The Art of Misdirection! Movies and shows about magicians, prestidigitators etc.

by Mike_Noga | created - 12 Nov 2012 | updated - 18 Sep 2013 | Public
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1. Mandrake, the Magician (1939)

Approved | 215 min | Action, Adventure

Mandrake and his assistant Lothar are working the cruise lines and make the acquaintance of Professor Houston who has developed a radium energy machine, which is much coveted by a masked Crime Lord known as "The Wasp".

Directors: Norman Deming, Sam Nelson | Stars: Warren Hull, Doris Weston, Al Kikume, Rex Downing

Votes: 103

2. The Magician (1973–1974)

60 min | Adventure, Drama

The cases of a stage magician/escape artist who moonlights as an amateur crimefighter.

Stars: Bill Bixby, Julian Christopher, Keene Curtis, Joseph Sirola

Votes: 317

3. Houdini (1953)

Approved | 106 min | Biography, Drama

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

Director: George Marshall | Stars: Tony Curtis, Janet Leigh, Torin Thatcher, Angela Clarke

Votes: 2,546

4. Houdini (1998 TV Movie)

Unrated | 94 min | Biography, Drama, Romance

The life and times of escape artist/magician Harry Houdini.

Director: Pen Densham | Stars: Johnathon Schaech, Stacy Edwards, Paul Sorvino, Rhea Perlman

Votes: 420

5. The Great Houdini (1976 TV Movie)

120 min | Biography, Drama

A biography of the renowned escape artist Harry Houdini, examining his fascination with the occult and his promise to his wife on her deathbed that he would speak from the beyond.

Director: Melville Shavelson | Stars: Paul Michael Glaser, Sally Struthers, Ruth Gordon, Vivian Vance

Votes: 286

6. Walt Disney's Wonderful World of Color (1954–1991)
Episode: Young Harry Houdini (1987)

Unrated | 120 min | Adventure, Biography, Drama

This biographical movie depicts the youth of the magician Harry Houdini (1874 - 1926). As a boy his name was Eric Weiss and his father wanted him to become a locksmith. But he ran away and ... See full summary »

Director: James Orr | Stars: Wil Wheaton, Jeffrey DeMunn, Kerri Green, Barry Corbin

Votes: 119

8. The Master Mystery (1918)

Action, Adventure, Mystery

Justice Department agent Quentin Locke must investigate a powerful cartel protected by a robot (here referred to as "The Automaton") and using a gas weapon "The Madagascar Madness".

Directors: Harry Grossman, Burton L. King | Stars: Harry Houdini, Marguerite Marsh, Ruth Stonehouse, Edna Britton

Votes: 84

9. Chandu the Magician (1932)

Unrated | 71 min | Action, Adventure, Comedy

When delusional madman Roxor kidnaps a scientist in hopes of using his death ray to achieve world dominance, he is opposed by Chandu, a powerful hypnotist and yogi.

Directors: William Cameron Menzies, Marcel Varnel | Stars: Edmund Lowe, Irene Ware, Bela Lugosi, Herbert Mundin

Votes: 737

10. The Return of Chandu (I) (1934)

Not Rated | 208 min | Horror, Adventure, Fantasy

The Black Magic cult of Ubasti, based on the isle of Lemuria, believes that Nadji, a princess of Egypt, is a reincarnation of their long-dead goddess, Ossana, and intend to sacrifice Nadji ... See full summary »

Director: Ray Taylor | Stars: Bela Lugosi, Maria Alba, Clara Kimball Young, Lucien Prival

Votes: 203

11. Chandu on the Magic Island (1935)

Not Rated | 70 min | Fantasy, Adventure

On the mystic island of Lemuria, the cult of Ubasti seek the Egyptian Princess Nadji to sacrifice so that their goddess Ossana, whose soul resides in Nadji's body, may be resurrected by ... See full summary »

Director: Ray Taylor | Stars: Bela Lugosi, Maria Alba, Clara Kimball Young, Dean Benton

Votes: 112

12. Mandrake the Magician (1954 TV Movie)

26 min

Mandrake and Lothar battle enemy agents who have kidnapped the beautiful Princess Narda to force the magician to assist them locate a counter-intelligence agent who possess vital information.

