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Death Defying Acts

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United Kingdom, Australia · 2007
Rated PG · 1h 37m
Director Gillian Armstrong
Starring Catherine Zeta-Jones, Guy Pearce, Timothy Spall, Saoirse Ronan
Genre Drama, Romance

On a tour of Britain in 1926, Harry Houdini enters into a passionate affair with a psychic out to con the famous magician.

Stream Death Defying Acts

What are people saying?

What are critics saying?


Slate by

A minor but satisfying entry in the "what if" historical-fantasy genre.


New York Daily News by Elizabeth Weitzman

Though all the elements are in place, there's not much magic to be found in Death Defying Acts, an intermittently entertaining but surprisingly modest romance from Gillian Armstrong.


The New York Times by Neil Genzlinger

Ms. Zeta-Jones is too elegant for the lowlife she's supposed to be, Ms. Ronan isn't endearing enough to be a ragamuffin, and, under Gillian Armstrong's direction, never for a minute do you believe they're mother and daughter.


L.A. Weekly by Scott Foundas

This won't be remembered as one of the prodigiously talented Armstrong's great films (My Brilliant Career, High Tide, Little Women), but it's still 90 percent better than everything else out there.

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