It sounds like a great idea for a film: a Scottish con-woman, with the manners and mannerisms of a Morningnside lady but a heart of cold steel inside, attempts to con the great Harry Houdini. And Catherine Zeta Jones, in the lead female role, does a surprisingly great job in spite of being Welsh. Unfortunately, Guy Pierce manages to make one of the most intriguing figures of his team seem boring with his shallow performance, Timothy Spall (playing Houdini's manager) seems surprisingly ill-at-ease in a role you might have thought he was made for (and struggles throughout with his accent), while role of the con-woman's daughter is written as wholesome where a little malevolence might have spiced up the plot. In fact, this character provides a narration that seems wholly unnecessary., except to cover up the paucity of actual happenings and pad out the film. The story has notes of whimsy (the con artist, in spite of being a successful public entertainer, lives in a bizarrely Arcadian graveyard), but is never quite fanciful enough to work as fantasy; as a realist story, it's duller than it's premise suggests.