Magic in the Moonlight (2014)
Starring Eileen Atkins, Colin Firth, Marcia Gay Harden, Hamish Linklater, Simon McBurney, Emma Stone, and Jacki Weaver
Directed by Woody Allen
Colin Firth is Stanley, an illusionist whose stage act as Chinese magician Wei Ling Soo is renowned across Europe. Stanley also happens to be well known for debunking soothsayers, fortune tellers, and afterlife believers and he is called upon by his good friend Howard (Simon McBurney) to head to his friend's house in France where a beautiful psychic named Sophie (Emma Stone) is working her charms on Grace and Brice Catledge (Jacki Weaver and Hamish Linklater), a mother and son who find hope in the young woman for different reasons -- one is amazed at Sophie's ability to purportedly contact her dead husband and the other is amazed at Sophie's ability to make him fall in love with her. Upon Stanley's arrival, he is adamant that he will debunk Sophie's powers, but as he spends time with the psychic, he finds himself being taken in by her charms and begins to think his entire philosophy on life may need to be readjusted.
There's a charm present throughout Magic in the Moonlight and it certainly is thanks in large part to the actors, all of whom exude a 1920s flapper-esque joie de vivre. Unfortunately, charm doesn't make a movie completely sing and there's not much else the film has going for it. Allen's film is supposed to be a comedy, but the laughs are few and far between. Sure, you may smile at Colin Firth and Emma Stone's repartee, but in the end what they're saying is rather inconsequential. Then again, I always appreciate Woody Allen's use of music in his films and even when his jokes fall flat, his film soundtracks don't.
The RyMickey Rating: C