A magical documentary: 'Deceptive Practice'

05:00 AM, Apr 24, 2013

Magician and actor Ricky Jay is the subject of a new documentary. Theo Westenberger/


Written By by Whitney Matheson, USA TODAY

I’ll be honest: When I heard there was a new movie about Ricky Jay, the name didn’t ring a bell.

But as soon as I heard the voice, I knew exactly who Ricky Jay was. Though I initially recognized him as the narrator from Magnolia, the actor’s other credits include Boogie Nights, Deadwood and Tomorrow Never Dies.

Jay is also a pretty famous magician; he even once held a Guinness World Record for throwing a playing card 190 feet at 90 miles per hour. In the ’70s he appeared on The Tonight Show, Dinah! and other talk shows and wowed audiences with his sleight-of-hand tricks.

So how does a guy from Brooklyn become a world-famous illusionist? The documentary Deceptive Practiceexamines Jay’s life and career, and much of it is told in his very familiar voice.

Deceptive Practice is now playing in New York and soon opens in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Denver, Atlanta, Boston, Minneapolis and many other cities.

Watch the trailer, which includes commentary by pals like David Mamet:

Man, I want to meet this guy. For more Ricky Jay, just search the name on YouTube, and you’ll come up with a goldmine. Below is a cool trick that impresses a bunch of guys (including actors John C. Reilly and Willie Garson):