There's a charming simplicity to THE ILLUSIONIST which has suffered repeated comparison to Nolan's serpentine PRESTIGE. A beautifully-shot period romance that unwisely switches to mystery mode, it contains two very good things. First: Rufus Sewell's quietly explosive portrayal of tragic Prince Leopold who is, in my mind, unfairly maligned as villain by a creepy magician (Ed Norton). And second: Philip Glass.
Continues the contemporary, predictable and trite shyamalan tradition of "surprising twist at the end". there's nothing particularly significant in the premise nor the results, aside from a good cinematography and score.
"Have we not each experienced the sensation that a beautiful moment seemed to pass to quickly, and wished that we could make it linger? Or felt time slow on a dull day, and wished that we could speed things up a bit?" -Eisenehim
Really beautiful film with a fun and thrilling story. Sort of easy to call the ending but at the journey was entertaining and the acting was great. The scene capture above might be the best moment of the film.
It's a movie about illusions, but the first half is mostly flat melodrama that bored me. Even the magic tricks didn't seem that impressive (probably because they were CGI). When a murder's thrown in the mix, things finally get interesting, but the third act pulls a twist ending out of nowhere and to me it felt forced and too convenient. The acting was fine, but I wouldn't recommend it.
An enjoyable story with excellent sets and a nice semi-twist in the tale. Unfortunately it skirts the edge of CG versus real illusion a little too often taking away the authenticity when it was needed most. That said, the scene where Giamatti's character unfolds the deception is a moment of real magic.