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Movie Review: The Illusionist

April 16, 2011

MrsDoF and I went to see Sylvian Chomet’s animated film The Illusionist at the historic Normal Theater this evening:

The little YouTube clips do it no justice: this is a stunningly beautiful film. You’ll just about hurt yourself trying to drink it all in; to study scenes as they pass by, and impress them into your visual memory. Some of the Scottish countryside scenes I’d like to make 2-meter dye-transfer prints and put them on walls like a gallery. (Yes I was thinking of you WeeDram)

There isn’t much story here: an aging itinerant magician unexpectedly acquires a waif who becomes like a surrogate daughter to him. Despite his denials she thinks he really can do magic.

But there is magic in the lovingly detailed visual beauty of the film. There is almost no dialog at all; it could play anywhere without any need of subtitles. It’s delightful and melancholy (but sweet in places) and an artistic masterpiece. See it on the biggest screen you can find.

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  1. BD
    April 18, 2011 at 08:15 | #1

    Oh my yes, The Illusionist was a thing of beauty with a great story, it was what I wanted to win the Oscar for best animated movie.

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