Director: Will Jason | Stars: Coe Norton, Woody Strode, Lisa Howard, Robert Ellenstein

Votes: 16

14. The Illusionist (2006)

PG-13 | 110 min | Drama, Mystery, Romance

68 Metascore

In turn-of-the-century Vienna, a magician uses his abilities to secure the love of a woman far above his social standing.

Director: Neil Burger | Stars: Edward Norton, Jessica Biel, Paul Giamatti, Rufus Sewell

Votes: 325,594 | Gross: $39.87M

15. The Prestige (2006)

PG-13 | 130 min | Drama, Mystery, Sci-Fi

66 Metascore

After a tragic accident two stage magicians engage in a battle to create the ultimate illusion whilst sacrificing everything they have to outwit the other.

Director: Christopher Nolan | Stars: Christian Bale, Hugh Jackman, Scarlett Johansson, Michael Caine

Votes: 994,237 | Gross: $53.09M

16. Penn & Teller Get Killed (1989)

R | 89 min | Adventure, Comedy

Penn & Teller enjoy playing jokes on each other. When Penn says on an interview show that he wishes he has someone threatening his life so that he "wouldn't sweat the small stuff," each of ... See full summary »

Director: Arthur Penn | Stars: Penn Jillette, Teller, Caitlin Clarke, David Patrick Kelly

Votes: 1,603

17. The Wizard of Gore (1970)

Not Rated | 95 min | Horror

A TV talk-show hostess and her boyfriend investigate a shady magician whom has the ability to hypnotize and control the thoughts of people in order to stage gory on-stage illusions using his powers of mind bending.

Director: Herschell Gordon Lewis | Stars: Ray Sager, Judy Cler, Wayne Ratay, Phil Laurenson

Votes: 2,736

18. The Wizard of Gore (2007)

R | 94 min | Horror, Mystery

Montag the Magnificent (Glover) is a master illusionist who performs at underground venues, selecting female volunteers from his rave-like audiences. To their hysteria, it appears he's ... See full summary »

Director: Jeremy Kasten | Stars: Kip Pardue, Bijou Phillips, Crispin Glover, Jeffrey Combs

Votes: 2,491

19. The Great Buck Howard (2008)

PG | 90 min | Comedy, Drama

63 Metascore

A young man, much to the chagrin of his father, becomes the new assistant to an illusionist in decline.

Director: Sean McGinly | Stars: Colin Hanks, John Malkovich, Tom Hanks, Emily Blunt

Votes: 12,604 | Gross: $0.75M

20. The Mentalist (2008–2015)

TV-14 | 43 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

A famous "psychic" outs himself as a fake, and starts working as a consultant for the California Bureau of Investigation so he can find "Red John", the madman who killed his wife and daughter.

Stars: Simon Baker, Robin Tunney, Tim Kang, Owain Yeoman

Votes: 145,144

21. The Clairvoyant (1935)

TV-G | 81 min | Drama, Mystery, Romance

A fake music-hall clairvoyant meets a woman, and suddenly his predictions seem to come true ...

Director: Maurice Elvey | Stars: Claude Rains, Fay Wray, Mary Clare, Ben Field

Votes: 813

22. De illusionist (1983)

90 min | Comedy

At the center of this extremely visualized narrative are the illusionist and his brother, who is lazy on the basis of either great love, or exorbitant envy of the brother. Having spoiled ... See full summary »

Director: Jos Stelling | Stars: Freek de Jonge, Jim van der Woude, Catrien Wolthuizen, Gerard Thoolen

Votes: 587

23. L'illusionniste (2010)

PG | 80 min | Animation, Drama

82 Metascore

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.

Director: Sylvain Chomet | Stars: Jean-Claude Donda, Eilidh Rankin, Duncan MacNeil, Raymond Mearns

Votes: 30,701 | Gross: $2.23M

24. The Mad Magician (1954)

Unrated | 72 min | Horror, Mystery, Thriller

Don Gallico is a master at designing magical illusions which are sold by his employer, Mr. Ormond, to famous magicians such as Rinaldi. He is also a master of disguise and realistic mask ... See full summary »

Director: John Brahm | Stars: Vincent Price, Mary Murphy, Eva Gabor, John Emery

Votes: 1,155

25. Magic (1978)

R | 107 min | Drama, Horror

A ventriloquist is at the mercy of his vicious dummy while he tries to renew a romance with his high school sweetheart.

