Practical Magic, the 1998 witchy rom-com which was panned critically and somehow gained a cult following in the past few years, is a delightfully spooky story of sisterhood and loyalty. And really, what’s not to love? You have Nicole Kidman in her red-haired prime, an unrelentingly charming Sandra Bullock, and Stockard Channing in enormous, wide-brimmed hats. It’s pretty much the trifecta of desirable qualities for a female-driven Halloween movie.
However, I will concede that some parts of the movie make no fucking sense whatsoever. (Hey, it happens.)
Here are just a few questions that inevitably roll around in my head every time I watch this movie — because even when magic is involved, that doesn’t explain away every gaping plot hole and unexplained detail:
Isn’t cursing the men who love you kind of shooting yourself in the foot?
Like, I understand you’re heartbroken, honey, but wouldn’t it be easier to just turn the jerks into toads and leave the possibility for love in your life? Or, is the curse maybe supposed to be a failsafe against getting close to men? Did I just answer my own question? Maybe, to all of the above.
Where did Stockard Channing get that enormous floppy hat??
This may be the most important question of all. I want a sunhat that’s so large I can curl up in it like a blanket. Seriously, someone send me shopping links.
How much does a spell cost?
Are the Owens sisters actually working as professional witches? They seem to take commission for spells, but I’m curious about A.) what an actual love spell would set you back (NO REASON, JUST CURIOUS), and B.) whether or not the sisters make their living doing this sort of work.
Whatever happened with that desperate, lovesick woman?
She killed a bird, she kissed a photo, Briget Owens told her “Careful what you wish for” … and then what happened?? We never find out (in the movie, anyway), but it sounds like shit was about to hit the fan.
Who thinks that a man with different-colored eyes who can flip pancakes is so rare that he doesn’t exist??
Oh, sweetie. Those qualities aren’t extraordinary. You should have cast a love spell for a guy who consistently texts you back — that would have been an anomaly.
It’s kinda creepy to make a blood oath to die on the same day, right?
I love these spooky Owens women, but they keep making these haphazard curses and blood-oaths left and right, and I feel like they need to keep their spur-of-the-moment magic in check! These promises have consequences, y’all!
Did Nicole Kidman actually drive for days to see her sister and then turn around and leave before sunrise? Can witches time travel? Did they just communicate with their minds??
I mean, I have no idea what happened in this scene, except that Sandra Bullock woke up afterwards and finally felt like taking a shower.
How many employees can a modest, independent bath and beauty store support?
Look, I would like to think that local business can totally flourish in this Massachusetts town, but I think it might be a tad unrealistic to have three full-time employees working a tiny soap store. Even if one of them is renowned character actress Margo Martindale.
Was the tequila bottle haunted?
Everyone was having a great time drinking midnight margaritas, and then all of a sudden Gillian and Sally were horrified that the bottle of tequila was somehow infused with Jimmy’s spirit/haunting them/getting them drunk on bad vibes? I don’t know. But somehow that tequila tipped everyone off about the pesky little murder the girls were covering up.
Where did the aunts go when they left?
Do they have Airbnbs for witches who are looking to teach their nieces a lesson? Or a nice vacation package, perhaps?
How does a dead person simply become a demon?
I thought Jimmy was just a ghost, but then he somehow managed to possess Gillian, so it seems like he’s just some sort of general force of evil. Maybe he was a vampire the entire time? Or perhaps he was just a really obnoxious, toxic man, which I suppose is equally disturbing.
How do these women not go to jail?
I’m very glad that everything worked out, and Aidan Quinn decided that he actually didn’t care whether or not the woman he loved actually killed anyone, but … I still sort of feel like there would have been actual legal repercussions.
But, then again, maybe that’s one of the perks of being a witch.