Sunday, 30 June 2013


Format Watched: In theatres (Tuesday June 25, 2013)
Approx. Runtime: 115 minutes (1 hours, 55 minutes)
Language Watched: English
Type of Movie: Heist, Magic, Mystery, Caper
Overall Impression: Very entertaining and fun!

PERSONAL STANDING (Pre-exposures, thoughts, etc.)
My first exposure to Now You See Me was its trailer. I have an interest in magic, so the idea of the movie really drew me in.

Now You See Me trailer

Since, Now You See Me has been on my "To-Watch in Theatres" list.

Now You See Me is about four solo magicians who join together (and name themselves The Four Horsemen) to pull off a major magic trick: robbing a bank. They are arrested, but released soon after due to lack of a logical explanation to the crime. The main narrative perspective then shifts to Dylan Rhodes, the FBI agent who is assigned to investigate and catch them (with hard evidence) before they commit their final third act.

During all this, there is also an ex-magician attempting to expose the Four Horsemen's magic tricks.

Overall, I find the story intriguing and fun. It starts off pretty mysterious, but things get unraveled at a good pace. I remembered moments where I would process some information given to me, later to go "Aha! So that's why this happened..."

The acting is great. I found them all believable. Extra kudos to Dave Franco. Even though I saw the trailer, I didn't realize that he was in it until the movie started. After seeing him in multiple places (Scrubs, 21 Jump Street, and Warm Bodies), he's kinda growing on me, and I was quite excited to see him here.

Here is my small criticism for Now You See Me: there is very little characterization. We do see some characterization for Dylan and his partner Alma Dray. But for the Four Horsemen, there is next to nothing. We get a general idea of each of their talents, with a sliver of a backstory for a few of them.

Among the Four Horsemen, Daniel acts as the leader and specializes in general, classic magic. Henley acts more as an assistant to Daniel, and was Daniel's assistant (and lover) in the past. Merritt McKinney is a mentalist and used to be renowned and famous. Jack Wilder... well, I don't remember the movie ever revealing his past at all or his story (which is disappointing). We first see Jack's specialty as a lock-picker, but he actually has another talent -- a very useful talent (I'm not saying what it is).

Now... I only find this to be a small criticism, because for a movie like this, I don't think the main focus are all the characters and their history; the main focus is the plot -- and the magic! Through the plot, we see some character development, some character motivations, some whatever... but only those that relate and drive the plot forward.

Of course, it would be nice to see more characterization, but for Now You See Me, I don't think it's absolutely necessary.

From Left to Right: Henley Reeves, Daniel Atlas, Merritt McKinney, Jack Wilder.

Besides the main theme song, I barely noticed the music. So I Youtubed the soundtrack, and it sounds really good! No wonder why I barely noticed it -- it goes so well with the overall mood and atmosphere of the movie. The music tends to have a trance feel to it, but it also has some unearthly, magical vibe to it -- a bit suspenseful, orchestral, and edgy with "grand overtones" (haha, I sound like I know exactly what I'm talking about).

Here's the track I heard and remembered while watching Now You See Me:

"Now You See Me" by Brian Tyler.

The magic tricks in Now You See Me are pretty cool. You get to see some classic tricks, and then you see some really neat ones. Of course, being a movie, I kinda figure that the really neat ones are rigged in whatever way to make it look like a real magic trick (but is most likely impossible to do in real life). Regardless, it's still very fun and entertaining to see.

Add the ex-magician character and you get to see a rational hypothesis of how some of the the tricks are done.

Daniel Atlas growing a bubble, preparing for a really cool trick.

I can sum up Now You See Me in two words: Fun and Entertaining. If you're looking for a movie with complex character backstories, unfortunately you won't get that here. However, if you're looking for something light and entertaining (and with magic!), Now You See Me is highly recommended.

Thanks for reading! If you want some more input about something I didn't cover, feel free to ask. :)

Usually I would have a "Spoilers" section here, but I think I covered everything I wanted to talk about.

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