3.0, Europe, United States/Canada

The Illusionist

2006 / Neil Burger > One of the most refined films of the year, it’s hard to find any technical flaws in The Illusionist. Most noticeable is its cinematography, crisp and decisive about its turn-of-the-century Vienna setting. The mood is further perfected by Philip Glass’ elegant score. The acting is above par at worst, with Rufus Sewell’s post-Dark City re-emergence being a pleasant welcome. But as the drama unfolds, we find ourselves within a rich love story that, unfortunately, feels like it’s on shaky foundations. Thankfully, the mystery of the illusions drives the story forward. By the end, it is what it is: The unexpected is actually expected, but we not only only accept it, but actually enjoy it.