Before Lord of the Rings fanboys get up in arms, let's be clear: Galadriel, J.R.R. Tolkien's great elf queen, played in Peter Jackson's films by Cate Blanchett, is no conventional witch with a bent hat and a broomstick. In Tolkien's text, the ones to call Galadriel a witch are her enemies and the occasional distrusting dwarf. But she's invested with abilities that many witches in folklore have also come to possess most importantly a kind of terrifying, oracular power that allows her to see into the hearts of men and into the future. As the bearer of a magical Ring of Power, Galadriel also knows that she can become a great and devastatingly omnipotent presence herself. But she resists, and sends the epic's main characters along on their quest with gifts and her blessing, remaining, in the end, that wise ancient Lady of the Wood.