Movie Review: Now You See Me

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Summit Entertainment

Summit Entertainment

Now You See Me, Now you don’t. Several magicians band together on orders from an unseen force to create the greatest magical group act The Four Horsemen and pull off daring heists. Merritt, a mentalist (Woody Harrelson), Henley, an escape artist (Isla Fisher), Jack Wilder, a slight of hand magician (Dave Franco) and Atlas an overall jack of all trades magician (Jesse Eisenberg) are all called to what they believe is a path to join The Eye, a magician brotherhood even older than the Free Masons, by an unknown character to viewers as well as the magicians themselves. When they have their huge Vegas show and rob a bank in another country they grab the attention of the FBI and Interpol. Also following behind them is Thaddeus Bradley (Morgan Freeman), a magician debunker. With the financial backing on their shows by Arthur Tressler (Michael Caine) the team have planned a set of 3 very daring heists at the direction of their hidden boss. FBI chief Evans (Common) pairs reluctant Agent Rhodes (Mark Ruffalo) with Interpol Agent Dray (Mélanie Laurent). Rhodes is a skeptic who feels this is beneath him till the interrogation of the Four Horsemen after the initial bank heist changes his mind.

NYSM-Movie

Summit Entertainment

The visual magic is good, Woody Harrelson makes the mentalist scenes hilarious. Its clear as the movie progresses the four were chosen because each is good at various things but none are the total package. None of them knew Jack wilder, Henley and Atlas used to be a magic team, and Merritt used to be a big magician but is now considered a has-been. By teaming up they manage to dazzle everyone and still stay way ahead of the FBI. Even when Rhodes and Dray consult with Thaddeus who explains to them exactly how the bank heist was pulled off, we are reminded that they team spent a year following directions and planning to pull this off and the sequence of the other 2 acts. They aren’t amateurs and weren’t before it started, but together they are leaps and bounds above everyone.

Summit Entertainment

Summit Entertainment

Now You See Me has some great locations shots as the 3 major heists take place in Las Vegas, New York, and New Orleans. I was impressed with the NYC location shots and happy every time I see a movie that actually still films in New Orleans. The comedy level is pretty entertaining as well. It goes beyond the tricks, there is a real story here that if you aren’t paying attention you will fall for the same indirection. The movie even starts to pull in the audience with the opening card trick which I’m willing to bet Atlas guesses your card. The twist ending raises the bar for me. I was completely in the dark the entire time of who the recruiter was and when listening to audience members as they left there were several theories and nobody was correct. Its rare a movie keeps you guessing till well into the 3rd act and I’m impressed by that. I give this movie a Matinee. The character development is a little thin because of the twist ending and I get why its that way for most of the leads. One you don’t get till the very end of the film and its there to tie everything together. Enjoy the tricks but stay for the story. You can watch the first  minutes of the movie in the video below. You get to see the Four Horsemen when they are all separate acts.

My rating: Matinee
Director: Louis Leterrier
Studio: Summit Entertainment
Release Date: May 31, 2013
Run time: 115 minutes
MPAA Rating: PG-13

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