The Review at a Glance: (max score: 5 )
Audio/Video total rating:
( Max score: 100 )
Studio and Year: Summit - 2013
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Feature running time: 115/125 minutes
Disc Format: BD-50
Encoding: AVC (MPEG-4)
Video Aspect: 2.40:1
Audio Format(s): English DTS-HD 7.1 Master Audio, English/Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish
Starring: Jesse Eisenberg, Isla Fisher, Mark Ruffalo, Woody Harrelson, Melanie Laurent, Dave Franco, Common, Morgan Freeman, Michael Caine
Directed by: Louis Leterrier
Music by: Brian Tyler
Written by: Ed Solomon, Boaz Yakin, Edward Ricourt
Region Code: A
Blu-ray Disc release Date: September 3, 2013
“The Four Horsemen,” a super-team of the world’s greatest illusionists, pull off a series of daring heists while evading a squad of FBI agents and an Interpol detective trying to stop them before their most daring final trick!
The Four Horsemen, a magic super-group led by the charismatic J. Daniel Atlas (Eisenberg), perform a pair of high-tech, high-profile magic shows. First amazing audiences by remotely robbing a Paris bank while in Las Vegas, and then exposing a white-collar criminal and funneling his millions into the audience members' bank accounts, baffling the authorities. FBI Special Agent Dylan Rhodes (Ruffalo) is determined to make the magicians pay for their crimes—and to stop them before they pull off what promises to be an even more audacious heist. But he's forced to partner with Alma (Laurent), an Interpol detective about whom he is instantly suspicious. Out of desperation, he turns to a famed magic debunker, who claims the Paris bank trick was actually a meticulously planned illusion. Dylan and Alma begin to wonder if the Horsemen have an outside point person. If so, finding him (or her) would be the key to ending the magicians' crime spree. But who could it be? Or…could it really be…magic?
Now you see me is designed to be a slick, stylish crime thriller that not only uses magic in the plot but magic on the audience. It borrows heavily from better films with its group based scenario, slight of hand theme and purposefully sneaky twist that even though you may not see coming still feels like a bit of a letdown. The narrative is frenetically paced with an over the top series of improbable situations that do turn out to be pretty entertaining to watch. The characters are vaguely drawn but I didn’t find that to be detrimental especially given the storyline’s context. The script is on the shallow side but the element of mystery that plays out to the end almost makes that seem like a given. I will say that what it lacks in substance it makes up for in style as there are a variety of engaging slippery turns, silly thrills and abracadabra moments that provide an entertaining bit of escapism (pun intended). I liked the choices for the cast and found the eclectic mix of actors to be quite complimentary.
In the end Now you see me is more popcorn flick fodder than anything else but depending on your point of view that isn’t a bad thing. For me it was an enjoyable way to spend a couple of hours. Summit has included both the theatrical version and a 16 minute longer extended cut. I watched the former and given the fact that I liked it will soon check out the extended cut.
The film contains language, some action and brief sexual content.
AUDIO/VIDEO - By The Numbers:
REFERENCE = 92-100 / EXCELLENT = 83-91 / GOOD = 74-82 / AVERAGE = 65-73 / BELOW AVERAGE = under 65
**My audio/video ratings are based upon a comparative made against other high definition media/blu-ray disc.**
(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)
- Low frequency extension:
- Surround Sound presentation:
- Dialogue Reproduction:
(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)
- Black level/Shadow detail:
- Color reproduction:
Now you see me comes to Blu-ray Disc from Summit Home Entertainment featuring 1080p AVC encoded video that has an average bitrate of 21 Mbps and lossless DTS-HD 7.1 Master Audio sound that has an average bitrate of 5.8 Mbps.
This is a solid high definition transfer that looks excellent. Images are transparent with exquisite detail and a near infinite sense of depth. Fidelity is never in question regardless of perspective. At times I found the visual style to be engaging. The chromatic range varies depending on the mood of a particular scene and can be underscored with sepia tones, cool bluish green or natural light. That combined with the use of shading, thematic lighting schemes and eclectic cinematography imparts an inordinate and interesting quality. Skin tones among the cast don’t vary much and fall in line with the look of the film. Blacks are inky, dynamic and stable and contrast is boldly applied without overdriving whites/grays and washing out detail. This is a noticeably stylized and impressive high definition video presentation that looked great on my big screen.
The is an excellent DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack that features crystal clear dialogue, powerful dynamics and a subtly aggressive and involving surround sound mix. I was impressed with the implementation of both spacial dimension and discrete directional sounds that created an occasionally immersive listening environment. This worked hand in hand with film’s music, and thematic elements to build tension and help drive the story. Evidence of this can be heard in scenes like the apartment fight sequence followed by the extended car chase which fill the room with the low level punch of crashing vehicles coupled with a variety of room traversing effects. Be sure to turn this one up when things get busy.
- Extended Director’s Cut
- Audio Commentary with Producer Bobby Cohen and Director Louis Leterrier (Theatrical version Only)
- (HD) Now You See Me Revealed – 15 minute featurette
- (HD) A Brief History of Magic (hosted by magician David Kwong) – 11 minute featurette
- (HD) 13 Deleted Scenes
- (HD) Theatrical & teaser trailers
- Bonus DVD
- Digital Copy
- Ultraviolet Digital Copy
Here is the trailer:
Now you see me is a slick, stylish crime thriller that favors flair over substance but has enough merit to engage genre fans that have no problem checking their brains at the door. It comes to Blu-ray Disc from Summit Home Entertainment featuring excellent high definition audio/video quality and a supplemental package that includes an extended cut of the film, filmmaker commentary, deleted scenes and a pair of featurettes. If you’re already a fan this Blu-ray offering is worth picking up otherwise it easily qualifies as a top pick on movie rental night.
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