8:00 PM, 1st November, 2013
It’s opening night and a Las Vegas casino is premiering its latest act: a quartet of master illusionists calling themselves The Four Horsemen. Their illusions are spectacular, but it’s the finale that quite literally stops the show as they appear to teleport a member of the audience all the way to the vault of his bank in Paris, and then rain down its entire contents on the theatre’s packed house.
When it’s discovered that the Parisian bank is actually short a few million Euros, the Robin-Hood-like illusionists are immediately apprehended by the FBI, but soon released due to a lack of any hard evidence linking them to the crime – unless, of course, the magic was real (spoiler alert: it’s not). The Horsemen then head back on tour, doggedly pursued across the country by an FBI agent (Ruffalo) determined to find out how they pulled the trick off – and to stop them before they do it again.
Now You See Me cleverly blends a tense cat-and-mouse thriller with the grandeur of stage magic for an incredibly fun and flashy – if slightly flimsy – cocktail of a film. Taking time off from creating Facebook, Jesse Eisenberg nails his role as the cocky leader of the Horsemen, with Woody Harrelson, Isla Fisher and Dave Franco (James’ younger brother) rounding out the rest of his crack team.
With plenty up its sleeves, Now You See Me is a cinematic sleight-of-hand that’s well worth a watch – just make sure you’re paying close attention!
10:11 PM, 1st November, 2013
Drift is a film made by a literal who’s who of Australian commercial television. It was co-directed by Ben Nott and Morgan O’Neill (“Home and Away”), stars Sam Worthington (“Water Rats”), Xavier Samuel (“McLeod’s Daughters”), Steve Bastoni (“Police Rescue”, “Neighbours”), and Myles Pollard (“Mcleod’s Daughters”, “Water Rats”, “Home and Away”). Needless to say it presents a certain “Neighbours”-esque counterfeit of Australian life, with characters given such lines as “yeah, I reckon” and “speeeeeech”, although to be fair that one was probably delivered impromptu.
Drift tells the story of the ‘Kelly’ brothers, a group of reckless Australian larrikins who, joined by their mother, escape what’s suggested is an abusive home and surf the big waves off rural Western Australian in the mid-1970s. Story established, cue plot development, enter JB, played by Sam Worthington, the mysterious yet helpful surf-photographing wizard figure who brings along the American love interest Lani. Now the rest of the plot comes crashing through, much like one of the big waves the Kellys love to surf; love squabbles, drug deals, bad guys, selling the family home and then a redemptive, yet inexplicable, surfing contest that resolves all the above problems.