The Illusionist -- Film Review
BERLIN -- Following the triumph of his wildly inventive "The Triplets of Belleville" in 2003, French animator Sylvain Chomet is off in an entirely different direction in "The Illusionist." Where "Triplets" exploded with narrative invention and cartoon foolery filled with cultural references, bicycle racing and strange juxtapositions, all told at a manic pace, "Illusionist" is at heart a simple story about an old vaudevillian and a young girl in the late 1950s. It's a mood piece, and that mood is melancholy.
Whereas Triplets won awards and major distribution deals, Illusionist looks like a more rarefied adult cartoon that will have loads of invites to festivals, but theatrical exposure outside Europe might be scant. Chomet's name alone assures some level of distribution on several platforms, but buyers might be wary this time.
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