The compilation of the 5 best fantasy movies 2009 consists mostly of original movies. For a number of years before 2009, the lists of best fantasy movies were dominated by sequels and franchise films. In 2009, while one of the best fantasy movies was a sequel, some films with new characters and story lines were able to establish themselves among the best. Whether 2009 is an anomaly or the beginning of a new trend remains to be seen.

  1. avatar.” A paralyzed man, Jake Sully, signs on to go to an alien world and infiltrate the native race on the planet by creating a virtual version of himself called an avatar. The company that Sully works for wants to drive off the natives and mine the planet. However, the more Sully interacts with the natives, the more sympathetic he becomes to their plight. Some have called director James Cameron's epic fantasy, “'Dances With Wolves' in space.” But, this movie's visual effects and use of computer technology make this film a movie milestone. This film isn't just the best fantasy movie of 2009, it's one of the best films ever made. It stars Sam Worthington, Zoe Saldana, and Sigourney Weaver. Avatar grossed over $2.7 billion (that's right, billion) worldwide, the largest gross by a movie in film history without adjusting for inflation.

  2. “Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince.” One would think that the sixth installment of a film franchise would get stale and that production would get sloppy. But, this movie delivered with critics and at the box office, easily making it one of the best fantasy movies of 2009. Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, Rupert Grint, and Michael Gambon star, as usual, as the gang takes on Lord Voldemort again.

  3. “The Watchmen.” A group of retired superheroes in an alternate universe during the cold war come together again to investigate the murder of one of their former colleagues. Soon, they find that they have stumbled into a vast plot to dominate the world. This fantasy movie is based on several popular DC Comics characters and stars Jackie Earle Haley, Malin Akerman, Matthew Goode, and Billy Crudup.

  4. “Up.” An old man resists being railroaded into a retirement home by tying enough balloons to his house to make it fly away. He's going on an adventure that he has dream about since he was young. What he doesn't know is that he has a young stowaway. This animated fantasy movie was produced by Pixar, and, like most Pixar efforts, it's a home run. Who, besides Pixar, could make a cartoon hero out of a 78-year-old man? This fantasy stars the voices of Ed Asner and Jordan Nagai

  5. “The Princess and the Frog.” In 1920s New Orleans, a visiting prince is turned into a frog by an evil voodoo doctor. The prince sees a girl he believes to be a princess and asks her to kiss him so that he can become human again. Instead, the girl turns into a frog, too. This film follows the adventure of the prince and “princess” as frogs and their quest to become human again. This 2D animated fantasy movie is a triumph for Disney. It recaptures the magic of the classic Disney fantasy movies. The voices of Anika Noni Rose, Bruno Campos, and Oprah Winfrey star.