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The Illusionist (2010)
"L'illusionniste" (original title)

7.5
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Ratings: 7.5/10 from 23,907 users   Metascore: 82/100
Reviews: 92 user | 206 critic | 31 from Metacritic.com

A French illusionist finds himself out of work and travels to Scotland, where he meets a young woman. Their ensuing adventure changes both their lives forever.

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(adaptation), (original screenplay)
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Title: The Illusionist (2010)

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 7 wins & 23 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview:
Jean-Claude Donda ...
The Illusionist / French Cinema Manager (voice)
Eilidh Rankin ...
Alice (voice)
Duncan MacNeil ...
Additional Voices (voice)
Raymond Mearns ...
Additional Voices (voice)
James T. Muir ...
Additional Voices (voice)
Tom Urie ...
Additional Voices (voice)
...
Additional Voices (voice)
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Storyline

Details the story of a dying breed of stage entertainer whose thunder is being stolen by emerging rock stars. Forced to accept increasingly obscure assignments in fringe theaters, garden parties and bars, he meets a young fan who changes his life forever. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for thematic elements and smoking | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

|

Release Date:

16 June 2010 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Illusionisten  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office

Budget:

£11,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$38,594 (USA) (24 December 2010)

Gross:

$2,231,024 (USA) (6 May 2011)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

, ,  »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

|

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

When Jacques tries to hide from the girl, he ends up in a theater, The Cameo, where Mon Oncle (1958) by Jacques Tati is shown. "L'illusionniste"'s script was first written by Tati, whose figure and character was taken to create the main character Jacques Tatischeff (Tati's original name). See more »

Goofs

Despite being set in 1959/1960, the Scottish Police motorcycles have 'American-style' sirens, which were not introduced until the 1980s. See more »

Crazy Credits

At the end of the final credits, there's a short bonus scene. See more »

Connections

References Jour de Fete (1949) See more »

Soundtracks

My Girl Blue
Written & Composed by Malcolm Ross
Published by Django Films Ltd
Performed by Malcolm Ross, Ian Stoddart, and Leo Condie aka - "The Britoons"
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Broken Enchantments
21 June 2010 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

Since the post-WWII wave of neo-realism, filmmakers have been exploring the beauty within the recesses of the urban landscape. The Italians had Rome's 'any space whatever'; the French New Wave caressed Paris; Woody penned his love letter to Manhattan, Spike wrote his to Brooklyn; Jean-Pierre did Montmartre; John Hughes did Chicago; and now with 'L'illsionniste' Sylvain Chomet has Edinburgh. The film is, indeed, bestowed with loving detail upon Scotland's capitol. Sadly, the narrative providing the means for discovering the city imparts a final impression of cold disillusionment that starkly contrasts with the city that I've come to know in the last three years.

Chomet tells the story of an aging slight-of-hand magician -- a cartoon of an already cartoonish M. Hulot -- who takes his outdated stage act from Paris to Scotland's Hebrides isles. His magic and kindness inspires a naïve young maiden to tag-along with him and the two find themselves in Edinburgh. The remainder of the film is a coming-of-age story for both characters: a slowly paced, melancholy journey of economic hardship and broken enchantments. The city crushes the magic and mystery of life, leaving the viewer with an acute sense of doomed mortality.

Of course, glimpses of brilliance can be found. The animation medium befits the Jacques Tati character as well as Edinburgh itself, and Chomet's restrained style teases out the occasional smile from the ordinary moments of life. Unfortunately what is missing is the very thing I love most about the city: its people. Edinburgh is a city of extraordinary people and heritage. It seems then, that though Chomet's heartfelt intention was to show off the city he calls home, he failed to recognise its most remarkable asset. It's the people that give life to Edinburgh and without this city of endless stone does indeed seem cold. Had Chomet focused more on the characters' interactions with the residents as opposed to themselves, I think the film would have better communicated a stirring sense of hope and quiet pride that would have left the viewer with a greater desire for and appreciation of the city of Edinburgh.


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