This magician wears a tracksuit rather than a cape and instead of pulling coins out from behind people’s ears, he’s more likely to put a bullet in them before expertly disposing of the body. Killer for hire Ray Shoesmith (played by a very convincing Scott Ryan, who also wrote, directed and produced) is lethally effective at what he does and has a killer humor to boot. We get to know him as he is filmed by a friend while he does his daily rounds: visiting the forest where he buries bodies, before moving on to a gangster’s car to hammer out a shady deal. The Magician takes its cartoon violence from Tarantino and its mockumentary cues from the notorious Man Bites Dog, but it is Ryan’s solid performance and snappy writing that make the film.
Melbourne Underground FF 2003 – Best Film, Best Director, Best Actor
Scott Ryan was born in Melbourne, Australia in 1969. He made his first attempts at a working career in film while still a student at the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology, but no one seemed interested in his script for what would become The Magician. He finally decided to take things into his own hands, literally – he shot the film in 10 days on a non-budget of three thousand dollars. It screened in its original version at New Horizons in 2007, as part of the New Australian Cinema section. After hooking up with stuntman and producer Nash Edgerton, Ryan re-edited the film and the second version received a wider release. It is his only film to date, although Ryan has hinted at plans for a second, involving zombies.
2005 Magik / The Magician