Director: Richard Attenborough | Stars: Anthony Hopkins, Ann-Margret, Burgess Meredith, Ed Lauter

Votes: 7,461

26. The Grim Game (1919)

71 min | Adventure, Drama

Jailed unjustly for a murder he did not commit, a young man uses his amazing powers of escape to free himself and pursue the actual killers, who hold his fiancée captive.

Director: Irvin Willat | Stars: Harry Houdini, Thomas Jefferson, Ann Forrest, Augustus Phillips

Votes: 215

27. Daai mo seut si (2011)

Not Rated | 128 min | Comedy, Drama, Mystery

In the years after the Revolution that overthrew the Qing Dynasty in China and established the republic, China broken up into fiefdoms held by warlords, who are busy fighting each other. A ... See full summary »

Director: Tung-Shing Yee | Stars: Tony Chiu-Wai Leung, Ching Wan Lau, Xun Zhou, Ni Yan

Votes: 1,342

28. The Escape Artist (1982)

PG | 94 min | Crime, Drama

The young and self-confident Danny blufs at the local police-station that he will escape out of prison within one hour. What follows is a flashback about his childhood with his uncle and ... See full summary »

Director: Caleb Deschanel | Stars: Raul Julia, Griffin O'Neal, Desi Arnaz, Teri Garr

Votes: 547 | Gross: $0.14M

29. Eternally Yours (1939)

Approved | 95 min | Comedy, Drama

Anita Halstead, swept off her feet by magician Arturo, finds the results less than magical.

Director: Tay Garnett | Stars: Loretta Young, David Niven, Hugh Herbert, Billie Burke

Votes: 528

30. The Magician (1958)

Not Rated | 101 min | Comedy, Drama

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 »

Director: Ingmar Bergman | Stars: Max von Sydow, Ingrid Thulin, Gunnar Björnstrand, Naima Wifstrand

Votes: 7,216

31. Hokkabaz (2006)

122 min | Comedy, Drama

Failed magician Iskender decides to do a tour to save his career, but has to bring his grumpy and senile father along. The tour is quite unexpectedly interrupted when a bride actually disappears from the stage.

Directors: Ali Taner Baltaci, Cem Yilmaz | Stars: Cem Yilmaz, Mazhar Alanson, Özlem Tekin, Tuna Orhan

Votes: 24,011

32. The Incredible Burt Wonderstone (2013)

PG-13 | 100 min | Adventure, Comedy, Fantasy

44 Metascore

A veteran Vegas magician tries to revive his career after his longtime partner quits, he gets fired from his casino act, and an edgy new "street magician" steals his thunder.

Director: Don Scardino | Stars: Steve Carell, Luke Vanek, Steve Buscemi, Mason Cook

Votes: 65,297 | Gross: $22.53M

33. The Geisha Boy (1958)

Approved | 98 min | Comedy

Gilbert Wooley is a second-rate magician who is sent to entertain the troops in the pacific. During his time in Japan he becomes attached to a little orphan boy.

Director: Frank Tashlin | Stars: Jerry Lewis, Marie McDonald, Sessue Hayakawa, Barton MacLane

Votes: 1,520

34. Death Defying Acts (2007)

PG | 97 min | Drama, History, Romance

48 Metascore

On a tour of Britain in 1926, Harry Houdini enters into a passionate affair with a psychic out to con the famous magician.

Director: Gillian Armstrong | Stars: Catherine Zeta-Jones, Guy Pearce, Timothy Spall, Saoirse Ronan

Votes: 9,015 | Gross: $0.00M

35. Presto (2008)

G | 5 min | Animation, Short, Comedy

A stage magician's rabbit gets into a magical onstage brawl against his neglectful guardian with two magic hats.

Director: Doug Sweetland | Star: Doug Sweetland

Votes: 19,504

36. A-Haunting We Will Go (1942)

67 min | Adventure, Comedy

Stan and Ollie get involved with con men, crooks, a genial magician, and two interchangeable coffins with disastrous but funny results.

