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This historical drama is based on the true story of controversial medical pioneer Franz Anton Mesmer. In 18th century Vienna, Mesmer (Alan Rickman) believes that many of the favored medical treatments of the day -- most notoriously the inducement of bleeding to remove harmful "humors" from the body -- are both dangerous and ineffective to the patients they are intended to treat. Mesmer believes that gentler methods could have a more positive impact on his patients. Believing in what he calls "animal magnetism," Mesmer uses ...

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