Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Now You See Me (2013) - Review

Now I don't

What was it with 2013 and magic-themed movies?  I mean, I guess there were only two, but that's still two too many.  Now maybe that's not entirely fair; this isn't necessarily a bad movie, but it sure is forgettable, because I don't remember too much about it (there seems to be a trend going here).

James?  You're here to save this...wait it's Dave Franco
The first half of the movie follows the "criminal" magicians that appear to steal a ton of money from a vault during a live show.  Jesse Eisenberg, James Franco's less appealing brother, Woody Harrelson, and Isla Fisher are doing this magic schtick because they're trying to get into this crazy elite magician's circle.

Right away, it's made clear that it's magic, as in illusions.  But by the end of the movie, it kind of teases that real magic might exist, which is completely out of place with the tone of the film.  I mean, it's a pretty standard crime caper chase movie... not much room for literal magic, now is there?

As the magicians flee FBI agent Mark Ruffalo, we learn a bit about him, and this is by far the most boring part of the movie.  Look, I like Mark Ruffalo, but is this really what people want to see when they watch a movie about magicians?  Some cop with a lot of demons?  And yes, those are figurative demons.  I dunno, I personally just couldn't get into the pacing of the movie; the first part with the actual illusions were far more entertaining, but even they have their problems.  For one, there is ENTIRELY too much CGI (as in, any) during the magic sequences; it sort of ruins the entire premise of the movie.  The idea is that these people are doing mind-blowing things... practically!  It shouldn't be people standing on a stage while a computer does all the "mind-blowing".  It's like CGI'ing blood, or steam, or anything that could easily be done.  It's unnecessary and really obnoxious.

Overall, it's not a bad movie by any stretch, but even with a run-time under two hours, it tends to drag in multiple spots.  There's just not enough interesting stuff going on in a movie that is mostly based on illusions.  Maybe the movie should have just stayed in the shadows.

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