The Illusionist

NOTHING IS WHAT IT SEEMS.

In turn-of-the-century Vienna, the illusionist Eisenheim (Edward Norton) impresses and upsets the royal court, including the woman (Jessica Biel) set to marry the Crown Prince (Rufus Sewell). Philip Glass’s spellbinding music and Dick Pope’s shadowy, autumnal cinematography enshroud this intriguing tale of love, power and magic. A good cast, although no one in particular stands out; the most interesting character is the arrogant but weak crown prince. The story takes a while before it engages our emotions; unsurprisingly enough, there’s a magical twist in the end.

2006-U.S. 109 min. Color. Written and directed by Neil Burger. Short Story: Steven Millhauser (“Eisenheim the Illusionist“). Cinematography: Dick Pope. Music: Philip Glass. Cast: Edward Norton (Edward “Eisenheim” Abramowitz), Paul Giamatti (Uhl), Jessica Biel (Sophie Von Teschen), Rufus Sewell, Eddie Marsan, Jake Wood.

Trivia: Liv Tyler was allegedly first hired for the part of Sophie.

 

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