Make Believe Reviews

Top Critic
Mick LaSalle
San Francisco Chronicle
July 21, 2011
I would have liked to see more tricks and fewer parental interviews, but in any case, this is a reasonably appealing documentary for anyone with a special interest in the subject.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Top Critic
Joe Morgenstern
Wall Street Journal
May 27, 2011
Terrifically likable without trying too terribly hard.
Top Critic
Gary Goldstein
Los Angeles Times
May 27, 2011
The various sleights of hand are impressive even if we're afforded little insight into their actual execution. Still, it's fun stuff.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
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Neil Genzlinger
New York Times
May 12, 2011
The young people seen here never seem artificial; you feel their passion for doing magic, as well as their nagging loneliness, devoted as they are to practicing card tricks and such for hours on end, while their peers are off doing what most teenagers do.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
Top Critic
Ben Sachs
Chicago Reader
May 12, 2011
This tension between self-expression and professional advancement is fascinating material, but first-time director-editor J. Clay Tweel avoids the nuance that might have brought it to life.
Top Critic
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
May 12, 2011
Magicians have a saying: "The trick is told when the trick is sold. " These kids are sold on tricks.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Michelle Orange
Village Voice
May 11, 2011
Make Believe pairs a newly entrenched formula with old-fashioned, artisanal illusion.
Top Critic
Eric Hynes
Time Out
May 10, 2011
Make Believe eagerly (and predictably) fulfills rather than transcends the expectations of the genre.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
Top Critic
John Anderson
Variety
May 5, 2011
A charming, affectionate and often elegantly executed study of teenage magicians, their craft and the social shadows they step out of when they do their stuff.