Best Movies You’ve Never Seen About Magicians

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Richard Stokes
Posts: 199
Joined: September 11th, 2008, 8:18 pm

Best Movies You’ve Never Seen About Magicians

Postby Richard Stokes » May 20th, 2020, 1:33 pm

Thanks for that list.
And the other embedded list.

For me the saddest commentary on performance can be found in the Coen Brothers' "The Ballad of Buster Scruggs" (on Netflix).
I'm referring to the section called Meal Ticket where a travelling legless, armless actor recites famous verses such as Ozymandias in return for handouts, all of which go to his boss. Their lives are changed when they come across a performing chicken that can accomplish basic maths - addition and subtraction. This chicken attracts larger crowds and tantalisingly offers the prospect of rich rewards...

The same idiotic values seem to dominate shows like Britain's/America's Got Talent?

ejay1118
Posts: 7
Joined: May 23rd, 2014, 8:55 pm
Favorite Magician: Mark Wilson

Re: Best Movies You’ve Never Seen About Magicians

Postby ejay1118 » December 10th, 2020, 2:22 pm

I've been asked why I don't go on "America's Got Talent," (or, in the case of my singing; "The Voice.") the REAL answer is that I'm not as good as they seem to think I am, but what I say is; "I don't have a tragic enough backstory to possibly win."

Joe Mckay
Posts: 1910
Joined: April 13th, 2008, 6:56 am
Favorite Magician: Lubor Fiedler
Location: Durham, England

Re: Best Movies You’ve Never Seen About Magicians

Postby Joe Mckay » December 11th, 2020, 2:57 pm

One of my favourite movies is Rope by Alfred Hitchcock. I remember Penn Jillette saying it was his favourite movie as well.

It is the only movie I have seen that plays out like a series of small magic tricks. It is delightfully ingenious. I must have watched it a hundred times now.

The plot is simple.

Two friends decide to carry out the perfect murder. And then hide the body in the middle of the room as they host a party and invite the victim's friends and family.

It is all filmed in a single shot from a single camera as well. Although due to technical limitations back then (movie reels had to be changed every ten minutes) - the movie actually consists of about 9 ten-minute scenes with a cut that is disguised as the camera switches from one roll to another.

I think it is easily Hitchock's best film. But I never seem to find anyone else who agrees with me on that.

Bill Mullins
Posts: 5536
Joined: January 17th, 2008, 12:00 pm
Location: Huntsville, AL

Re: Best Movies You’ve Never Seen About Magicians

Postby Bill Mullins » December 11th, 2020, 3:25 pm

I think it is easily Hitchock's best film. But I never seem to find anyone else who agrees with me on that.


That's because it isn't even in Hitch's top five. Heck, just in the 1950s alone, he did six movies that exceed it: Strangers on a Train, Dial M for Murder, Rear Window, To Catch a Thief, Vertigo, North by Northwest. Seven, if you count Psycho which was partially filmed in the 1950s.

The problem with Rope is the gimmick you allude to. It takes you out of the movie to watch for the cuts. And I say that as someone who really enjoys a good long-take shot*. But they don't typically make a movie better; the are virtuoso demonstrations of filmmaking. "Hey, Look at Me!" If a director does that, it better deliver.

*For example, I just saw Extraction not long ago. Perfectly fine B-movie, but there's a 11-1/2 minute "oner" that is unbelieveable. Worth finding just to watch that one sequence.


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