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Magic In The Moonlight

MPAA Rating: PG-13 for a brief suggestive comment, and smoking throughout.
not reviewed
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Moviemaking Quality:

Primary Audience:
Romance Comedy Drama
1 hr. 38 min.
Year of Release:
USA Release:
July 25, 2014 (limited—17 theaters)
August 1, 2014 (limited—65 theaters)
August 8, 2014 (limited—170 theaters)
DVD: December 16, 2014
Copyright, Sony Picture Classics click photos to ENLARGE Copyright, Sony Picture Classics Copyright, Sony Picture Classics Copyright, Sony Picture Classics Copyright, Sony Picture Classics Copyright, Sony Picture Classics Copyright, Sony Picture Classics
Relevant Issues
Copyright, Sony Picture Classics

TRUE LOVE—What is true love and how do you know when you have found it? Answer


fake spiritualists

séances / communicating with the dead

mind-reading, mindreaders

familiar spirit


spirits in the Bible

lying in the Bible


death in the Bible

final judgment


How to witness to atheists


How can we know there’s a God? Answer

What if the cosmos is all that there is? Answer

If God made everything, who made God? Answer


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Featuring: Emma StoneSophie
Colin FirthStanley
Marcia Gay Harden … Actress
Hamish Linklater … Actor
Erica Leerhsen … Actress
Jacki Weaver … Grace
Eileen Atkins … Aunt Vanessa
Simon McBurney … Actor
Antonia Clarke … Actress
Ute Lemper … French Singer
Jeremy Shamos … Actor
Jessica Forde … Reporter
Paul Bandey … Reporter
Kenneth Edelson … Gypsy
Natasha Andrews … Actress
Director: Woody Allen
Producer: Harbor Picture Company
Perdido Productions
Distributor: Sony Picture Classics

Here’s what the distributor says about their film: “Chinese conjuror Wei Ling Soo is the most celebrated magician of his age, but few know that he is the stage persona of Stanley Crawford , a grouchy and arrogant Englishman with a sky-high opinion of himself and an aversion to phony spiritualists' claims that they can perform real magic. Persuaded by his life-long friend, Howard Burkan, Stanley goes on a mission to the Côte d'Azur mansion of the Catledge family: mother Grace, son Brice, and daughter Caroline. He presents himself as a businessman named Stanley Taplinger in order to debunk the alluring young clairvoyant Sophie Baker who is staying there with her mother.

Sophie arrived at the Catledge villa at the invitation of Grace, who is convinced that Sophie can help her contact her late husband, and once there, attracted the attention of Brice, who has fallen for her head over heels. From his very first meeting with Sophie, Stanley dismisses her as an insignificant pip-squeak who he can unmask in no time, scoffing at the family's gullibility.

To his great surprise and discomfort, however, Sophie accomplishes numerous feats of mind-reading and other supernatural deeds that defy all rational explanation, leaving him dumbfounded. Before long, Stanley confesses to his beloved Aunt Vanessa that he has begun to wonder whether Sophie's powers could actually be real. If they were to be true, Stanley realizes that anything might be possible, even good, and his entire belief system would come crashing down.

What follows is a series of events that are magical in every sense of the word and send the characters reeling. In the end, the biggest trick this film plays is the one that fools us all.”

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Movie Critics

…Woody Allen’s wanly whimsical latest is a very minor entry in the prolific director’s string of Europe-set films. A minute after it's over, you don't care. …
—Todd McCarthy, The Hollywood Reporter

…If the idea of a universe of unmotivated chaos seems scary, rest assured that the reality of 98 minutes of unmotivated order is worse. Mr. Allen has had his ups and downs over the years. Rarely, though, has he put a story on screen that manifests so little energy…
—A.O. Scott, The New York Times

…Woody Allen’s latest is charmless and flat — but at least it looks nice…
—Nathalie Atkinson, National Post

…a high-spirited bauble that goes down easy thanks to fleet comic pacing, a surfeit of ravishing Cote d’Azur vistas and the genuinely reactive chemistry of stars Colin Firth and Emma Stone. A welcome balm for the blockbuster-addled soul…
—Scott Foundas, Variety

…for all its visual delights, Magic in the Moonlight, …has to be one of his bigger duds. A mostly mirthless comedy, a sparkless romance…
—Steven Rea, Philadelphia Inquirer

…Woody's movie about a medium isn't well-done… a pleasant, Jazz-Age trifle about seances and the silly rich… It's beautifully shot …but it doesn't have much life.
—Stephen Whitty, The Star-Ledger (New Jersey)

…the comedy feels laboured, it’s all too lightweight to matter… The movie is not magic, but the romance is nothing worse than mundane.
—Liam Lacey, The Globe and Mail

…‘Magic in the Moonlight’ is just more of Woody’s shtick…
—Lou Lumenick, New York Post

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