26.8.10

 

L'Illusionniste


L'Illusionniste, Sylvain Chomet's second film and Jacques Tati's last, is a remarkable film; The Guardian gave if five stars. The film also reflects a tortured family history. Among other things, it is a love letter to Edinburgh, with loving depictions of many familiar locations. I saw it in the Cameo; how often do you watch a film that includes a scene in the very place you are sitting? While many of the settings are easy to identify, I could not place one key location, the 'Royal Music Hall' (see below)---did this actually exist in Edinburgh, and if so, where?

Comments:
> How often do you watch a film that includes a scene in the very place you are
> sittting?

It actually happened to me once, with this film:
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0846069/
 
I don't know if it ever went by the name "Royal Music Hall", but that's surely the Playhouse, near the top of Leith Walk.

Street View
 
i'd like to know if the garage is this one on east london street (round the corner from broughton place so would make sense)

Street View
 
I just watched The Illusionist and was googling to see where the "Royal Music Hall" might be as I don't recognise it. I thought at first it was The Playhouse, as a previous poster suggested, but one shot reveals that the hall is positioned on a corner (briefly visible just to the left of the building). While writing this I have realised that it is most likely, at least modelled on, The King's Theatre on Leven Street, just a few doors along (and across the street) from the Cameo cinema (also featured).

I live in Edinburgh and spent the entire film spotting the places I know rather than enjoying the story, though it has some wonderful moments. But it did make me appreciate the beauty of the city I live in. Even if the real thing doesn't quite retain the romance of the 1950s (bloody tramworks etc.).

http://goo.gl/maps/8NVev
 
I saw The Illusionist a few months ago and really liked it, both because of its tender story, and also because of its old school animation style. Today, I happened to catch it on TV again, but this time I watched it with a whole different perspective because I just returned from my first trip to Edinburgh (what a lovely city!) a few days ago and now all the Edinburgh scenes have a whole new meaning to me! How fun to watch a film of a place that you just visited! It helped me visualize it as it was back in the 1950s. Of course you can always look at old photos, but somehow when it's depicted in an animated film, with so much detail, it has an extra element of charm and nostalgia to it!
 
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