Now You See Me (Louis Leterrier, 2013)
Still today, most of us are sceptic cynics and we want to know how a trick is done and we always try to see the strings that demonstrate how it works. I am one of those pricks. However, a part from us still wants to believe or be fooled or tricked. A well executed magic trick is like a well executed film. It is believable, natural, and the audience is entertained and doesn’t get the trickery. It might be this feeling of enjoying a great trick, or getting into a movie, that I like to get myself to believe for a moment. It is probably that, it makes me really enjoy moving pictures so much.
When a feature blends film and magic I immediately get interpelled by this form of entertainment. And when it involves Jesse Eisenberg, Mark Ruffalo, Woody Harrelson, Isla Fisher, Morgan Freeman, Dave Franco, Mélanie Laurent, and Michael Caine I believe we are in for some classy act. It so wants to be like a rendition of Ocean’s Eleven, a giant heist done with an outstanding ensemble cast that performs greater tricks than David Copperfield himself, Now You See Me felt a little flat on the plot side and the chracter development. But indeed, one gets entertained by Now You See Me and its hook.
The opening act that presents the four horsemen, Eisenberg, Harrelson, Fisher, and Franco is quite interesting and sets the table for a nice plot and mystery. However, this setup isn’t well exploited and the relationship and chemistry between the four magicians portrayed by talented actors would have been a rich source for witty dialogues and intrigues. Instead, few one liners are thrown here and there. One liners are mandatory nowadays and I don’t have much harsh against them. But a little more depth into the profile of the characters would have been interesting. The angle that the story took is the side of the investigation and here we also have a solid cast of Ruffalo and Laurent as respectively FBI and Interpol agents. Despite being done right, the investigation doesn’t really stand out from the traditional form and is far from being quite original. However, it’s execution is well done and gets you on hold guessing subsequently every character along the way.
Overall, it is not a disaster even if my observations seems quite severe, but with the cast, the premise, and those means it could have easily been a greater entertainment. It does achieve its goal of being a fun movie that wants to be an intelligent summer blockbuster. For me, if more blockbusters were of this kind I wouldn’t mind to watch more of them. However, it does not crosses the line into those outstanding movies of ensemble cast like the aforementioned Ocean’s Eleven or Inception.