The Magus

  • 1968
  • Movie
  • R
  • Fantasy

THE MAGUS is a most confusing drama, and unlike many confusing films that ultimately find their way, this one never does and ends as fuzzily as it began. Caine is an English teacher who arrives on the Greek island of Phraxos where he meets Quinn, a wealthy man who apparently owns the island and may be a mystic living a life of ease in a huge villa. On the...read more

Where to Watch

Available to Stream

Rating:

THE MAGUS is a most confusing drama, and unlike many confusing films that ultimately find their way, this one never does and ends as fuzzily as it began. Caine is an English teacher who arrives on the Greek island of Phraxos where he meets Quinn, a wealthy man who apparently owns the island

and may be a mystic living a life of ease in a huge villa. On the other hand, he also might be a quisling hiding out from avengers because he aided the Nazis during their assault on Europe, or perhaps a movie producer making a picture. Whichever, he is an adroit gamesman who keeps everyone

guessing about his true identity as well as his past history. Equally confounding is the identity of Quinn's companion, Bergen, about whom it is said that she died 50 years before and is a ghost, not a human. Either that, or she's an actress working for Quinn, or a paranoid schizophrenic. Nobody

knows for sure about Quinn and Bergen, but Caine finds them fascinating. Caine has been called there to replace the former teacher who committed suicide, and one wonders if the same fate will befall him. While he was still in England, Caine dumped his former lover, Karina, in order to sever the

relationship cleanly before coming to the island. Karina arrives now and they reawaken their affair, but she is depressed because Caine seems more intrigued by Quinn and Bergen than by her. They spend a weekend in Athens, and, after she flies back to England (she's a stewardess), Caine learns that

she's killed herself. He accuses Quinn of being responsible for her death. Quinn then admits he is treating Bergen for her mental illness and that he was the mayor of a town who had three partisans beaten to death rather than sacrifice nearly 100 villagers to the Nazis. Suddenly, Caine is on trial

for egotism (seriously) and is told that he must beat Bergen as part of his own punishment. He can't do it. Later, he awakens and is told by Quinn that he attempted suicide. He races to the villa and finds it now abandoned, as though no one had lived there for years. Parts of the film are

spellbinding, but others are so cloaked in mystic lore and dizzying discrepancies that the audience is left blinking its eyes. Dead people come alive, live people no longer exist, etc.--it's like walking through a maze. Coproducer Kinberg is also a writer and was an executive for a while at ABC

Television where he oversaw many films, none as bad as this one.

Cast & Details See all »

  • Rating: R
  • Review: THE MAGUS is a most confusing drama, and unlike many confusing films that ultimately find their way, this one never does and ends as fuzzily as it began. Caine is an English teacher who arrives on the Greek island of Phraxos where he meets Quinn, a wealthy… (more)

Show More »

Trending TonightSee all »