In the last 20 years Woody Allen has developed a trend of releasing a fantastic film then, as audiences build expectations for his next, he brings out a sub-par one. Recently Midnight in Paris was followed with To Rome with Love. Magic in the Moonlight is Woody Allen’s latest offering and with the success and brilliance of Blue Jasmine, we expected more.
That said. Magic in the Moonlight isn’t all bad. Set in the 1920s, Colin Firth stars as the great Wei Ling Soo, magician extraordinaire. He’s a renowned skeptic when it comes to psychic ability. Brought to the Côte d’Azur by his friend (Simon McBurney), he will attempt to expose a celebrated young American spiritualist, played by Emma Stone, as a fraud. The more time he spends with her though, the more his theories start to unravel, as he grows more and more attached to her. It’s a romcom, so you can guess the end.
It’s a shallow story with very little substance, however, watching Colin Firth deliver the lines of an egotistical and overly self-involved man, is actually very enjoyable and humorous. It’s very Mark Darcy.
Like in most of his sub-par films, the cast does all it can to save it. Emma Stone is charming, Firth delivers, Hamish Linklater is always a pleasure to watch, but even the trio of brilliant actresses Marcia Gay Harden, Jacki Weaver and Eileen Atkins can’t quite save this.
With no background, never reading a review or watching the trailer, Magic in the Moonlight could be an enjoyable ride. It’s a harmless and entertaining enough movie. Just try and get past the fact that Emma Stone is 25 and Colin Firth is 54 and you’ll be fine!