• Publication date: November 28, 2011

How can he be stopped when he has the minds of the masses? The Illusionist: Nothing Is What It Seems

The Illusionist is an Academy Award-nominated film that is loosely based on Steven Millhauser's story "Eisenheim the Illusionist" about a world where nothing is as it seems and an illusionist and a police inspector face off in a challenge of wills that attempts to determine where reality ends and magic begins, blurring the line between power and corruption, love and devotion, and ultimately, life and death.

The Illusionist is an Academy Award-nominated film that is loosely based on Steven Millhauser's story "Eisenheim the Illusionist" about a world where nothing is as it seems and an illusionist and a police inspector face off in a challenge of wills that attempts to determine where reality ends and magic begins, blurring the line between power and corruption, love and devotion, and ultimately, life and death.

Edward Norton plays a mysterious stage magician, Eisenheim, who bends nature's laws to his will in front of awestruck crowds. When Eisenheim begins to perform his astounding illusions in Vienna, word quickly spreads of the man with other worldly powers, even reaching the ears of one of Europe's most powerful men, Crown Prince Leopold (Rufus Sewell).

Leopold attends one of Eisenheim's shows, convinced that he can debunk him during the performance. But when the Prince's beautiful fianc� and companion, Sophie, assists the magician onstage, Eisenheim and Sophie recognize each other from their childhood and a dormant love affair is rekindled.

It quickly becomes apparent that both men will go to any length to claim and keep Sophie's love, which is where Vienna's Chief Inspector, Uhl, enters as he is assigned by Leopold to expose Eisenheim, even while the magician gains a devoted and vocal public following.

With Uhl doggedly searching for the reasons and the man behind the trickery, Eisenheim prepares to execute his greatest illusion yet.

The film was nominated for Oscar Award for best achievement in cinematography in 2007. It won Critics Choice Award for best composer (Philip Glass), Achievement Award for outstanding achievement in filmmaking acting (Jessica Biel) and SDFCS Award for best cinematography (Dick Pope) in 2006.

With a production budget of US$ 16.5 millions, the movie grossed US$ 40 millions in domestic market and achieved moderate success worldwide, with revenues amounting to US$ 47 millions.

The film is rated PG-13 for some sexuality and violence.

Year: 2006

Duration: 110 mins

Genre: Drama/Mystery/Romance

Starring:

Edward Norton

Jessica Biel

Paul Giamatti

Rufus Sewell

Eddie Marsan

Jake Wood

Tom Fisher

Vincent Franklin

Directed by: Neil Burger