Movie Review: Now You See Me *****

movie now you see me

Now You See Me is a heist movie with all the thefts being done by 4 magicians, known as the 4 Horsemen. They perform the thefts live while on stage–but it’s a magic show, right? What you think you see is not always what is actually happening. The local police, FBI, and INTERPOL get involved when the magicians rob a bank in France from Las Vegas (unbelievable and very cool). Then they dispense all of the money to the people in the audience. There is a debunker who makes himself available to the police. He helps them try to figure out how the illusions were done. Together they keep getting closer to the magician thieves. After the first robbery, the police know what will be stolen, when it will be stolen, and by whom, but have to figure out why and how, because the 4 Horsemen are all in plain view on stage while the money exchanges hands. A further mystery, is to find the mastermind and the motive for the crimes.

The 4 Horseman consist of a guy who does card tricks, a girl escape artist, a mentalist/hypnotist, and a street hustling magician. They are brought together by a mystery character they have not met. After each theft, the debunker, who is a former illusionist, recreates the crimes and describes to the authorities all the planning, execution, and illusion that is involved in pulling off the jobs in front of a live audience–including the police. The mystery builds to a final grand heist, an attempted escape, and a resolution.

The illusions were fabulous, the heists were ingenious, the acting was outstanding, and the story was very good. No cussing and no killing, and the movie was still full of action and mystery. I loved it. 5 out of 5 stars.  The movie is a lot like the Oceans 11 series. If you liked any of those movies, you will like “Now You See Me”


Published in: on May 31, 2013 at 3:21 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Movie Review: The Hangover III


movie hangover iii


The Hangover III is supposed to be the final chapter in the Hangover series. The same characters from “the wolfpack” are off on a new adventure. This time, there is no bachelor party, no hangover, and no lost time that needs to be reconstructed. Instead there is an intervention, a road trip, a kidnapping, a treasure hunt, and a life-or-death adventure for 3 friends and their tag-along misfit buddy. The story is good. The soundtrack is excellent. Scenes contain adult humor, drug use, crude language, animal cruelty, killing, and many references to the previous Hangover movies.

This edition could probably stand on its own, but the punch lines will be much clearer if episodes I & II have already been viewed. “Chow” is back and shares the main character role with his new best friend “Alan”. Chow has stolen millions of dollars in gold bars and the wolfpack is forced to find him and the treasure or face dire consequences. The search leads them to Las Vegas where they all have bad memories from their first Hangover.

This movie was more of a drama than a comedy. The story flowed, was well told, and easy to follow. The humor was accidental and infrequent. Those who expect a fall down funny movie will be extremely disappointed. Those who want to see misfits take on a monumental challenge will be entertained.

The credits begin to roll and there is additional footage which leads us to believe that there will be at least one more Hangover in the near future. This added segment is the best part of Hangover III and is absolutely worth the price of admission.  The weakest movie of the trilogy, but still worth a look–best to view on cheap movie night or when out with the guys. I give it 3 out of 5 stars.

We can still see a new release movie at Premiere Theater in Hillsdale for just $7.25. We go as often as we can.

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Published in: on May 30, 2013 at 3:16 pm  Comments (1)  
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Movie Review: The Great Gatsby

movie the great gastby

In The Great Gatsby, Nick Carraway is a struggling young stockbroker in a New York asylum during the 1920’s. He tells his analyst a story about the neighbor who befriended him. His news friend is a mysterious wealthy young man named Jay Gatsby. Gatsby has riches beyond belief, a past filled with rumor and innuendo, influential friends in government and business, and throws lavish parties that he doesn’t attend. These weekly events are frequented by hundreds of uninvited guests with a motive we do not discover until the end. For some reason, he takes a liking to Nick and includes him on many extravagant experiences. Everyone is in love with somebody else, and most everyone is unhappy with their life. Plans are made and secrets are kept. The past is past and what’s done is done. The movie is full of deceit and overindulgence, wealth and despair, dreams and ambitions, plus an inescapable past and everlasting love.

I didn’t care for Tobey Maguire’s ‘Nick’ in the first few minutes, but he grew on me quickly and became a very good character. Leonardo DiCaprio was an exceptional ‘Jay Gatsby’.  He was believable as a rich and powerful aristocrat. He reminded me of a young version of “the most interesting man in the world”. There is a possibility for an Academy Award nomination to DiCaprio for this performance. I remember not appreciating F. Scott Fitzgerald’s book back in high school. I remember not being impressed by the Robert Redford movie. I loved this rendition of ‘The Great Gatsby’. The story is interesting and was well told, the acting was superb, and the modern soundtrack worked. 5 out of 5 stars.

At Premiere Theater in Hillsdale Michigan, we can still see a first run movie on a Saturday night for just $7.25. For that, I am grateful and am happy to patronize this local movie venue.
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Published in: on May 27, 2013 at 2:50 pm  Comments (1)  
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