It’s best to think of Now You See Me as a superhero movie, except instead of fighting with superhuman strength and speed, the heroes use their superhuman brains and wits.
They’re all magicians, and they’ve been recruited by a mysterious figure to join forces to gain, well. . .the film is never completely clear on that, but it has to do with achieving total clarity or somethin’. (So they’ve got that.)
I absolutely loved the opening of the film, as we meet each of the magicians: Cocky David Blaine-esque J. Daniel Atlas (Jesse Eisenberg, doing a variation of his Mark Zuckerberg, only with emo hair); crafty mentalist Merritt McKinney (Woody Harrelson); Atlas’s assistant-turned-sexy-headliner Henley Reeves (Isla Fisher); and an Artful Dodger-style street magician named Jack Wilder (Dave Franco).
In those opening scenes, at least, their magic seems credible, grounded in some sort of semi-believable reality.
But once they join forces—nicknaming themselves The Four Horseman—their tricks become increasingly over-the-top and incredible. They immediately perform an astonishing trick where they “teleport” a man to France and have him rob his own bank. Then, they give the money to the...