CLICK HERE FOR BLOGGER TEMPLATES AND MYSPACE LAYOUTS »

Sunday, July 20, 2014

MAGIC IN THE MOONLIGHT


By D.E.Levine

Woody Allen's latest comedy is a romance set in the 1920s.  Stanley Crawford (Colin Firth) performs feats of prestidigetation as Wei Ling-Soo.  His hobby or sideline is debunking all types of sham mystics.

In 1928 Stanley is approached by his friend Howard (Simon McBurney).  A wealthy Pittsburgh industrial family has fallen under the spell of Sophie Baker (Emma Stone) who claims to be a clairvoyant.  The family son and heir Brice (Hamish Linklater) is so smitten he's planning to marry her.  Stanley, presenting himself as Mr. Taplinger, a businessman, goes there at Howard's challenge to debunk Sophie.

Instead, Stanley falls in love with Sophie.  Emma Stone is extremely funny with marvelous comic timing.  We're never quite sure whether she's a con artist or a real clairvoyant.  Even Stanley, who is trying to prove her a sham isn't sure.

With a strong supporting cast consisting of Jacki Weaver, Eileen Atkins and Marsha Gay Harden,  and cinematography that concentrates on the beautiful French Riviera, the film is a delight.  Also to be expected are the wonderful costumes created by Sonia Grande.

As usual in any Woody Allen film, the soundtrack is filled with old standards and in this instance some beautiful classical music.  A brief appearance is also made by Ute Lemper, the German caberet singer.

Overall, for pure entertainment,  Magic in the Moonlight  is a sure bet.