Magic is considered to be a part of fantasy world. We got many magicians from different parts of the world who perform for the entertainment of people and they are always curious about the tricks behind the magic magicians perform. This makes the magic world more interesting specially for children for which many movies have been made and released keeping in mind the importance of magic. Magic has been evolved since the silent era times which still goes strong in today’s era. But there have been many such movies which are still remembered by the youth and children. Some of the movies which top the list are:
10. THE GRIM GAME
This silent movie was directed by Irvin Wilat in 1919 starring Harry Houdini and Ann Forest. Not one of the perfect movies to watch but in terms of magic it’s a must. The movie showcased Houdini’s talent as an escapologist and aviator. He was not only a great magician but was a great entrepreneur who embraced the early cinema but to become quiet honest he made only a few lasting contribution to the motion cinema art.
In someway, the director Goeorge Mellies “trick photography” decreased a few of dramatic effect which Houdini’s live performance may had faced.
9. THE LORD OF ILLUSIONS
The movie was directed by Clive Barker in 1995 which was based on his novel with the same title. This movie is notable for its magical references. It starred Scott Bakula as Barker’s signature character Harry D’Amour. Along with the evil lead character Nix having the supernatural power, his disciples too possess those magical powers. Certainly one of his disciple named Swann after Nix’s early demise i.e just before his early resurrection makes use of his magical powers to become a famous illusionist. The staged magical scenes are performed very well. The great Billy McCombe did a cameo appearance in the movie and the Magical Castle also represented the den of secrets. The basic moral or fact being symbolized through the movie that “Magic is a harmful reality” is applauded as a perfect theme for the present Bizarre magicians.
8. CAST A DEADLY SPELL
Directed by Martin Campbell in 1991, the movie starred Fred Ward as Detective Harry Philip Lovecraft who resided in 1940s La where magic is a common is common place. He is being employed by a rich wealthy man to search for his lost book named The Necronomicon.
Its actually called a Bogart-Esque-movie-Noire consisting of magical elements in it obviously having a lot of magicians performing. The film is witty, fun and filled with Lovecraft references.
Sequel to this movie with the name THE WITCH HUNT directed by Paul Schrader in 1994 starred Dennis Hopper playing the Detective H.P.Lovecraft who combats the evils and corruption of magic spreading senator. As a sequel not shoddy but is not quite interesting as the first part.
7. THE GREAT KANDINSKY
It was directed by Terry Windsor in 1995 starring Richard Harris as the main protagonist. This “made for TV” movie was not only praised for its charm and humor but also for its breath taking and sensitive difficulties. Richard Harris plays a retired escapologist who resides in a nursing home. The plot of the movie revolves around the desire of Kandinsky to chase one more secret and to perform one more final show. The escape featured in the movie is the Houdini’s Water Torture Cell which is a proof to the iconic image of that one illusion.
Movie was made under the direction of Edmund Goulding in 1947 achieving the status of one of the remarkable movie in the history of film noire. The main lead Tyrone Power plays Stanton Carlyle who is a physic con man whose trail of deceit and self-deceit takes him from rags to riches and then again to rags. It is obvious that the magicians performing will immediately seek a way to a performer who used to venture and perform under the name of Rinaldo but was now suddenly known to the professionals as well the mentalists worldwide with the name of Stanton Carlisle.
Despite of his good natured roles, Stanton argued that this was his real name which was not influenced or taken by Goulding’s film.
5. EXCELSIOR PRINCE OF MAGICIANS
Directed by Goerge Melies in 1901 who was himself a magician before showing his talent into cinematic magic.He produced many short films out of which this is considered to be one of his best although the other movies did feature stage tricks which many of the magicians would like to follow.He was a true innovater who was the first one to feature time lapse, stop frame and multiple exposures.
4. THE ILLUSIONIST
Produced under the direction of Neil Hamburger in 2006 introducing Edward Norton as the protagonist along with Paul Giamatti and Jessica Beil. It is said to be based on Steven Millhauser’s novel.The background, design and pace of the movie is wonderful as it’s a love story with few superb performances by the talented cast. But the performance of great ideal magician is done by Eisenhiem played by Norton who uses his ability to secure the love of a woman far above his social strength.
The cinematography is excellent and the plot of the movie is made up very perfectly with a couple of surprises. The Illusionist is considered to be one of the three movies along with The Prestige, The Scoop to explore the talents of stage magicians.
The magical plot advice for the movie was given by James Freedman, Michael Weber, Ricky Jay and Scott Penrose.
3. THE PRESTIGE
The movie was directed by Christopher Nolan in 2006 adapted from Christopher Priest’s novel of the same title.Unlike Illusionist, The Prestige deals with revenge, competition between rivals and envy.The filM stars Hugh Jackman as Robert Angier and Christian Bale as Alfred Borden as rival stage magicians each having a secret along with a narration which is non linear and that makes the movie engaging and worth. But mainly we need to maintain the twisted web of intrigue.
The Prestige which is the finale of the movie reveals the events that are surprising for the audience. Ricky Jay does a cameo as an established stage performer and Michael Caine does a great job as a illusion builder.
Intelligent scripting’s bring into account the emotional tensions to existence as well as the high magical events like the Bullet Catch, Water Torture are a must for the magicians to watch.
Released in 2007 is ranked as the most superb magical movie till today directed by Andrew O Conner with the script writing done by David Britland, Anthony Owen and Andy Nyman and for others this movie was surely a magical tour. It stars duo Robert Webb as Karl and David Michael as Harry as stage magicians who in spite of their personal differences compete together in a magic competition, pay homage to some key magicians and have a real knock at some oddness that is a gift to the magic scene.
The talented real life magicians Patrick Page, Aladin and Ali Bongo make special appearances and the majority of the magic stalls at the magic convention hosting the competitions at the central movie plot were provided by famous magician dealers. The magical advisory of the movie was Scott Penrose who himself appears as Magibot.
1.HARRY POTTER FILM SERIES
The highest grossing movie of all time based on magic are the Harry Potter film series based on the novels Harry Potter written by J.K.Rowling. The movie series was produced by David Heyman and star casted Daniel Radcliffe in and as the title role Harry Potter , Emma Watson as Hermione Granger and Rupert Grint as Ron Weasley as the three leading characters and the rights of the movie was sold to Warner Bros.
Four directors directed the film series naming Chris Columbus, Mike Newell, Alfanso Cuaron and David Yates. The series consists of eight fantasy magical films beginning from HARRY POTTER AND THE PHILOSOPHER’S STONE in 2001 followed by HARRY POTTER AND THE CHAMBER OF SECRETS in 2002, HARRY POTTER AND THE PRISONER OF AZKABAN in 2004, HARRY POTTER AND THE GOBLET OF FIRE in 2005, HARRY POTTER AND THE ORDER OF PHOENIX in 2007, HARRY POTTER AND THE HALF BLOOD PRINCE in 2009 and the last film divided into 2 parts HARRY POTTER AND THE DEATHLY HALLOWS-part 1 and HARRY POTTER AND THE DEATHLY HALLOWS –part 2.
The movie do gets darker and more interesting as the series progresses and is considered a movie mixed with magic, friendship and action.
All these parts were critically and commercially successful among the fans specially the youth and children and still being praised by them. This even influenced the children to imagine and enhance creativity.The witchcraft school Hogwarts got famous among them so much that they started thinking themselves of being a part of it.