By Brian Costello,
Common Sense Media Reviewer
Common Sense Media Reviewers
Teens chase magical dreams in inspiring documentary.
A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
While they make it look easy, the teenage magicians in this documentary show how hard work and sacrifice goes far towards meeting and exceeding life goals.
Positive Role Models
Each teen magician in this film makes time to follow their passions, they work hard to achieve their dreams, and let they don't let anything stand in their way.
A single use of "s--t" by a secondary character.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that this engaging documentary about dedicated, goal-driven teenage magicians should inspire thought and discussion about the amount of work and sacrifice necessary to be successful in any endeavor.
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Where to Watch
Based on 3 parent reviews
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Quite a good movie with one iffy part
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What's the Story?
MAKE BELIEVE follows the lives of six up-and-coming teenage magicians as they practice and prepare to compete in the World Magic Seminar in the hopes of being crowned Teen World Champion by professional magician Lance Burton. Coming from places as diverse as Skokie, Illinois, and Kitayama, Japan, each magician talks about the amount of time, effort, and sacrifice it requires to be the successful magician many are in the process of becoming. They meet in Las Vegas, and while they feel a powerful sense of camaraderie, when the competition begins, each magician is focused and determined to be the best.
Is It Any Good?
This award-winning documentary is a fun and inspiring story. It follows the lives of these quirky single-minded teenagers as they focus all of their energies into being the best magicians they can be. Even for those who aren't fans of magic, this compelling story of teenagers aspiring to, in the words of magician Bill Koch, "excellence: nothing less," is nothing less than enchanting. By the time they make it Las Vegas for the World Magic Seminar, you know what's at stake for these six as they each take the stage to perform their tricks.
Also, for those who are interested in learning magic, the DVD includes over an hour of magic tutorials.
Talk to Your Kids About ...
Families can talk about the effort these magicians put into learning their craft. What would happen if you put this much effort into your talents? What sacrifices did these magicians make in order to be successful?
Why do you think the filmmakers chose teen magicians as their subject? What makes these stories compelling?
How do families and communities work together to make the dreams of these magicians real?
- In theaters: May 13, 2010
- On DVD or streaming: September 20, 2011
- Director: J. Clay Tweel
- Studio: Level 22
- Genre: Documentary
- Character Strengths: Perseverance
- Run time: 91 minutes
- MPAA rating: NR
- Last updated: December 25, 2022
Did we miss something on diversity?
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Where to Watch
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