IMDb > Deceptive Practice: The Mysteries and Mentors of Ricky Jay (2012)

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Ricky Jay is a world-renowned magician, author, historian and actor (often a mischievous presence in... See more » | Add synopsis »
NewsDesk:
Dreyfuss, Gilliam to attend Glasgow
 (From ScreenDaily. 5 February 2014, 3:51 AM, PST)

User Reviews:
Now You Don't See Him... See more (6 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order)

Ricky Jay ... Himself
Winston Simon ... Himself - Ricky Jay's Manager

Dick Cavett ... Himself - Narrator (voice)

David Mamet ... Himself - Writer & Director
Persi Diaconis ... Himself - Professor of Statistics and Mathematics, Stanford University
Michael Weber ... Himself - Ricky Jay's Partner
Fred Neumann ... Himself - Deputy Sheriff, Los Angeles County Sheriff's Office
Suzie Mackenzie ... Herself - Journalist, The Guardian
Chrisann Verges ... Herself - Ricky Jay's Wife
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Roy Benson ... Himself - Magician (archive footage)
Francis Carlyle ... Himself - Magician (archive footage) (voice)
Al Flosso ... Himself - Magician (archive footage)
Al Hirschfeld ... Himself - Artist (archive footage)

Steve Martin ... Himself - Comedian (archive footage)
Charlie Miller ... Himself - Magician (archive footage)
Richard Valentine Pitchford ... Himself - Magician (archive footage) (as Cardini)
David Roth ... Himself - Magician (archive footage)

Dinah Shore ... Himself - Television Hostess (archive footage)
Tony Slydini ... Himself - Magician (archive footage) (as Slydini)
Dai Vernon ... Himself - Magician (archive footage)

Directed by
Molly Bernstein 
 
Produced by
Peter Block .... co-executive producer
Philip Dolan .... producer
Alan Edelstein .... producer
Cathy Greenwold .... executive producer
Alicia Sams .... producer
David Simone .... associate producer
Winston Simone .... associate producer
 
Original Music by
Clare Manchon (co-composer) (as Clare Muldaur)
Olivier Manchon 
 
Cinematography by
Ed Marritz 
 
Art Direction by
Matt Garton 
 
Sound Department
Paul Hsu .... sound re-recording mixer
Deborah Wallach .... sound editor
 
Visual Effects by
Matt Garton .... motion graphics and title design
 
Camera and Electrical Department
Dave Dodds .... additional camera
 
Animation Department
Liesje Kraai .... additional graphics
Richard O'Connor .... additional graphics
Kelsey Stark .... additional graphics
 
Editorial Department
John Dowdell .... digital intermediate colorist
Boon Shin Ng .... finishing artist
 
Thanks
Paul Thomas Anderson .... special thanks
Dan Chariton .... special thanks
Stan Coleman .... special thanks
Terry Gross .... special thanks
Bill Kalush .... special thanks
David Rakoff .... special thanks
David Roth .... special thanks
Adam Schlesinger .... special thanks
Coco Shinomiya .... special thanks
Chrisann Verges .... special thanks
Scott Verges .... special thanks
David Wilson .... special thanks
 

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6 out of 10 people found the following review useful.
Now You Don't See Him..., 11 May 2013
Author: soncoman from United States

Just caught this it the 56th San Francisco International Film Festival. Jay is one of the more interesting hybrid entertainers (magician/actor/author) of the last few decades so I welcomed the opportunity to get a peek "inside the box".

The film is aptly titled, as you do get a fascinating look at the influences on Jay's career. Their names alone (Cardini, Slydini, Al Flosso – The Coney Island Fakir) give you some of idea of the characters that Jay surrounded himself with early in his career. Lots of archival footage of these masters at work, along with Jay's early television appearances (including a REALLY early live TV appearance in 1953 performing magic) provide much of the back story as to how Jay got to where he is today.

The greatest influence on Jay may have been his grandfather, Max Katz, an amateur magician who introduced his grandson to the art and some of its great practitioners. His passing, and apparently some significant rift in his familial relationships, lead Jay to strike out on his own and go from "Ricky Potash" to "Ricky Jay." This rift is unexplored in the film and may be one of the "mysteries" the film title references. Also left relatively unexplored is Jay's career as a character actor, though David Mamet is one of several folks interviewed. Mamet has directed several of Jay's one-man shows, but I would have liked to hear more about Jay's work as an actor.

The directors were present at the screening, and I asked them if Jay's personal life was off-limits to discussion. They responded that while he didn't specifically forbid the subject, he didn't make it easy on them either. I also asked if there was a story behind his surname change (from Potash to Jay), and whether it had anything to do with the family rift hinted at by the film. Their somewhat weak response was that was "something that performers often do" and I got the feeling it never occurred to them to research the change or its circumstances. A quick internet search indicates Jay is his middle name. Did they not know that?

As a record of some of the history of magic and its early performers, the film succeeds. As an examination of Jay as something more than a magician, the film leaves us in the dark. That may be just what Jay wanted.

www.worstshowontheweb.com

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