🎞 The Illusionist, 2006 – ★★★½

Watched The Illusionist (2006) from Freestyle Releasing
Directed by Neil Burger. With Edward Norton, Jessica Biel, Paul Giamatti, Rufus Sewell. In turn-of-the-century Vienna, a magician uses his abilities to secure the love of a woman far above his social standing.

Interesting in its own right but not as solid as Nolan’s film The Prestige which came out almost a month an a half later. While this film doesn’t indicate the method of the primary illusion, which makes this story a bit more mystical, it’s fairly well put together. The summary at the end of the movie is quite similar to that of The Prestige, but not as narratively strong–in particular because it shows us too many things which we hadn’t actually seen on screen and which could only be presupposed by the narrator.

Sadly, I think its box office suffered dramatically because it was initially released in no man’s land in late August and by a small indie distributor rather than a major.

I watched the first half of this two nights ago starting after midnight. I’d taped this ages ago on DVR via DirecTV.

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