The most effective 10 Motion pictures About Magic Of All Time
So right here we go, the most effective 10 movies about ‘magic’ of ‘all time’. That is a tall order and will of course develop into a listing that will be challenged by many.
What I’ve tried to do is collate a list of motion pictures that feature movies which have magical themes or very apparent magical references in them. In fact the rash of Harry Potter films, the wonderful Lord of the Rings trilogy and even Star Wars may very well be included. Nonetheless, from a want to increase the record of magician inspired or magically themed motion pictures I have left these out as being ‘too obvious’.
For causes of brevity I’ve also not included absolutely animated films on this listing, so the likes of Fantasia, Sword within the Stone and even The Illusionist (Sylvian Chomet’s 2010 film) are not considered.
I’ve also ignored tv collection, such because the Magician (Invoice Bixby trained by Mark Wilson), Jonathan Creek, the quirky 1970’s Television collection Ace of Wands in addition to specific Colombo, Midsummer Murders, One Foot within the Grave episodes that were based mostly around magic and magicians.
So this brings us to a quick round-up of a number of the best of the magician-in-the-motion pictures movies I am aware of. Beginning with these just outdoors the highest Ten – not because of any lack of high quality, just because they’re slightly peripheral to the main listing.
Passport to Pimlico (1949) directed by Henry Cornelius and featuring nice performances from Stanley Holloway and Margaret Rutherford. This nice Ealing comedy incorporates a sequence on the tube train the place magician of the day The great Masoni, drops his case allowing his doves to escape including to the surreal nature of the comedian moment.
Useless of Night time (1945) directed by Alberto Cavancanti is a very good Ealing portmanteau horror film which contained a series of tales a couple of dream instructed by a guest arriving at distant farmhouse. The movie is alleged to have influenced cosmologists Hoyle, Gold and Bondi to develop the ‘regular state theory’. They had been inspired by the circular nature of the films narrative. Nonetheless the movie contains a narrative about a ventriloquist and a less than charming dummy. Ventriloquism is said to the magical arts, hence its inclusion here. The story is the forerunner of one that is definitely within the list, Magic, starring Anthony Hopkins.
Thirty 9 Steps (1939) directed by Alfred Hitchcock. The original and maybe biggest version tony stark iron man t shirt design of this movie the climax of which is takes place as in a theatre the place a ‘reminiscence man’ is performing. The Memory Act may be thought-about as a subset of the magical artwork of Mentalism. The great magician Harry Lorraine is world famous not just for his ‘magic’ act but also for his contribution to the training and improvement of the human memory.
The Raven (1963) directed by Roger Corman sees the great Vincent Value, Peter Lorre and Boris Karloff as medieval magicians involved a magical duel. This enjoyable, camp and colourful film loosely primarily based on the Edgar Allen Poe poem The Raven, isn’t the best example of the Corman-Worth collection, however is nice enjoyable.
Night of the Demon (1957) Jaques Tourneur. This great film is an adaptation of M R James’ story “Casting the Runes”. Starring Dana Andrews as a sceptical psychologist ‘cursed’ by the Faustian wanting magician and ‘cult’ chief Julian Karswell (Nial MacGinnis). In a single sequence Karswell dressed as Dr Bobo performs magic at a youngsters’s occasion. The dialog which then ensues between the psychologist and the magician holds within it a number of performance frames and concepts for budding bizarrists out there!. Tourneur apparently by no means needed the audience to ‘see’ the demon. I some ways I wish he had had his means. The film could be even creepier and scarier if the terror was left to the imagination – once more bizarre magicians take word!
The Magician (1958) directed by Ingmar Bergman. The one purpose that movie is exterior the highest ten is due to the possibility of being thought-about as being ‘pretentious’ if it is placed the place I think it belongs – in the highest 5 not less than! Max von Sydow plays a travelling magician and ‘magnetic-healer’ (harkening back to the times of Mesmer) caught up in a tale about prejudice, honesty, the category system and….. well the entire thing is multilayered. Sydow is brilliant, he hardly ever speaks, and Bergman’s visuals are nice. The movie has been referred to as a ‘pondering mans horror movie/. It’s creepy surreal and brilliantly acted and directed.
