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The Magician (1958)

Ansiktet (original title)
Approved | | Comedy, Drama | 27 August 1959 (USA)
When 'Vogler's Magnetic Health Theater' comes to town, there's bound to be a spectacle. Reading reports of a variety of supernatural disturbances at Vogler's prior performances abroad, the ... See full summary »

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Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 3 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Albert Emanuel Vogler
...
Manda Vogler (alias Mr. Aman)
...
Dr. Vergerus, Minister of Health
Naima Wifstrand ...
Granny Vogler
...
Johan Spegel
...
Sara Lindqvist
Gertrud Fridh ...
Ottilia Egerman
Lars Ekborg ...
Simson, the coach driver
Toivo Pawlo ...
Police Superintendant Starbeck
...
Consul Egerman
Åke Fridell ...
Tubal
Sif Ruud ...
Sofia Garp
Oscar Ljung ...
Antonsson, burly stableman
Ulla Sjöblom ...
Henrietta Starbeck
Axel Düberg ...
Rustan, young manservant
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Storyline

When 'Vogler's Magnetic Health Theater' comes to town, there's bound to be a spectacle. Reading reports of a variety of supernatural disturbances at Vogler's prior performances abroad, the leading townspeople (including the police chief and medical examiner) request that their troupe provide them a sample of their act, before allowing them public audiences. The scientific-minded disbelievers try to expose them as charlatans, but Vogler and his crew prove too clever for them. Written by Tad Dibbern <DIBBERN_D@a1.mscf.upenn.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

A haunting journey into the netherworld between reality and the unknown. See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

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Release Date:

27 August 1959 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Magician  »

Company Credits

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Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Distantly inspired by G.K. Chesterton's play "Magic" which was a favorite of Ingmar Bergman's. He staged a theater production of that play in Swedish. See more »

Quotes

Johan Spegel: You want to record the precise moment. Observe carefully. I will keep my face open to your curiosity. What am I feeling? Fear and well-being. Now death has reached my hands, my arms, my feet, my belly. I can't see anymore. I'm dead. You're wondering. I'll tell you. Death is...
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Connections

Referenced in Siskel & Ebert: Remembering Gene Siskel (1999) See more »

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User Reviews

 
"Light" Bergman?
7 August 2011 | by (Salisbury, United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

Some reviewers have set themselves out to compare The Magician squarely against Ingmar's previous two masterpieces, The Seventh Seal and Wild Strawberries and mark The Magician down, unfairly. It almost cannot be possible to attain the dizzy heights of adulation of those two and as such, we are treated something lighter and possibly, more enjoyable.

Mr Bergman, in his long illustrious career covered many types of subjects. Starting with straightforward and rather dull dramas, through kitchen-sink (Ikea style?!!) and onto the darker shades of human psychology. And beyond, sometimes.

The Seventh Seal succeeded due to its extraordinary storytelling and imagery - along with just about everything else. Wild Strawberries due to its poignancy and leading performances that resonated with a sense of recognition and support in its audience. Other titles offer dark, deep blackly brooding death obsessed monologues that brush against exquisite period dramas of superb detail and cinematography.

The Magician, though has always been one of my favourites. Neither comedy nor horror film but light, often humorous drama that touches upon the Wonder in us all. We all want to see behind a master of illusion and the mixture of nostalgia, set in the comparatively fairytale setting of Scandinavia. I almost find it more akin to Conan Doyle than the witch- hunting or almost unfathomable symbolisms found in many other Bergman's.

As Bergman is one of my favourite directors of all time, warts and all and have 47 of his films I'd say this has much to offer, both to fans such as myself as well being good family entertainment that strengthens his cinematic arsenal, not weakens it.


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