Now You See Me (2013) Review by Shivom Oza – Just Not ‘Magical’ Enough
Director Louis Leterrier (of ‘Transporter’, ‘Transporter 2’, ‘Clash Of The Titans’ and ‘The Incredible Hulk’ fame) brings together distinguished actors (Morgan Freeman, Michael Caine, Mark Ruffalo, Woody Harrelson, Isla Fisher and Jesse Eisenberg) for this film, which revolves around the world of magic.
The screenplay is crisp and fast-paced, and the performances are brilliant. However, the climax (with the supposedly unfathomable twist in the end) leaves a lot to be desired. However, ‘Now You See Me’ is very much watchable. It will keep you engaged through its duration of two hours, and the premise is quite interesting. Clichéd, but interesting enough!
Four street-magicians, J. Daniel Atlas (Jesse Eisenberg), Merritt McKinney (Woody Harrelson), Henley Reeves (Isla Fisher) and Jack Wilder (Dave Franco), receive mysterious invitations from an entity named 'The Eye'. Four of them, who happen to vaguely know about each other, land up at the given address only to be greeted with an empty house laden with a few surreal objects.
A year later, these four street-magicians turn into big-time stage illusionists in Las Vegas. Referred to as 'The Four Horsemen', the team is sponsored by Arthus Tressler (Michael Caine), who is an insurance magnate.
The magicians decide to end this show by pulling off their biggest trick – a bank robbery.
So, their volunteer is apparently tele-ported to a bank in Paris, where he activates an air-duct, which sucks up the money and transports it to the show in Las Vegas.
FBI agent Dylan Rhodes (Mark Ruffalo) and Interpol Agent Alma Vargas (Melanie Laurent) are called upon to investigate into the theft. We are also introduced to Thaddeus Bradley (Morgan Freeman), an ex-magician who makes money by revealing the secrets behind other magicians' tricks. Thaddeus goes on to play an important part in the film's story.
What follows is a cat-and-mouse game between the law enforcement and 'The Four Horsemen'!
The element of suspense is inherent through the film, as you can never figure out who the 'bad guys' are till the climactic moments. The magic tricks, pulled off in this film, are clichéd but presented in a lavish manner. Visually, the film is brilliant and credit for that should go to the people behind the production design, and the director. The dialogues, especially, deserve special mention.
Concept-wise, the film had the potential to be way better than what it was. It falters at the moments where it matters the most. In films of other genres, if the climax of a brilliant film is a bit underwhelming, it is still forgivable. However, in a film like this, where a viewer's perspective can be overturned just by the ending, ‘Now You See Me’ leaves a lot to be desired.
‘Now You See Me’ is fairly entertaining. However, with a better-written climax, it could have been way superior. It's quite watchable though.
What other families should know
Great role models
Too much violence
Too much consumerism
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking