Friday, 27 May 2011

The Magician by Ingmar Bergman

Compared to some of his other films The Magician (the original Swedish title is Ansiktet) is not his best in terms of film as art but it is, as many critics have written, one of his most accessible for audiences in terms of plot and meaning. I am unable to give any details of the plot here without ruining the enjoyment of a film which is an act of legerdemain in itself, as it reveals secrets beneath secrets. 
What can be said is that some research must have been done in writing the film. The different attitudes of the people towards magicians of the period within which the story takes place is spot on – and central to the plot. The only real factual blunder is a portrayal of one illusion that probably didn't exist at that time.  
When someone has seen the film, there is plenty to talk about but to do so with someone who hasn't seen the film is just being a spoil sport; so although I'm itching to discuss certain topics in the film, in fairness I won’t.
The above image shows the Tartan DVD (easily found second hand); there are also others, including a new one on Blu-Ray.

Thursday, 12 May 2011

Books by Al Smith

I've received a number of inquiries recently about books by Al Smith. It's the same question and so I might as well post the answer here. I've been asked which books by Al do I stock. I only stock one and that is Card Stalking. For all other titles, and inquiries about his magic magazine The LaBaL, you should ask Al directly by contacting him at:
To purchase a copy of Card Stalking you can find it on places like Ebay or on my website. If you buy it through my website, then postage is free to anywhere in the world. All other sites charge postage and packaging.

A selection of books by Al Smith: 


Wednesday, 4 May 2011

John Archer Interview

In April's issue of Mystery Magazine you will find an interview - by Walt Lees and myself - of one of the winners of Penn and Teller: Fool Us, John Archer.

Click on the link below for more details.