The nice Buck Howard (2008) directed by Sean McGinly is constructed round John Malkovich’s character who’s in flip based mostly upon the mentalist Kreskin.
Subsequent (2007) directed by Lee Tamahori sees Nicholas Cage as a man who can see a couple of minutes into the future and disguises his gift by working as a lounge magician. Cage is seen as another sort of ‘magician’ in the fantasy movie The Sorcerers Apprentice (2010 directed by Jon Turtletaub) which makes direct references to the Disney Sorcerers Apprentice in Fantasia.
Magic Man (2010) directed by Roscoe Lever stars Billy Zane who performs Darius, the Magic Man of the title. Billed as a thriller, this film hasn’t acquired the best of opinions. As I’ve not seen it but I can not comment – however possibly a future evaluate of this listing might see it included.
So onto the top Ten
10. Excelsior Prince of Magicians 1901 directed by Georges Melies. This pioneer of film making was a magician earlier than turning his hand to cine-magic. He produced many quick films of which this is just one, however many of which featured film variations of stage tips that magicians would love to be ready to truly do. He was certainly one of the primary movie makers to function stop body, time lapse and a number of exposures. He additionally hand painted lots of the black and white movies he shot. A true innovator.
9. The Grim Sport 1919 directed by Irvin Wilat. Not the greatest of motion pictures to observe, however from a magician’s viewpoint a should. It featured Harry Houdini in the title position showcasing his feats of escapology. Houdini, not solely an important magician however an incredible entrepreneur embraced early cinema however to be quite trustworthy he made little lasting contribution to cinematic art. In some methods, perhaps, Melies earlier ‘trick photography’ lessened some of the dramatic impact Houdini’s reside performances will have had.
Eight. Lord of Illusions (1995) directed by Clive Barker and based mostly on his novel of the same title. This film is notable for its magical references. Not solely does the ‘evil’ lead character Nix have supernatural powers, but his disciples have them. One in every of his disciples, Swann, after Nix’s early demise (previous to his later resurrection) uses his magical powers to grow to be a preferred illusionist. The staged magic sequences are well achieved, there is a cameo look by the good Billy McCombe and the Magic Castle is represented as a spot of secrets. The essential idea that ‘magic is a harmful reality’ is a superb theme for the Bizarre Magicians out there.
7. Cast a Deadly Spell (1991) directed by Martin Cambell, sees Detective, Harry Philip Lovecraft (played by Fred Ward) residing in a 1940’s Los Angeles where magic is frequent place. He is recruited by a wealthy man to discover a lost guide – yeap, you have obtained it… The Necronomicon! It’s really a Bogart-esque movie-noire with a magical flavour, after all by definition then there are magicians. It’s witty, enjoyable and full of Lovecraftian references. Sadly on the time of writing it, in contrast to its less sharp sequel (Witch Hunt) isn’t accessible for purchase on DVD.
Witch Hunt (1994) directed Paul Schrader. A sequel to Cast a Deadly Spell wherein detective, H. Phillip Lovecraft played by Dennis Hopper combats the evils and corruption of a magic wielding senator. As a sequel not shoddy, however perhaps not quite as enjoyable as the primary movie.
6. The great Kandinski (1995) directed by Terry Windsor. This ‘made for Tv’ movie should be included in this list, not only for its charm and humour, however for its sensitivities. Richard Harris (whose work is admirable) performs a retired escapologist living in a nursing dwelling. The story revolves round Kandiski’s need to ‘chase yet one more secret’ and do one ‘closing present’. The escape featured is Houdini’s Water Torture cell, which is a testomony to the iconic nature of that one illusion.
5. Nightmare Alley (1947) directed by Edmund Goulding. A powerful film and perhaps one of many all time best examples of movie noire. Tyrone Power plays a ‘psychic con man’ Stanton Carlyle whose trail of deceit and self deceit take from rags to riches to rags. In fact the magicians out there will instantly see a hyperlink to a performer who used to exit below the title Rinaldo, but was better recognized professionally and now to mentalists’ world vast as Stanton Carlisle. (1928 – 1990). Stanton insisted, despite many good natured challenges, that that was his real title and was not influenced by the Goulding movie.
