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Review: Now You See Me 2

(L-r) Woody Harrelson, Dave Franco, Daniel Radcliffe, Lizzy Caplan and Jesse Eisenberg star in Lionsgate's NOW YOU SEE ME 2

You want movies that are different from the norm to be good and be financially successful. When those two things happen, there’s probably at least a chance of more unique films being released into the mainstream at some point in the future. That’s why stuff like this are important, so it sucks to see something like Now You See Me 2 fail to flourish.

Now You See Me 2 sees the Four Horseman (Jesse Eisenberg, Woody Harrelson, Dave Franco, Lizzy Caplan) return to the public’s view. Their goal was to expose the practices of a popular tech mogul, but it turns into something else once Walter Mabry (Daniel Radcliffe) enters the picture. Instead of allowing them to take on their intended mission, he’s forcing them to pull of the impossible. It seems tough, but a positive outcome sees them in a position to clear their names and reveal the real people behind everything.

While there are plenty of magic tricks, there isn’t exactly a great deal of magic in Now You See Me 2. I say that because what’s seen here is lifeless and dry. In my opinion, this mainly falls on the characters. In movies such as this one, it’s important to have interesting characters who are engaging enough to get and keep the attention of the audience.

Not only does that not happen here, but no one in this is all that likable or appealing. I guess a positive is that the protagonists aren’t people you can necessarily hate, but you have to be able to be fond of at least a few of them. Watching movies like this show you how important that is. Because even if the movie isn’t great, audiences can ignore the flaws and still get something out of it.

Out of all the characters in the film that are here to have issues with, the second character played by Woody Harrelson is easily the worst part of the movie. He’s starring in a duel role here as his character from the first film while also playing this character’s evil twin brother. I like Harrelson as an actor, but this shows that not every actor can play every type of character and he does his part to pull the movie down.

If you enjoyed the first film and are interested in the second, you’re probably watching for the magic. Some of this stuff is nice, but this doesn’t come without its flaws. The main issue here is that they feel the need to explain every single aspect of every single magic trick after it’s performed. This lengthens the movie unnecessarily, and makes it even more difficult to just sit back and enjoy as a movie goer.

Now You See Me was a surprise hit that I was happy to see do well. It’s unfortunate that its sequel isn’t good enough to reward people for their curiosity. A bit more excitement and a lot less of Woody Harrelson’s second character could have done a great deal to help in achieving that, but there probably would have been a need to improve the movie as a whole. When the lack of life in a movie is this obvious, you don’t have much a chance to succeed.

Rating: PG-13

Director: Jon M. Chu

Jesse Eisenberg
Mark Ruffalo
Woody Harrelson
Dave Franco
Daniel Radcliffe
Lizzy Caplan
Jay Chou
Sanaa Lathan
Morgan Freeman
Michael Caine

Film Length: 129 minutes

Release Date: June 10, 2016

Distributor: Lionsgate Films

  • Score - 3/10
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