Magic in the Moonlight DVD Review

     Actors: Colin Firth
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Closed-captioned, Color, Subtitled, Widescreen, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish
  • Aspect Ratio: 2.40:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: PG-13 (Parental Guidance Suggested)
  • Studio: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: December 16, 2014
  • Digital Copy Expiration Date: December 31, 2017
  • Run Time: 96 minutes



            Woody Allen has nearly created an entire sub-genre of comedy with the consistency that he has retained many of the same narrative and stylistic choices over the years, even since his shift from New York to Europe as a regular shooting location. Allen nearly has a Japanese mentality to filmmaking, seeming to long for consideration as a whole, as one would do with the work of Yasujiro Ozu, and the breadth of his work makes this entirely plausible. In theory, this will always make Allen a filmmaker of incredible significance, though I hardly anticipate upcoming releases from him with any amount of excitement. Magic in the Moonlight fits perfectly in this filmography; seemingly effortlessly produced with the fluidity of a well-oiled machine, though void of any innovation. Allen may be more high-brow than the average romantic comedy, but he has come to be every bit as predictable.


            Although he is an acclaimed magician with a well-known (and extremely racist) onstage persona, Stanley Crawford is a lifelong cynic and skeptic of any real magic in the world. When a friend and colleague asks him to help disprove a psychic that has enraptured a wealthy family, Stanley gladly accepts the challenge. What he doesn’t anticipate is the ways in which the young psychic, Sophie Baker (Emma Stone), is able to capture his attention as well. Their chemistry and banter supersedes the question of Sophie’s abilities, as it does the banality of the plot.


            Those who are not mildly amused by the frivolity of the narrative are likely to be offended by the off-handed condescending tone the film takes on the matter of religion. God is placed in equal consideration with the discussion of magicians, psychics and ghosts. While I could have done without the pompous attitude inserted into these sequences, I had much greater issue with the off-putting age difference between the two leads. After watching Magic in the Moonlight and Birdman, I am desperate to see Emma Stone return to roles with romantic leads her own age.


            The DVD release of Magic in the Moonlight includes a behind-the-scenes featurette, as well as footage from the red carpet of the Los Angeles premiere.


    Entertainment Value: 7/10

    Quality of Filmmaking: 7/10

    Historical Significance:  7/10

    Special Features: 4.5/10



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