Viewed – 20 September 2013 DVD
I love magic, from the likes of Penn & Teller to David Blaine and Cris Angel, so this was an easy pick for me. Four famed street magicians are brought together by a mystery organization known as The Eye to use their skills at illusion to pull off a series of elaborate heists. Yet an FBI agent (Mark Ruffalo) is hot on their heels, aided by a former magician (Morgan Freeman) who now hosts a TV show exposing the secrets behind so called magic tricks.
This is a very entertaining and cleverly plotted thriller, deftly put together by The Transporter’s Louis Leterrier and with several stand out performances, most notably the always interesting Mark Ruffalo and also Jesse Eisenberg, doing his geek/genius thing to perfection. Also on hand is a sexy Isla Fisher and an enjoyably dead-pan Woody Harrelson. For me the plot got a bit convoluted and some of the twists and turns were a little hard to swallow (especially the ending). Also by exploring a subject many still consider steeped in mystery, the ‘magic’ goes a tad over the top and far fetched, with unnecessary use of CGI. Also the motive for these clearly gifted illusionists turning to crime is not explored which I found hard to understand, especially when they clearly make them selves known for their crimes (?).
That being said the action, including an intense car chase and the illusions themselves make for a gripping and enjoyable experience over all, backed up by some very stylish looks. Just a shame its all a bit too frantic and clever (or complicated?) for its own good.
Verdict: 3 /5