy watching theses unfathomable adventures.
The Lord of the Rings Trilogy (2001-2003)
Few trilogies have been as successful as The Lord of the Rings in combining fantasy and action and never once wavering from its magical journey.
There are several mystical adventures stretching over an equally magical landscape with many mountains, valleys, streams, villages, caves, residences, grottos, bowers, fields, high roads, low roads. All of this takes place in the fictional world of Middle-Earth. The movies follow the adventures of hobbit Frodo Baggins and the Fellowship as they start a quest to destroy the One Ring, which would ultimately destroy its maker, the Dark Lord Sauron.
The Fellowship eventually has to split up and Frodo continues the quest with his loyal companion Sam and the slippery Gollum.
This trilogy pulls the right chords of our hearts with strong bonds of friendship between the characters. With light moments exactly where they are needed, the movies have etched their marks permanently in the minds and hearts of the viewers.
Bridge to Terabithia (2007)
Dealing with the death of a friend as a child is very hard. Especially when he or she is one of the very few friends that you might have. Bridge to Terabithia deals with this very heavy topic through a magical journey.
The movie focuses on two twelve-year-olds misfits, Jess and Leslie who create a fantasy world called Terabithia to escape their troubles. Spending most of the time together in an abandoned treehouse, they construct a secret kingdom full of fantastical creatures, beautiful forests, and palaces that only they can see and one of them dies, it becomes the only way to keep this friendship alive.
This movie shows how powerful imagination can be. It can bring to life a magical world that is a haven for the kids. It shows how true friendship is stronger than all difficulties in life.
Bridge to Terabithia is entertaining not only for children but and for anyone who wants to get lost in magic for a little while.
How often do we find a movie so finely invested with fauns and fairies, yet is firmly anchored in reality? Pan’s Labyrinth is one such wondrous movie from this genre that is so hard to find.
The story is set in Spain in 1944, five years after the Spanish Civil War during the early Francoist period. It is a story of a little girl’s attempts to free herself and her neighbors from her stepfather’s tyranny. The account seams this real world with a mythical world with an overgrown, abandoned labyrinth and a mysterious faun, with whom the main character, Ofelia majorly interacts.
In fact, she is the only one who can see. On one hand, the young girl has to fight the monsters of the fantasy world and on the other, she has to survive in a war-torn Spain. She represents the courage and anxiety of anyone who fights battles they can’t win.
Visually stunning, heavily metaphorical, full of magic keys and potions, fairies and a girl fighting all odds to meet her father, Pan’s Labyrinth is a must-watch.
There is no replacement for Harry Potter. There never was and there can never be. But the list we have made here are giants in their own right that will take you on journeys that cannot be missed.
So what are you waiting for? Grab a bowl of popcorn and get ready to dive into a world of magic and adventure.