Director: Alfred L. Werker | Stars: Stan Laurel, Oliver Hardy, Dante, Sheila Ryan

Votes: 809

38. Magic Camp (2012)

Unrated | 86 min | Documentary, Family

Welcome to the real Hogwarts. To cope with the pressures of growing up, magic-obsessed kids congregate at the one place where they can be themselves: Tannen's Magic Camp, the most prestigious magic institution in the world.

Director: Judd Ehrlich | Stars: Jonah Conlin, Zach Ivins, Zoe Reiches, Reed Spool

Votes: 204

39. Black Magic (1944)

Approved | 67 min | Comedy, Crime, Drama

Charlie searches for a murderer amidst numerous ghosts conjured up by a strange variety of spiritualists and occultists.

Director: Phil Rosen | Stars: Sidney Toler, Mantan Moreland, Frances Chan, Joseph Crehan

Votes: 1,123

40. Women in Boxes (2008)

80 min | Documentary, Romance

About Magic Assistants. The one who distorts her body into impossible positions while the magician cuts her in pieces, sets her on fire and says TAA DAA. Who's the real magician?

Directors: Phil Noyes, Harry Pallenberg | Stars: Criss Angel, Gay Blackstone, Lance Burton, Cathy Daniel

Votes: 37

41. Smokin' Aces (2006)

R | 108 min | Action, Crime, Drama

45 Metascore

When a Las Vegas performer-turned-snitch named Buddy Israel decides to turn state's evidence and testify against the mob, it seems that a whole lot of people would like to make sure he's no longer breathing.

Director: Joe Carnahan | Stars: Jeremy Piven, Ryan Reynolds, Ray Liotta, Joseph Ruskin

Votes: 128,124 | Gross: $35.66M

42. Black Magic (1949)

Passed | 105 min | Drama, Mystery, Romance

Hypnotist uses his powers for revenge against King Louis XV's court.

Directors: Gregory Ratoff, Orson Welles | Stars: Orson Welles, Nancy Guild, Akim Tamiroff, Frank Latimore

Votes: 675

43. The Last Magic Show (2007)

90 min | Comedy, Romance

A young escape artist who believes he possesses magical powers has one chance at the "big time", but first must replace the love of his life: the stage assistant that broke his heart.

Director: Andy Conlan | Stars: Andy Conlan, Georgie Hill, Jade Collins, Michael Hurst

Votes: 64

44. Magicians (2007)

90 min | Comedy

A pair of rivaling stage magicians are forced to confront their falling out over a guillotine mishap when they compete in a magic competition.

Director: Andrew O'Connor | Stars: Robert Webb, David Mitchell, Sarah Hadland, Paul Mark Elliott

Votes: 5,191

45. Rough Magic (1995)

PG-13 | 104 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

Set in the 1950s, Rough Magic tells the story of what happens when a pretty apprentice magician goes to Mexico to escape her fiancé, a wealthy politician, and to find a Mayan shaman who ... See full summary »

Director: Clare Peploe | Stars: Bridget Fonda, Russell Crowe, Jim Broadbent, D.W. Moffett

Votes: 1,622 | Gross: $0.17M

46. Carnival Magic (1981)

G | 86 min | Fantasy

A magician in a carnival--who actually can read minds and levitate people and objects--works with a superintelligent chimp named Alex, who can also talk. The magician and the chimp soon ... See full summary »

Director: Al Adamson | Stars: Don Stewart, Jennifer Houlton, Howard Segal, Regina Carrol

Votes: 485

47. Mandrake: A Magical Life (2001)

45 min

Mentalist. Illusionist. Escape Artist. Mandrake was not one magician but many. Who was the real Leon Mandrake? This biography draws back the curtain once more for the great magician who ... See full summary »

Director: Mary Ungerleider

48. Now You See Me (I) (2013)

PG-13 | 115 min | Crime, Mystery, Thriller

50 Metascore

An F.B.I. Agent, and an Interpol Detective, track a team of illusionists, who pull off bank heists during their performances, and reward their audiences with the money.

Director: Louis Leterrier | Stars: Jesse Eisenberg, Common, Mark Ruffalo, Woody Harrelson

Votes: 524,169 | Gross: $117.72M