The Congress of Wonders (1994) Trailer
Trailer for the short The Congress of Wonders.
From Tod Brownings Freaks to Fellini's 8 1/2, the movie has been watching itself through the lens of the circus. And from Huck Finn to the Confidence Man to the Invisible Man, American fiction has been reading into itself, uncovering the shyster, the protean fraud, who at some point buys into his own beguiling bill of goods.
Now all this tragic grandeur comes down to a raggedy trinity of bunko artists who ply their wares and make their pitch at a Kentucky country crossroads. Transparent phonies who nonetheless have all too genuine access--however accidental--to the Real Deal.
At once a coming-of-age story, a mock epic of southern gothic comedy, and a homegrown piece of magical realism, The Congress of Wonders finds Ed McClanahan's classic story turned into an equally funny, arresting, and ultimately tragic film.