The Mystical Flame (1903)

aka La flamme mereveilleuse
Article 4769 by Dave Sindelar
Date: 2-27-2015
Directed by Georges Melies
Featuring Georges Melies
Country: France
What it is: Magic trick short

A magician appears and does several tricks with a handkerchief, and then he proceeds to befuddle his assistant with other tricks.

Here’s another magic trick short from Melies, and this one has the benefit of being only two minutes long, so it doesn’t wear out its welcome. What occurred to me while watching this one was that I’d really like to have seen his live magic act; if he presented his live show with as much energy as he presented his cinematic tricks, he would have been a lot of fun. This one seems less thematically centered than some of his other shorts of this type; the flame only comes into play during a single trick, and if anything, he makes more of a show with his tricks with the handkerchief. This is a fairly solid and entertaining example of his magic trick films.

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