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Houdini (1953)

 -  Biography | Drama  -  2 July 1953 (USA)
6.9
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Ratings: 6.9/10 from 2,001 users  
Reviews: 30 user | 12 critic

The spectacular but tragically short career of magician and illusionist Harry Houdini whose tricks defied explanation and safety.

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(screenplay), (book)
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Houdini (TV Mini-Series 2014)
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Follow the man behind the magic as he finds fame, engages in espionage, battles spiritualists and encounters the greatest names of the era, from U.S. presidents to Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and Grigori Rasputin.

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A fantasy that recasts Harry Houdini as a spy for Britain and a debunker of con artists.

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
Torin Thatcher ...
Otto
Angela Clarke ...
Harry's Mother
...
German Prosecuting Attorney
...
Malue
Sig Ruman ...
Schultz
...
Dooley
Connie Gilchrist ...
Mrs. Shultz
Malcolm Lee Beggs ...
British Jail Warden
Frank Orth ...
Mr. Hunter
Barry Bernard ...
Insp. Marlick
Douglas Spencer ...
Simms
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Storyline

The amazing career of master magician Harry Houdini is presented from his beginnings with a carnival "wild man" act to his emergence as an internationally-acclaimed illusionist, From his dramatic escape from a locked safe under the frozen Detroit River to an even more improbable one from a locked cell in Scotland Yard, he never failed to please and astound his audiences. Although Houdini's tricks are achieved through his marvelous physical dexterity and innate sleight-of-hand, he courted death with the hazardous illusions he performed and his compulsive quest to make contact with the spirit world. Written by duke1029@aol.com

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Biography | Drama

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

2 July 1953 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El gran Houdini  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Harry Houdini's real name was Weiss (the German word for the color white), and he is played here by Tony Curtis, whose real name is Schwartz (schwarz is the German word for the color black). See more »

Goofs

When the Houdinis and the reporter are being driven to the séance, the same rear projection loop is continually run in the car's back window, repeatedly showing the same background traffic, with the splice where the loop begins plainly visible each time. See more »

Quotes

Harry Houdini: It'll be the most dangerous thing I've ever done.
Bess Houdini: And the most dangerous!
Harry Houdini: Bess, people aren't going to stand in line and watch me pull rabbits out of a hat.
Bess Houdini: Why? Why must every act you do be flirting with death?
Harry Houdini: Because it's the only act that'll hold an audience spellbound. People fall asleep at the opera, but they stay wide awake at the bullfights because ther's one man defying death down in that arena. You take this out of my act and I'm nothing!
Bess Houdini: You keep it in and we're both nothing!
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In: Episode #3.26 (1970) See more »

Soundtracks

Meet Me Tonight in Dreamland
(uncredited)
Music by Leo Friedman
Played during the opening credits
Played often in the score as the love theme
See more »

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User Reviews

Who cares if it isn't accurate, it sure is fun!!
17 October 2004 | by (Morgans Point Resort, TX) – See all my reviews

If it wasn't for the movies and the books on Harry Houdini's life he would fall into a category of un-interesting performers who only could do one thing perform

He lived in a time where his talents were in great demand and despite the fact that this film is not accurate it is lovingly presented by Paramount a **Color Film** in a time where Black and White films were still commonplace, Tony Curtis and Janet Leigh at the peak of their building careers and George Marshall a veteran director of close to 120 films

They knew what they were doing when the movie partially fictionalized Houdini's life possibly because he was a one note person, a magician, an escape artist, a performer

The movie is excellent!! and that is all that matters, if I am not mistaken almost every remake has fictionalized his life in one way or another, this movie is a true gem!!


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