By Ryan Parsons | Image property of Yari Film Group.
Earlier last week we reported on two sub-par reviews for The Illusionist and it now looks like publications are beginning to sing a different tune.
The Illusionist Gets Positives
We have recently been alerted to two new reviews that have appeared online for The Illusionist and, to switch things up, both are very positive.
Best of the summer coolers is The Illusionist, a richly textured and very entertaining movie that actually knows the value of telling a good story with skill, precision and excitement. Set against the political intrigue and baroque architecture of 1900 Vienna under the Habsburgs and described as a “supernatural mystery,” it tells the darkly brooding and intensely romantic story of a magician named Eisenheim (Edward Norton), who fell in love as a poor peasant teenager with Sophie von Teschen (Jessica Biel), the beautiful daughter of an aristocratic family for whom his father worked as a furniture maker.
Intelligently written and skillfully directed in the form of a puzzle by Neil Burger (Interview with the Assassin), and elegantly photographed with style and opulence in the fin-de-siècle theaters and hunting lodges of Prague, The Illusionist has a lyrical quality that becomes almost surreal. As the countess in jeopardy, Jessica Biel, from the disastrous Cameron Crowe film Elizabethtown, is a blank page. But happily, the rest of the cast brings passion and ballast to the overripe story.
This elegant fable of art, love and politics is set in Vienna circa 1900, all thoughts of Freud being strictly intentional. The Illusionist curls around you like a smoke ring, which only enhances its mysterious allure. Writer-director Neil Burger, who stirred things up promisingly in 2002's Interview With the Assassin, shows a magician's knack for indirection. It's a talent that comes in handy in this tantalizing film adaptation of the short story Eisenheim the Illusionist, by Pulitzer Prize winner Steven Millhauser.
It's mesmerizing fun to be fooled.
Very positive reviews to combat the earlier ones. Will The Illusionist continue to gain critical support before its release this Friday? Let's give it a few days.
Check out the full reviews for The Illusionist by clicking on the bold links above.