Thomas is 25, jobless, living with his parents - trying to be a magician. He's smitten by Monika, a new neighbor who's a doctor at the hospital where they take his mom when one of his tricks goes awry. She seems out of his league, but she invites him to perform at a child's party. He begs his skeptical father to let him perform at dad's 60th birthday. Monika is in the audience. Breaking a promise to his father, Thomas attempts the trick that nearly killed his mother: swords through a box inside of which is a volunteer. With family, friends, and Monika watching, will it go well, will he make a good impression, or is too much beyond his control? Written by
"Instead of Abracadabra" is a very funny short film about a lovable loser who lives with his parents but fancies himself a great magician of "gothic mystery and mayhem" and has developed a catch phrase of "Chimay!" as an alternative to abracadabra. His parents want him to get a real job but he wants to impress the single mom next door by performing first at her child's birthday party, and then at his father's 60th birthday get-together. The first trick we see him do goes horribly awry and much of the film is spent grimacing in anticipation of similarly catastrophic outcomes from his dangerous and elaborate magic tricks. This film has some Napoleon Dynamite-type elements of humor, some big laughs, and a couple good twists toward the end.
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