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Magic at the Movies Orders a Royale with Cheese


Welcome to another week of Magic at the Movies! Week one featured some classics to be sure, but most of the selections were pretty far removed from pop culture by today's standards. This week features (nearly) the complete opposite! Let's dive into what went down on this week's collection of magical movie mashups.

Occupying the 6th slot on the IMDB Top 250 is Schindler's List. An incredible and important film that I hold in the highest reverence. It's also completely inappropriate for this series, so it's our first swap out! Army of Darkness is another film I hold in the highest esteem, but obviously for completely different reasons. As a young man, I discovered Evil Dead, Army of Darkness, and a love for their star: Bruce Campbell. The epitome of the "B-Movie" actor, he's made a career out of his massive chin and over the top charm.

I swapped Accursed Witch in place of the original witch featured in the scene, a natural fit. "It's a trick, get an axe!" -Ash.

The finale of Peter Jackson's epic Lord of the Rings adaptation comes in at number 7 on the list. With the world of Middle Earth being a fantasy setting itself, nearly every frame of this movie could easily be merged with Magic: the Gathering. After looking over a multitude of stills from the movie, I had to go with Sam versus the evil Shelob, who I still think is the best giant spider ever put on the silver screen.

Swap in Ishkanah, Grafwidow and Sam's got a whole new problem on his hands. Hope he doesn't get delirium!

Many consider Pulp Fiction to be Quentin Tarantino's finest work and one of the high watermarks of American cinema. Almost immediately, I thought of swapping Liliana in for gangster bride, Mia Wallace, as they share the same goth vibe. I considered Macabre Waltz for the dance scene, but I ultimately went for the classic Liliana of the Veil in the car scene as they pull up to the restaurant.

I'm particularly proud of this edit because I was able to preserve the reflections on the car windshield as well as interpret the lighting to really place her "in" the scene. Almost as good as a $5 milkshake!

Just like week one, we got two films from the same series (previously The Godfather). I wonder if this will ever happen again on the rest of the list? Time will tell. The first film in the Lord of the Rings trilogy introduced us all to one of the most beloved fantasy worlds of all time. I thought about editing the Balrog, but honestly, nothing from Magic can top its incredible clash with Gandalf. Instead, I opted for the Cave Troll scene from the Mines of Moria.

Golgari Grave-Troll has such a funny kind of "Gotcha!" expression that it was perfect for the shot where Frodo is nervously hiding around a pillar. "They have a Grave-Troll!" -Boromir.

Coming in at number 10 to round off this week, we find Sergio Leone's magnum opus, "The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly". The pinnacle of the spaghetti western genre, this 1966 film is a must see. From the soundtrack, to the cinematography, to Clint Eastwood's iconic character the "Man with No Name," this piece of cinema influenced generations of films that followed in its wake.

For the Magic mashup, I finally gave in and went to Scryfall's incredible tagging site and typed in "gun". There aren't a lot of guns in Magic, but immediately Alexander Clamilton jumped out at me as a hilarious foil to Eastwood's dead serious anti-hero. "Every gun makes its own tune" -The Man with No Name.

That's it for this week on Magic at the Movies! Grab some popcorn from the concession stand and plop yourself down for next week as we wonder: is life really like a box of chocolates? What is the first rule of Fight Club? Will Frodo and Sam make it to Mordor? What's real and what's a dream? And finally, is traveling through hyperspace like dusting crops?

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