As Woody Allen movies go, Magic In The Moonlight is middling. It’s nowhere near his worst, nor does it stand with his best.
The film takes place in the twenties, where we meet Stanley (played by Colin Firth), a debunker of spiritualist frauds, who also happens to be a magician. He performs incognito as the world-famous Wei Ling Soo (who, incidentally, is a character based on a real magician, named William Ellsworth Robinson, who performed back in the late eighteen hundreds and early nineteen hundreds as Chung Ling Soo. Just, y’know, FYI).
One night after a show, Stanley’s longtime friend and colleague Howard (played by Simon McBurney) arrives backstage and begins to tell him about the latest spiritualist he’s met. Simon brings Stanley in when, as is the case here, he’s unable to work out how a particular medium is deceiving people. Stanley vows to expose her and the two set off immediately for the French Riviera.
Mike returns after another month off podcasting, eager to get back behind the mic. A lot of current films are covered on this show, including The World’s End, Blue Jasmine, and You’re Next. Plenty of discussion of some older stuff is also included, like the Canadian film Incendies, which should’ve been an Oscar winner…
Listen to or download the show below, and click “read more of this post” to view a complete breakdown of the topics discussed in this episode.
First off, a mea culpa. When I posted my top 10 of 2008 a few years back, I intended it to be a yearly thing. But obviously that hasn’t happened. 2009 was a complete write-off. I kept track of what I watched and compiled a top 10, but never found the time to actually write everything up. (Just for the record, my favourite film that year was Inglourious Basterds.) The next year was a similar story: no write up. But I did manage to preview the Oscars, and at least speak about my favourite films of the year thanks to the very first Slandering Others Anonymously Film Podcast episode ever.
This year, I’m getting back on track. I’m presenting my top 10 below, my Oscar predictions are up, and Matthew and I have done a 2011 wrap-up podcast. Needless to say, I’m really happy to have gotten all of these things pulled together this year.