Elijah Wood’s performance as the unexpected hero Frodo Baggins in The Lord of the Rings catapulted him to stardom and established him in fantasy’s greatest adventure. Wood has never needed to rely on his fantasy background, despite the clichés of swords and sorcery. So check out these 7 must-see films without wizards or power rings.

1. Everything Is Illuminated (2005)

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Director- Liev Schreiber

In pursuit of his grandfather’s past, a young Jewish American travels to Ukraine. He has a photograph as well as the name of a town. He hires Odessa Heritage Tours, which is comprised of an elderly gentleman and his English-speaking grandson. The three, together with grandfather’s insane dog, go from Odessa to the centre of Ukraine in an ancient automobile. Jonathan, the American, is a collector who keeps track of his treasures by placing them in small plastic bags. The interpreter, Alex, is the stereotypical wild and crazy guy. “Was there anti-Semitism in Ukraine before the war?” Alex inquires of the elderly man.

2. Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind (2004)

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Director- Michel Gondry

Joel Barish has the urge to vacation to Montauk instead of working on Valentine’s Day. He meets Clementine Kruczynski in the train station after a cold day at the beach, and they have a crush on one other. Joel and Clementine are unaware that they were formerly lovers. When their relationship ended, Joel had just deleted Clementine from his memories when he discovered that Clementine had done the same. However, Joel is surprised to discover that he still loves Clementine during his erasing procedure, and he fights to save the memories of their moments together instead of losing her.

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3. Green Street Hooligans (2005)

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Director- Lexi Alexander

Matt moves to London to live with his sister and her husband Steve after being wrongfully expelled from Harvard for possessing a cache of cocaine. He meets Steve’s younger brother Pete, who is chirpy and confident. Pete is first hesitant to get to know Matt and allow him to accompany him around the capital city because he fears that he would be perceived as a “outsider,” but after a big drinking session with him and his friends, he rapidly changes his mind. Matt is severely assaulted by a bunch of Birmingham City thugs on his way home from a football match, until Pete and his friends intervene and defend him.

Matt discovers the truth about Pete and his friends here: they are football hooligans who run the GSE (Green Street Elite) ‘company.’ Matt, who was initially terrified of the violence, eventually became as desensitised to it as his newfound friends – but as events unfold, suspicion, shocking revelations, and unresolved scores culminate in a devastating climax in which London’s most bitter football rivals, Millwall and West Ham United, are set to face off.

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4. Sin City (2005)

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Director(s)- Frank Miller, Robert Rodriguez

Three tarnished anti-heroes of Basin City, the cradle of crime and corruption, meet paths in their journey for redemption in four stories based on Frank Miller’s Sin City universe. Detective John Hartigan, the filthy city’s last honest detective, breaks every rule in the book in his battle to save Nancy Callahan, an innocent eleven-year-old girl, from the clutches of well-connected child molester Roark Junior. Meanwhile, Marv, the massive ex-convict and ugly brute with the killer fists, finds himself framed for a crime he didn’t commit, hell-bent on revenge and murder, in another part of town, wearing the deep scars of endless fights. Finally, when a bloody act of justice in the city’s red-light district threatens the already fragile truce between the local prostitute community and the police, Dwight McCarthy, a quiet private eye, steps in to protect them.

5. The Oxford Murders (2008)

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Director- Álex de la Iglesia

Martin, a math PhD student, enrols at Oxford with the hopes of meeting Professor Arthur Seldom, his mentor. The young guy finds housing at Mrs. Eagleton’s, but the atmosphere in this place is oppressive due to the landlady’s attitude. Mrs. Eagleton, who happens to be Seldom’s friend, is a pompous, unsympathetic woman who also suffocates her daughter Beth. Things aren’t any better at university, as Martin is put in his place by his idol during one of Seldom’s lectures. But his personal life improves when he has an affair with Lorna, a lovely girl he met while playing squash. Seldom and Martin arrive at Mrs. Eagleton’s house one night and discover her dead body. They are questioned by the cops. They soon decide to conduct their own private probe.

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6. Maniac (2012)

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Director- Franck Khalfoun

The restaurateur Frank is the owner of a mannequin shop that his mother used to operate. Frank was mistreated as a child by his mother, and he is now a psychopath serial killer with a penchant for scalps. When he meets the French photographer Anna, she is enamoured with his mannequin restoration work and the two become friends. Anna steals mannequins to promote an exhibition, and Frank assists her. Franks attends the premiere and stalks and murders Anna’s agent Rita. Frank is summoned to Rita’s apartment after Anna informs him of what has occurred. Frank is soon suspected of being a serial killer, but he is still at her apartment.

7. Cooties (2014)

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Director-  Cary Murnion, Jonathan Milott

Clint Hadson, a teacher and aspiring author, returns to his mother’s house in Ft. Chicken, Illinois, to create a horror book and work as a substitute teacher. He reconnects with Lucy McCormick, a former classmate and crush who is now a teacher and dating the powerful Wade Johnson. Shelly Linker, meanwhile, consumes a virus-infected chicken nugget. Shelley is tormented in Clint’s class and bites the boy Patriot on the face. The virus spreads in the yard during recess when youngsters devour the school personnel. Teachers are soon surrounded by zombie students.