“The closer you look, the less you’ll see”
This review will contain spoilers, so if you haven’t seen the film you may want to skip this review.
‘Is this your card?’ probably not as I’m not holding a card… nor have I shown you one. But the essence of the film: Now You See Me does involve magic and more specifically, magic tricks. To me, the movie itself is magic, providing a refreshing film that leaves you with all sorts of emotions and potentially quite confused (I may be speaking from my experience) The film also includes incredibly great visuals and a star-studded cast to match. Just imagine ‘magicians as criminals’ and that is Now You See Me summed up.
The plot of this film revolves around 4 amateur ‘magicians’ each with their own special technique in magic tricks. Whom are sent a mysterious letter by someone, telling them to meet at a location, when they all meet they realise they are being asked to join a mystical group known as ‘The Eye’. A year passes and the magicians hit the spotlight with a massive show that ends in a bank robbery. Placed on call is a FBI inspector, Dylan Rhodes who is also placed with a new French Detective from Interpol. (and plot cliché… is a woman/) Who are teamed up together to stop the magicians who are now criminals in some people’s eyes. The detectives team up with yet another ex-magician (is this harry potter?) who has a keen taste for exposing other magicians tricks to make money. Together they reveal how ‘The 4 horsemen’ (as the magicians are now known) managed to do their act. Eventually after a lot of failure and near captures (and magic tricks.) The two detectives have the horsemen in their sights and almost capture them all, before they end up ‘disappearing’ into thin air. It is revealed that the 4 horsemen have been doing the magic acts to gain access to the council of ‘The Eye’ and the man behind it all turns out to be… Dylan the F.B.I. Detective. Who helps the 4 horsemen gain access to the elusive club. (Confusing or what?!)
The all-star cast of Now You See Me adds a lot to the high standing of the film, it’s a movie full of very famous and great actors, and even some lesser known but still equally as great ones too. Mark Ruffalo plays his favourite sort of character in the film, a detective (and without a moustache this time) known as Dylan Rhodes, he plays the typical detective type character perfectly and really captures the impatient temperament and eagerness of his character. Who is obsessed with capturing the 4 horsemen. Another great actor who stood out for me was Dave Franco who can play being an as*hole down to an art. His acting will leave you physically shouting at the screen for him to get stopped or arrested. The rest of the cast fit right into the film perfectly and every actor played their character very well throughout, giving us a film that makes you hate and love the characters with ease.
Mitchell Amundsen and Larry Fong the cinematographers for the film, really capture the bright colours and far off and long shots involved in the film very well. The use of the close-ups helps with the magic tricks the film is based around and the far shots help provide the audiences reactions or even to show the police surrounding a building. Everything about the cinematography works and the visuals used are at times breathtaking and are too used in moderation so as not to blind us with CGI. The director Louis Leterrier brings his own spin the film too. Known for films such as ‘Transporter’ and ‘The Incredible Hulk’ Now You See Me, takes inspiration from some of those films and works to create a similar feel, but also adds so much more to it, creating a great visual masterpiece.
Despite my clear love for the film (why don’t you just marry it I hear you cry) it isn’t without its pitfalls, obviously. I haven’t talked about the ending much and despite its confusing greatness, it somehow feels a bit rushed and the mythology behind it feels like an afterthought on the writer’s behalf. Even though the actors in the film are all incredibly great at portraying their characters some of their character’s stories don’t seem fleshed out enough for the film, and not enough backstory is given. Leaving us trying to figure out the characters instead of fully enjoying what is on screen and the actors not achieving the best they could with the characters.
Overall despite its minor flaws just mentioned, I thoroughly enjoy Now You See Me, the film is keeps you on the edge of your seat and is well worth watching multiple times to fully grasp what is going on. And even to see some of the foreshadowing that is mentioned before the said event actually happens, I can’t stop talking about the great cast (who includes the legendary Morgan Freeman instantly making this film a classic.) Who all act to a very high degree, the magic tricks in the film seem believable and it’s even more fun watching them being exposed. Now You See Me is just a good film to sit through and watch and with the sequel already out on DVD (wrongly called Now You See Me 2 and not ‘Now You Don’t’) the excuses to not watch this film are wearing thin: Watch the film. Be amazed. Be confused. And have a great time throughout!
My Verdict: 4/5