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The Illusionist - Wellington Film Society


Mon 26 Mar 2018, 6:15pm–7:35pm

Where: Embassy Theatre, 10 Kent Terrace, Mt Victoria, Wellington

Restrictions: All Ages Licensed

Ticket Information:

  • Members Free: $0.00
  • 12-month Membership: $120.00
  • Additional fees may apply

Sylvain Chomet, UK/France, 2010 80 minutes PG Violence.

From Sylvain Chomet, the brilliant French director whose great 2003 Oscar-nominated hit The Triplets of Belleville raised the bar for animated films throughout the world, comes a true masterpiece of visual enchantment. One of the most original and unique geniuses in cinema today, Mr. Chomet directed, wrote, illustrated and composed the music for this holiday jewel, an homage to the sweet, sad melancholia of the legendary French comic Jacques Tati.

Adapted from an old, unproduced screenplay by Tati, The Illusionist follows the heavy-footed adventures of an aging, washed-up magician named Tatischeff, a relic from the old school of vaudeville who is rejuvenated by the affection and companionship of a young chambermaid named Alice.

Mr. Chomet's passion for hand-drawn figures gives the film the look of museum-quality watercolors that move. From the Scottish highlands to the bustling traffic jams of Edinburgh, the animation is so three-dimensional that when the illusionist's disagreeable rabbit escapes through the hurling bodies of a trio of robust acrobats, wreaking havoc in the theater, you really feel as though it's heading for your seat.

Both natural and incandescent light filters through an elaborately designed department store photographed through plate-glass windows. The most amazing effect of all: Tatischeff (the real surname of Jacques Tati) enters an empty cinema where a tiny audience watches an actual movie clip of Mon Oncle, one of Tati's classics.

It has to be seen to be believed. It is such high art that you will never believe you are looking at one canvas at a time. - Rex Reed, New York Observer, 15 December 2010

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