Some archetypes in old stories or fictive figures in movies and tales are a way for the human mind to channel the spiritual world messages into creativity. Then an illusion, a fictive story is said to be a product of the human imagination only.
But the levels of a sensitive subconscious can pick up messages and contact with energy from other levels in this Universe.
In general, most people want to be sane. Very few want to voluntarily take a role of a nutcase in ones surrounding community -unless in wish to provoke, naturally. It is a basic human emotional need to adjust oneself into ones social environment. Our way to express things our mind displays to us as imaginative ideas, monsters, creatures and fictive entities, is to categorize the visions "as only of the imagination."
Of course, many times this is the case. But in other times it is how the spiritual world gives us messages, that our analytic thinking does not connect with. We cannot always analyze what we see and know. Psychics know this well.
I call the Earth the Physical Spiritual Level. Our body and language are unique for us humans. When we receive messages into our mind from other entities in the universe, they might not share our language at all. They might not have any physical body or any physical being. They can be only of energy and still have a need to connect with us. Psychics are sensitive to some of these entities.
When I hear stories of elves, watch the Lord of the Rings, see old Disney cartoons or such, in their scripts I see so many familiar energy forms. The little angels, the holy beings, figures that appear as light only. The half demons and the oddities between two worlds. The list is long.
I good tale is loving and inspiring, creative. Even if the writer, the so-called creator of the story, would not be a very spiritual wish, they can still as human beings receive those many energy levels in how entities connect with people. And if the story writer is a spiritual person, he or she has been wise to set seen vision into a story or fiction to share it in.
The human brain and body have not all been researched yet. In my view, we are able as human beings to receive many kinds of information, which is not in words or physical forms at all.
Energy is the key.
When spiritual beings - in whatever form they appear in - connect with people, I think it happens for one of three reasons:
1. They have some message to give or deliver, 2.They want to help or to be helped somehow, 3.We have in our own spiritual development reached the level in which they connect in and just happen to meet them in the figure appearing to us.