Up 14,044 this week

A Turn of the Century Illusionist (1899)
"L'impressionniste fin de siècle" (original title)

 -  Short
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 6.6/10 from 509 users  
Reviews: 4 user | 2 critic

Add a Plot


0Check in

On Disc

at Amazon

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 2372 titles
created 17 Jul 2011
a list of 608 titles
created 07 Mar 2012
list image
a list of 173 titles
created 13 Apr 2012
a list of 1608 titles
created 09 Jan 2013
a list of 282 titles
created 7 months ago

Related Items

Connect with IMDb

Share this Rating

Title: A Turn of the Century Illusionist (1899)

A Turn of the Century Illusionist (1899) on IMDb 6.6/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of A Turn of the Century Illusionist.
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

This is altogether a remarkable picture and of very fine photographic value. It shows a picturesque country road, down which comes a two-seated automobile carrying four people. As the ... See full summary »

Director: Cecil M. Hepworth
Stars: Cecil M. Hepworth, Henry Lawley
Documentary | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.3/10 X  

Walking four abreast, in groups of six rows, 144 of Chicago's finest parade past a stationary camera. Each of the six groups that pass is escorted by an officer. All are men, all are white,... See full summary »

Director: Alexandre Promio
Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

One of the greatest of black art pictures. The conjurer appears before the audience, with his head in its proper place. He then removes his head, and throwing it in the air, it appears on ... See full summary »

Director: Georges Méliès
Stars: Georges Méliès
Short | Adventure | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

Using every known means of transportation, several savants from the Geographic Society undertake a journey through the Alps to the Sun which finishes under the sea.

Director: Georges Méliès
Stars: Georges Méliès
Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A band-leader assembles an orchestra by mystifying means.

Director: Georges Méliès
Stars: Georges Méliès
The Kiss (1900)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.4/10 X  

Nothing new, but an old thing done over again and done well. Some one has attempted to describe a kiss as "something made of nothing," but this is not one of that kind, but one of those old... See full summary »

Director: Edwin S. Porter
Stars: Fred Ott
Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

A man dreams he is flirting with an attractive young lady, then he wakes up in bed next to his wife.

Director: George Albert Smith
Stars: Laura Bayley, Tom Green
Documentary | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  
Director: Louis Lumière
Documentary | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  
Director: Louis Lumière
Danse serpentine II (1896)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  
Director: Louis Lumière
Stars: Loie Fuller
Short | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  
Director: Georges Méliès
Stars: Georges Méliès


Credited cast:


Add Full Plot | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:







Also Known As:

A Turn of the Century Illusionist  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

See  »

Did You Know?


Featured in Special Effects: Anything Can Happen (1996) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Good effort by the french Cinemagician

French film pioneer Georges Méliès began his career as a filmmaker in 1896, just a few months after watching motion pictures for the first time in his life. Being a stage magician himself, he quickly noticed the enormous potential the new invention had as a form of entertainment, and immediately after the show made an offer to buy the Lumières' Cinématographe. The brothers refused, but that didn't stop Méliès, who decided to make his own devises based on the brother's work and the Bioscope camera. Soon he was making his own short movies, and while at first he copied the themes the Lumières had in their actuality films, he also started to make short fiction movies, often comedies and fantasy films. His movies would become legendary when he started to use his discoveries in the field of special effects in his films, earning himself the nickname of "Cinemagician" due to the spectacular effects of his fantasy tales.

While famous for his tales of fantasy, horror and science fiction, many of Méliès' early films were shorts about him, the magician, making an impossible trick on camera. "L' Impressionniste Fin De Siècle" (literally, "The Impressionist of the End of the Century", although better known as "A Turn of the Century Illusionist"), is one of those short movies, as the film is about a magician (Méliès) making a supernatural trick of disappearance. First, the magician makes a doll come to life to be his assistant (probably his wife), and then makes her to vanish in thin air. Then, the magician lifts a barrel that he has on a table and the woman appears inside. After that, the magician turns his assistant into confetti before covering himself with the same magic blanket he used before. But that's not all, after the magician disappears, a series of fantastic tricks transformations will take place as the magician is able now to transform himself into his assistant.

Across his career, Méliès made many of this kind of "gimmick films", both to test his own tricks and to add some variety to his screenings. As one of those movies, "L' Impressionniste Fin De Siècle" is entirely based on the stop trick to make the illusion of things transforming and vanishing. It is certainly not the most sophisticated of his many tricks, but among his early films it is in this movie where his stop trick looks the best. In 1899 it was definitely a complicated trick to do at high speeds, but Méliès achieves a very fluid work of editing that allows him to use it even when his characters are running and jumping without looking too fake. The effects of the many disappearances, done in his purest stage magician style, are still amazing even now, more than 100 years after the shooting of the movie.

"L' Impressionniste Fin De Siècle" is probably not the most impressive of the Cinemagician's films, but like most of his movies, it carries that special something, that magic that makes them so fun to watch. 1899 would be an important year of many changes for Méliès, as it was that year when he released his classic, "Cendrillon" ("Cinderella"), and started his most popular period. Both as an experiment and as a charming entertainment, "L' Impressionniste Fin De Siècle" is a very successful film and offered a glimpse of what the Cinemagician had in the bag. 7/10

4 of 5 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Discuss A Turn of the Century Illusionist (1899) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: