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Magic (1978)

Cast: Anthony Hopkins, Anthony Hopkins, Ann-Margret, more...
Director: Richard Attenborough, Richard Attenborough
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Rating: Not Rated
Studio: United American
Genre: Horror, Supernatural/Occult
Running Time: 106 min.
Languages: English
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Anthony Hopkins is a ventriloquist psychologically tormented by his dummy in the Richard Attenborough thriller Magic (a film with a story that may seem familiar to those who have seen the Michael Redgrave segment of Dead of Night, or the Cliff Robertson episode "The Dummy" from The Twilight Zone television series). William Goldman based his screenplay on his best-selling novel. Hopkins plays Corky, a seedy magician who is hooted off the stage in the low-rent clubs that will stoop to hire him. But when he comes across a dummy named Fats, his career is energized. Corky sees in Fats everything he lacks himself -- confidence, creativity, and verbal agility. With the help of his agent Ben Greene (Burgess Meredith), Corky rises to the top of the nightclub circuit. But with Corky's success comes an increased paranoia, and he turns down a TV contract, believing that it would mean taking a medical examination and that rumors of his mental instability might leak out. Corky takes off to a Catskills resort, run by Peggy Ann Snow (Ann-Margret), an old girlfriend now unhappily married to a volatile hick (Ed Lauter). While a frustrated Ben high tails it to the Catskills to find Corky, Corky discovers that he still has feelings for Peggy, but lands in the middle of a love triangle between the woman and her husband, where his schizophrenic personality manifests itself and additional murders occur. ~ Paul Brenner, All Movie Guide

GreenCine Member Reviews

Fond memories of a very creepy ventriloquism act.... by emdoub September 19, 2009 - 9:04 PM PDT
I liked the movie - the acting and cinematography were spot-on, the story was coherent and believable, and that was one creepy situation. Good suspense, a good cast, and an engrossing story make this movie, while not stellar, certainly above average. The special features, including a good history of stage ventriloquism, are also worth checking out.

Abra-cadabra! Zzzzzzzzz.... by talltale July 2, 2006 - 9:38 AM PDT
I found MAGIC tiresome and obvious when it made its debut way-back-when but, after reading a nice NY Times review around the time the film was supposed to appear on DVD, I thought perhaps I was too young to have appreciated it. Now, after viewing over half of the movie again, it still seems tiresome and obvious. Although it's fun to watch Ann-Margaret in just about anything, to see Anthony Hopkins so young again, and to enjoy Burgess Meredith in an especially good role, the story, screenplay and direction (first two by William Goldman, the latter by Sir Richard Attenborough) are lackluster: ugly--without the depth to warrant that ugliness--and slow.

GreenCine Member Rating

(Average 6.24)
25 Votes
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The "Freaks and Geeks" movie list.
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