We’re doing something a little different this summer for #WayBackWednesday! I asked the Fangirlish staff to tell me their favorite summer flicks–films they associate with summer, be that a film set in the summer, a film that was released in the summer, or a movie they spent a summer watching. Each writer will tell you why they chose their movie and I’ll be reviewing their film recommendations during June, July, and August. This is our Summer Vacation series! Pour yourself a glass of Kool-Aid, make some ramen, and find out how we spent our summer vacations each #WayBackWednesday.
The Craft is a movie that totally freaked me out as a kid. I watched The Craft for the first time at a friend’s house during a sleepover. It scared me so badly that we didn’t finish it. What can I say? 8th grade Ashley did NOT like horror movies at all, but especially not horror movies that involve a nightmare room full of snakes!
I didn’t watch The Craft again until a few years ago when my local independent theater played The Craft along with Buffy the Vampire Slayer (1992) for their 90s horror week during their October retro horror month. I made it through The Craft this time, and it definitely grew on me. I’m still not big on all the snakes, but there’s a lot to appreciate about The Craft. Did you catch this one back in the day? Check out the trailer for The Craft and then we’ll find out why Fangirlish staff writer, Jasmine picked it for her Summer Vacation movie.
Creepy, right? I think the trailer does a pretty good job explaining the plot of the film, but just in case, here’s a quick summary of The Craft. The Craft tells the story of the new girl in town, Sarah Bailey (Robin Tunney), who has difficulty fitting in at her new school. She’s taken in by three girls, Nancy (Fairuza Balk), Rochelle (Rachel True), and Bonnie (Neve Campbell). Sarah finds out that her new friends are more than just fellow outcasts–they’re witches. A struggle for dominance emerges when Nancy attempts to seize ultimate power. Can anyone stop Nancy? You’ll have to watch to find out.
Here’s why The Craft is Jasmine’s favorite summer flick.
The Craft isn’t really a summer film per se but it was released close to summer because it came out in May. I associate it with summer because when I was younger I would go stay with my brother every summer and we’d do things like go to the movies. We went to see The Craft together and since then, every time it comes on I think of that. The Craft is just a wild ride and it’s a film you can get together with friends to watch. Even though it’s a movie about girls who are witches, you can really watch it anytime and that’s what makes it so great.
Those are Jasmine’s reasons for checking out The Craft this summer. Here are a few more reasons I think you might want to check out The Craft.
I’ve now watched The Craft three times, and one thing that really sticks with me about the film is that even though I enjoy horror movies now, it still manages to creep me out. I’ve already brought up the snakes, but there is just something eerie about the entire film. To be honest, I think this is largely due to Fairuza Balk’s performance as Nancy. Balk is positively fiendish in The Craft. With her devilish grin and zero remorse for her cruelty, Balk is absolutely perfect in the role of Nancy–perfectly evil that is. If you want a villain that really sticks with you, you’ll want to check out The Craft.
All-Star 90s Cast List
The cast of The Craft is a real “Who’s Who” of 90s rising stars. Lead Robin Tunney starred the previous year in the cult favorite, Empire Records. Fairuza Balk would later go on to star in American History X and Almost Famous. Neve Campbell and Skeet Ulrich would go on to star in smash hit Scream later that year, breathing new life into the horror genre. Rachel True would go on to star in the Dave Chapelle comedy, Half Baked, and would land a recurring role in The Drew Carey Show. Comedian Breckin Meyer also appears in The Craft, adding one more horror movie to his extensive and genre-crossing resume. If you love 90s films, you will really want to add The Craft to your list, just for the fun of shouting, “Hey, I know that person!” with your friends.
A Well-Crafted Soundtrack
If you’ve been reading my #WayBackWednesday column for any length of time, you’ll know that I’ve got a good ear for soundtracks. The soundtrack for The Craft is a time capsule of 90s alt-rock. You’ll find mid-late 90s greats such as Letters to Cleo, Matthew Sweet, Jewel, Elastica, and Portishead. The soundtrack also has some fascinating covers as well. Notable covers are “Tomorrow Never Knows” by The Beatles, as performed by Our Lady Peace, “How Soon is Now?” by The Smiths, as performed by Love Spit Love, and “Fallin’” by Neil Sedaka, as performed by Connie Francis.
“How Soon is Now?” is the real standout for me on the soundtrack and is permanently cemented in my brain as a “witchy” song, as this particular cover is also the theme for Charmed. While I never watched Charmed very often, it is one of my mother and sister’s favorite shows, so I would often hear the song. If you’re up for a real trip to the 90s, you should definitely check out The Craft and its soundtrack.
Thanks very much to Jasmine for suggesting The Craft for this week’s Summer Vacation movie! It was a blast to revisit it and my appreciation for the film grows with each viewing. Jasmine has her own movie column here on Fangirlish called “A-Z Movie Reviews,” where she covers every film in her home video collection from A-Z. Her latest A-Z Movie Review covers one of my favorite Shakespeare twists–She’s the Man! Jasmine has also written about The Craft, as well as the sequel/reboot, The Craft: Legacy, which came out last year. She also writes about Big Sky, music, books, and much more here on Fangirlish, where she is one of our most prolific writers. Be sure to check out her work; there’s a good chance she’s written about something that you like!
The Craft is streaming now on HBO MAX.