Now You See Me (2013) Miller Meter-4/10

Directed By:  Louis Leterrier

Written By:  Ed Solomon, Boaz Yakin, Edward Ricourt

Starring:  Jesse Eisenberg, Mark Ruffalo, Woody Harrelson, Isla Fisher, Dave Franco, Morgan Freeman

PG-13     1 h 55 min – Crime | Mystery | Thriller

Well starring in this one we have Jesse Eisenberg, Woody Harrelson, Mark Ruffalo, Isla Fisher, Melanie Laurent, Michael Caine and Morgan Freeman.  With a cast like this you would think it would be pretty hard to get it wrong.  A group of magicians cross paths when they are all separately invited to meet up for an unknown purpose.  The characters are immediately antagonistic to each other (without much explanation as to why) which were pretty rough to get through.  Daniel Atlas (Eisenberg) was the pseudo leader of the pack, as he was the most known and successful.  Following closely behind was Henley Reeves (Fisher) who was also doing pretty well on the magic circuit.  Merritt (Harrelson) is a “mentalist” or a clairvoyant mind-reading con-artist, so to speak.  They’re fourth was Jack Wilder (Dave Franco) who’s the meek and timid new comer.  So a year after they first meet they are a new act calling themselves “The Four Horsemen” travelling around performing magic together.  It gets interesting when for their finale in Vegas they decide to rob a bank and give the money they steal (via a poor innocent Frenchman) to the audience.  Enter antagonist Dylan Rhodes (Ruffalo) an FBI agent who’s stuck up and really hates magic.  The four horsemen run and run around the world, performing more illegal magic that’s pissing off the FBI.

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That’s the rest of the film.  Ummmm.  Ok first of all, Jesse Eisenberg was incorrectly casted.  I’m not saying that I agree with his usual type-casted nerdy eloquent “I talk so fast you have no choice but to think I’m smart” characters, but this was out of his league.  Also, The Four Horseman are HARDLY in the film, at all!  It’s so focused on the FBI and the chase, that you barely see these characters at all. In the beginning I was rather entertained especially by Woody Harrelson’s character, but after his intro you see him for maybe a cumulative 10 minutes.  I’m going to be blunt the story was senseless.  There was no meat to it, no sensibility or purpose.  I was watching it thinking “I really don’t care what happens to these characters because the plot lost me 18 minutes in”.  Morgan Freeman shows up, fiddles about for a little while and leaves, I still can’t wrap my head around why he was even there.  **SPOILER ALERT**  The ending was absolutely dumbfounding.  Ooooh cool the antagonist was really the protagonist…get it?!?! Woooowww!  They resolve the four horsemen but because there is so little about them throughout the film I really had no feelings about it one way or the other.  Ed Solomon, Boaz Yakin, and Edward Ricourt are responsible for this tragedy of a screenplay.  Hopefully the fact that the film cost 75 million to make and only pulled in 29 opening weekend sent those 3 a message and gave them something to think about.  If there’s a sequel I will most definitely boycott it via follow up article on why a sequel is the worst idea ever.  A very, very weak film, I don’t recommend it.

 

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