May 25, 2011
When life loses its wonder, all it takes is one person who still believes in magic.
L’illusionniste is a simple story about an old magician, who finds that magic in life in a girl who becomes captivated by his illusions. He takes her to the city of Edinburgh and showers her with tricks, fancy shoes, and other luxuries that she in her remote Scottish island never knew about.
What the old magician doesn’t realise is that in the process of showing this girl the magical life in Edinburgh, he casts illusion on himself into believing that he can continue to enjoy this new life with her. But it was a happy moment while it lasted, for an old magician like him rejected by the alienating society, very touching, warm, and memorable moment.
L’illusionniste is a soft and subdued work. Almost no words are spoken in the film. What we have instead are characters speaking emotions. Background art couldn’t be more charming, where simple shots of a rainy London street or a lively and atmospheric pub in a remote Scottish island says about the sense of place more than any dialogue can. The film certainly takes its time in story-telling but it gets there eventually, and if you can allow yourself to just sit back and enjoy these touching moments against gorgeous backdrops, then you will be treated to a deeply moving tale rich in emotions.