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Simon Magus

Simon Magus (1998)

tomatometer

63

Average Rating: 5.6/10
Reviews Counted: 30
Fresh: 19 | Rotten: 11

This debut film of Ben Hopkins' effectively evokes an atmosphere of magic and mysticism.

55

Average Rating: 5.4/10
Critic Reviews: 11
Fresh: 6 | Rotten: 5

This debut film of Ben Hopkins' effectively evokes an atmosphere of magic and mysticism.

audience

70

liked it
Average Rating: 3.7/5
User Ratings: 520

My Rating

Movie Info

Director of award-winning short films Ben Hopkins embarked on this ambitious feature project with Robert Jones, the producer of The Usual Suspects. The screenplay is inspired by Central European folklore, spaghetti Westerns and industrial history. But the film, which runs like a fable, has its roots in folktales rather than history. It is the end of the 19th century and progress has arrived in Silesia. Travelers do not stop at the town anymore because the railway track is laid past the small

Unrated,

Drama

Ben Hopkins

Samuel Goldwyn Films

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All Critics (36) | Top Critics (14) | Fresh (19) | Rotten (11) | DVD (1)

The villain sneers, and someone in the film- score department is banging a timpani in slow motion, meaning there's probably tragedy around the corner, but things are too earnest and sleepy to be sure.

July 24, 2001 Full Review Source: San Francisco Chronicle
San Francisco Chronicle
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An odd but original, at times even poetic, film about a vanished world.

July 6, 2001
Boston Globe
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Beautifully shot and lyrically told, Simon Magus is a beguiling study in contrasts, good and evil, darkness and light, hope and despair, joy and melancholy.

June 1, 2001 Full Review Source: Associated Press
Associated Press
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The more I think about Simon Magus, the less I'm sure what it's trying to say.

April 27, 2001 Full Review Source: Chicago Sun-Times
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Hopkins shows masterful skill in shaping Simon's reality and unreality in this engrossing, suspenseful morality play.

April 26, 2001
Chicago Tribune
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Reasonably diverting, but the story never matches the movie's fantastic visual imagination.

March 30, 2001 Full Review Source: New York Times
New York Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Presents a fairy-tale Eastern Europe glimpsed from far off through the telescope of melancholy nostalgia.

May 4, 2010 Full Review Source: East Bay Express
East Bay Express

A little too proud of its own eccentricities, often at the expense of the story.

February 27, 2004
New Times

Think of it as: "Fiddler on the Roof" as soap opera.

November 7, 2003
Greenwich Village Gazette

Full of magic and fantasy with an interesting mix of eccentric and complex characters.

July 24, 2001 Full Review Source: BBC

The final montage sequence is exquisite, marking the emergence of an unusual and brilliant visual stylist.

July 24, 2001 Full Review Source: E! Online
E! Online

A striking feature debut with a creditable stab at magical realism.

July 24, 2001 Full Review Source: Empire Magazine
Empire Magazine

A wonderfully intense emotional experience.

June 21, 2001
South Florida Sun-Sentinel

A muddled work, neither truly scary nor compelling.

June 1, 2001
Reel.com

Can't decide if it wants to be a fairy tale, a parable, or magical realism.

June 1, 2001 Full Review Source: Combustible Celluloid
Combustible Celluloid

Beautifully realized and lovingly photographed.

May 11, 2001 Full Review Source: Seattle Post-Intelligencer
Seattle Post-Intelligencer

A lyrical tribute to the mysteriousness of life and death.

March 30, 2001 Full Review Source: Spirituality and Practice
Spirituality and Practice

...this fable about intolerance is handsome without being especially thought-provoking.

March 30, 2001 Full Review Source: TV Guide's Movie Guide
TV Guide's Movie Guide

Despite its fine cast, this first feature by British writer-director Ben Hopkins is more clumsily realized than many a misfire in recent memory.

March 29, 2001 Full Review Source: Film Journal International
Film Journal International

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