Four. House of Video games (1978) directed by David Mamet. Ok not likely a magic movie, but features a efficiency of considered one of my all time magic heroes, Ricky Jay. Ricky is one among a group of con-men in this Hitchcockesque thriller. Mamet, as all the time does an incredible job in capturing mood and the film explores human motivations and behaviours. Ricky Jay is in fact no stranger to the big display, with roles within the Bond Movie, Tomorrow Never Dies, Magnolia, Buck Howard, The Prestige and many more. This, I consider nevertheless was his first venture onto the ‘huge screen’
three. Houdini (1953) directed by George Marshall with Tony Curtis in as Houdini. This movie does have too much to reply for in that it creates some of the longer lasting myths in regards to the life of the genuinely ‘mythic’ Houdini. His demise on stage as a result of performing the ‘water torture cell’ shouldn’t be truth, however the movie certainly hints at it. The ‘brush with dying’ in a frozen river; the first efficiency of the ‘straight jacket’ at a Magicians Society dinner almost certainly never happened – however the romance and innocence of the moment saves it. The magical advisor on this film was Dunninger.
I suppose it’s price mentioning in passing that in 1998 there was a Tv movie about Houdini (directed by Pen Denshem) and an earlier attempt at a biopic remake in 1976 with Paul Michael Glaser within the title function (directed for tv by Melvile Shavelson). The film Demise Defying Acts (2007) directed by Gillian Armstrong focuses on Houdini’s documented curiosity in mediums and psychics and he is admittedly the vehicle by way of which another story may be told.
2. Magic (1978) directed by Richard Attenborough and staring Anthony Hopkins. In the film Hopkins’ character starts out as a magician, however sees success as a ventriloquist. The movie charts the fall into insanity as the connection Hopkins has together with his dummy ‘Fats’. It is a classic movie with a number of the creepier overtones being softened by, what some declare to be, slower sequences of sentimentality.
1. The Illusionist (2006) directed by Neil Burger and staring Ed Norton. The pace and the texture of this movie is fantastic. It’s a love story with some great performances from a very good cast. The magical advice came from Ricky Jay and Michael Webber. Norton as Eisenhiem is the ideal stage magician. The cinematography is sensible, the plot properly involved and with, maybe a number of surprises.
1. The Prestige (2006) directed by Christopher Nolan. While The Illusionist is sumptuous and engaging and at its core ‘hopeful’ and ‘romantic’, The Prestige is darker and deals with revenge, envy and competitiveness. Nice performances from Hugh Jackman and Christian Bale because the feuding magicians every with a ‘secret’ and a narrative that is non-linear make the movie partaking and nicely definitely worth the little effort it’s worthwhile to sustain with the tangled web of intrigue. The ‘prestige’, the finale of the film, contains revelations that may shock. Clever scripting brings the emotional tension to life and the rich magical references (Chung Ling Soo, The Bullet Catch, The Water Torture) make this movie a must for magicians. Ricky Jay appears as a longtime stage performer and Michael Caine is nice as the illusion builder – although I might never ask him to construct me a vanishing hen cage!
I actually can’t separate these two movies by way of high quality of acting, course and story so that they share first place billing with the much less severe….
Magicians (2007) really deserves a Gold Star in this listing. Directed by Andrew O Connor and with script written in collaboration with David Britland, Andy Nyman and Anthony Owen and others it is a magical tour de power. Choosing a comic look at the world of the conjuror, Magicians, sees Mitchell and Webb rattle via some nice one-liners; pay homage to some key magicians and have a real knock at among the oddness that is an element and parcel of the magic scene. The nice Pat Web page makes an tony stark iron man t shirt design appearance, and a lot of the magic ‘stalls’ at the magic convention hosting the competition at the centre of the movies plot had been supplied by well-known magic dealers.
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