SynopsisVery freely inspired of a news of Steven Millhauser, Eisenheim the Illusionist , the film tells the history of a magician at the end of the 19th century with Vienna. By love for a woman, he will be opposed to the crown prince and to the police forces under his orders.
It is the end of the XIXe century, at the beginning of the cinematographic art. In backdrop, the Kinetoscope of Thomas Edison or the Kinetograph of Mélies or the Cinematograph of Leon Bouly and brothers Light. It is the time of discovered projection of the images, that of the success of the precision mechanics, automats. The conjurers fascinate though the public informs does not want to be more deceived by the wizard …
The scenario presents resplendent Vienna to us. Although opened with the external influences, it is strongly militarized, the dynasty of the Habsbourg largely dominating the policy. The dramas follow one another in the family of François-Joseph Ier of Austria. Nevertheless, Léopold - which is presented like the son of François-Joseph Ier of Austria - forever existed.
The love of Sophie and Eisenheim is not without pointing out that of Romeo and Juliette. Indeed, they were discovered during their adolescence and it tried to flee the family yoke.
The inspector Uhl chief is honest to the crown prince, but presents a critical spirit which recalls the scientist in the search of evidence before affirming or to cancel anything. Its behavior is precursory of certain Vienna which will appear later at the beginning of the 20th century: Sigmund Freud, Bruno Bettelheim and Friedrich Hayek, for example.
Eisenheim, the illusionist, present of the turns which claim an art of the very elaborate Escamotage, of which the Master on the matter, Jean-Eugene Robert-Houdin could be the inspirer. The film uses in particular the turn of the orange tree which bluffait the spectators of the French magician and who was already known before him.
The illusionist puts in scene celebrates it turn of the spectra on the subject of which Robert-Houdin tells that it was “imagined in 1863, by Mr. Pepper, director of the Polytechnic Institution of London. In the same year, Mr. Hostein, director of the imperial theater of Châtelet, bought Mr. Pepper the secrecy of the spectra to make them appear in a drama entitled: " The secrecy of Aurore" miss;. But the technique used was former. Robert-Houdin specifies that Mr. Pepper was plagiarized because on October 20th, 1852, ten years earlier, one named Pierre Séguin had deposited a patent for a toy named the Polyoscope. ”
- Edward Norton : Eisenheim
- Paul Giamatti: Inspector chief Uhl
- Jessica Biel: Sophie of von Täschen
- Rufus Sewell: Crown prince Léopold
- Eddie Marsan: Josef Fischer
PlacesEven if the history occurs in Austria, the film were mainly made in Czech Republic. The city of Vienna which appears on the screen in fact is represented by the towns of Tábor and Prague, while the scenes of the village of childhood of Eisenheim were held with Český Krumlov. The palate of the prince is the fortress of Konopiště (located close to Benešov), at the beginning the residence of François-Ferdinand of Austria.
- Norton was involved with the British magician James Freedman. It wished to reduce to the maximum the special effects by computer.
- Eisenheim explains to Uhl how to determine which hand contains a small ball. This method really functions. When you carry a hand to your face, there is less of blood which flows there, it is consequently paler than the other.
- Official site
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