I finally got around to watching Now You See Me, and to be honest, it was much more entertaining to watch than I had anticipated.
Now You See Me is directed by Louis Leterrier, who directed The Transporter films, Clash of the Titans, The Incredible Hulk and other fun actioner films.
The production team included Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orci.
The cast includes Dave Franco, Michael Kelly, Mark Ruffalo, Mélanie Laurent, Isla Fisher, Morgan Freeman, Woody Harrelson, Michael Caine, Jesse Eisenberg, Common, Caitriona Balfe and Elias Koteas.
I wasn’t quite sure what to expect and that is possibly what helped me see this for what it was, and that was just sublime, entertaining fun. The kind of fun where you find yourself rooting for the bad guys.
The movie starts where we watch four different magicians plying their trade in one locale or another, all the while, a man in a hooded sweatshirt is seen watching each magician at these scenes. We only see him from behind. Later, each of the four players get a tarot-like card containing a message and an address to be at, at a specific date and time. They all meet there and discover they have been hired by a brilliant head master, so to speak, to pull off some incredible bank heists.
The magicians are Dave Franco, Isla Fisher, Woody Harrelson and Jesse Eisenberg. Franco is the highly skilled thief, Harrelson is the mentalist, Fisher is the classic magician and Eisenberg is what he does best, a fast talking, full of himself, highly skilled master of illusion. Eisenberg is excellent at playing arrogant characters.
Michael Kelly, Mark Ruffalo, Melanie Laurent and Common play the law enforcement leads in pursuit of these criminal magicians.
Ruffalo plays the more intensely focused cop, going crazy all out trying to catch these crooks, who always manage to manipulate the situation and be one step ahead all the time.
This film was put together brilliantly as far as I am concerned. One of the first scenes is Eisenberg pulling off a “pick a card” trick on a pretty young lady. And it was done well enough that he picked the card THAT I CHOSE while watching.
While watching the movie, you MUST keep in mind one line Eisenberg says, and that’s while you watch too closely you miss the bigger picture, or as he actually says, “The closer you think you are, the less you actually see.”
The film moves from one moment to the next in a quick fluid flow, making the viewer’s jaw drop in how these “Four Horsemen” pull of their goals, all in plain site with no direct evidence that can be found to arrest and convict them.
They’re so likable that it is fun to root for them as they pull off one twist and turn after the other. You find yourself reveling in the police forces failure to capture them.
In the end you learn about the various redirects used by our anti-heroes. Redirects that even kept the viewer off balance at first, but as the third act is in full swing, there are multiple surprises and twists to pull this off. They’re all like layers of an onion, one after the other in some instances.
While watching this film, I could not help but think of the huge redirections we experienced in Christopher Nolan’s The Prestige. All surprising and brilliant.
If you haven’t caught Now You See Me in one form or another, I would suggest picking it up and prepare yourself for a fairly well paced bit of entertainment.
Now You See Me on Amazon