‘Now you see me.’ I just couldn’t remember you 5 minutes later!

Now you see me....‘Now you see me’ is the new magic themed caper movie by director Louis Leterrier. I’m a sucker for any good caper movie and  likely to be especially enthused if there is a magic theme involved. However, this one really didn’t do more than fill in a couple of hours of a quiet Sunday for me. In all honesty the cinema was crowded and the audience seemed a lot more enthusiastic than I was– I still can’t quite understand why. The plot had more holes than a mountain of Swiss cheese and even cheesier in a slick kinda’ way. I didn’t hate it when I was watching it, but by the time the titles had finished rolling I had pretty much forgotten it.

The storyline revolves around a team of four magicians (The Four Horsemen) who use their magic to commit a series of ever escalating robberies while being tracked by a FBI/Interpol team led by Mark Ruffalo and Melanie Laurent. The ‘Horsemen’ are played by; Jesse Eisenberg, Woody Harrelson, Isla Fisher and Dave Franco. The best part of the movie for me was the opening scenes that united this essentially non-disparate team of magicians into a sophisticated bunch of high tech bank robbers. Two of my favorite actors are along for the ride in character roles, the ever reliable Michael Caine and Morgan Freeman.

Michael Caine plays a wealthy insurance magnet, who for some unexplained reason decides to bankroll ‘The Four Horsemen’ into becoming mega stars performing in arena like settings. This must have been one of those movies where Caine freely admits money was a key factor in his involvement. Freeman plays an ex-magician who has turned magical ‘secret buster.’ He is wealthy enough in this role to be able to turn down a 5 million dollar offers to abandon focusing on ‘The Horsemen’  in his next special. I wonder if anyone has told Val Valentino AKA the masked magician that there is this much money in magic de-bunking specials? Fox TV must be worried that he will expect a bonanza payday for his next tacky TV outing.

If you are a magic buff then there is little to rivet your attention to the action, if you like clever caper movies — well, it wasn’t that clever!  I guess Eisenberg and the youthful side of the cast must have some very solid fans out there as the movie has scared up a $61,374,000 gross since it’s May 31st release. Probably rather more cash than the Ricky Jay documentary ‘Deceptive Practice, The Mysteries and Mentors of Ricky Jay.’ Life isn’t fair sometimes– but there you go.

I suppose if you lower your expectations sufficiently then you might enjoy the movie if you are a magic buff. I personally am waiting with bated breath for the DVD release of the Ricky Jay documentary and hoping for lots of neat extras.

~ by Nick Lewin on June 10, 2013.

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