Now You See Me 2 Film Review

Film Review by Jon E Clist

The Premise
One year after outwitting the FBI and winning the public's adulation with their Robin Hood-style magic spectacles, The Four Horsemen resurface for a comeback performance in hopes of exposing the unethical practices of a tech magnate. The man behind their vanishing act is none other than Walter Mabry, a tech prodigy who threatens the Horsemen into pulling off their most impossible heist yet. Their only hope is to perform one last unprecedented stunt to clear their names and reveal the mastermind behind it all.

The Review
Would it be too much of a bad pun to say that this film is magic? Ah well, I guess time will tell. Anyway on to the review. Here we have a sequel to a film that brought quite a fresh idea to the big screen. Using staged magic to take down a villain. The first in this franchise was a rather fresh take on the world of illusionists and street magic. It created quite the thrill ride and was able to insert plenty of plot twists and turns to capture your imagination and take you on quite the journey.

So the big question when a sequel to such a movie comes out, is can a follow-up still bring something fresh to build upon that initial surprise that a new concept brings? For me it does, there are plenty of little moments that add weight to the original concept and a few twists that unfold nicely along the way.

One of the elements that I like about this film franchise is that not everything is answered by the end of the film. That is how magic needs to be approached. When we watched the Ocean’s Eleven films we saw towards the end exactly how things were done via flashbacks, however here there are still plenty of little tricks along the way that are left unanswered. Such as Eisenberg falling back into a puddle and disappearing. (No spoiler here as that shot is in the trailer)

Of course there is no Isla Fisher here, which is supposedly because she was pregnant around the time of filming with a little borat. However, I have to say that Lizzy Caplan is a welcome addition and in my humble opinion brings something a lot better to the role. Sure this is a new character but there is some quirky fun that ends up adding a new dimension to the characters’ chemistry with each other.

If you loved the first one as much as I did and are excited for this one, don’t let your excitement stop there as a third instalment was announced over a year before this movie. Huge stuff really, so we are destined to see a lot more movie magic yet.

The best addition to this film is the wonderful Daniel Radcliffe finally playing the role it would seem he was really made for, the nerdy villain. What a refreshing sight to see for those of us who endured seven films of Harry Potter and were kind of thinking that this was a role he would be destined to never get passed.

The Verdict
All class with plenty of laughs and some sweet as screen magic.

The Trailer

The Info
Releases: 9th June 2016
Rating: M – Contains violence
Duration: 129 minutes 
Genre:  Action/Thriller
Starring: Lizzy Caplan, Daniel Radcliffe, Jesse Eisenberg, Mark Ruffalo, Woody Harrelson
Director: Jon M. Chu (Jem and The Holograms, GI Joe Retaliation)

The Extras
Now You See Me 2 will be the sixth time Morgan Freeman and Michael Caine appear in the same project. They previously starred together in Freedom: a History of Us, Batman Begins, The Dark Knight, The Dark Knight Rises and Now You See Me. They are set to star together a seventh time in Going in Style.

The newly joined actor Jay Chou is not only fond of singing, song composing, and acting, but also of magic performing. Being a megastar in the Chinese region, Chou has played magic tricks, especially card tricks, in several popular TV shows in Taiwan and Mainland China.

Many actors in the film have starred in films based on comic books: Morgan Freeman and Michael Caine in Batman Begins (2005), The Dark Knight (2008), and The Dark Knight Rises (2012), Jessie Eisenberg in Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice (2016), and Mark Ruffalo in The Avengers (2012), Iron Man 3 (2013), and Avengers: Age of Ultron (2015).

Woody Harelson and Jessie Eisenberg had previously starred together in Zombieland (2009) and Now You See Me (2013).

To be filmed after Jay Chou's marriage in London with Hannah Quinlivan.