Now You See Me 2: Review

A sequel to one of the biggest surprises of 2013, Now You See Me 2 could be best described as Mission: Impossible with magicians. Like all good follow-ups, this raises the stakes considerably as the Robin Hood-esque gang from the first film, the four horsemen, are dragged into a globe-trotting adventure filled with bigger and even more ludicrous tricks.

Set a year after the events of the first film, the horsemen are brought out of hiding to sabotage an event led by a corrupt head of a communciations company . This time the trick is on the heroes though as they are forced to abandon their plan, escaping through a tube that somehow ends up in China. There, they are forced to steal a circuit board for the evil Walter Mabry – played by the welcome addition of Daniel Radcliffe, who is more Slytherin than Gryffindor here – in exchange for their freedom. 

The theft of said McGuffin is one of the sequels greatest moments, in which the four heroes use their skills with cards to whizz the circuit board around the contained room and away from the people guarding it. Of course, it’s a sequence that’s drenched in absurdity, but there’s no denying how entertaining it is. 

That one set-piece sums up exactly why it is that the film works so well. It may be filled with a lot of mumbo-jumbo dialouge about eyes and how they see, but do they really see – dialouge which appears to exist only as an excuse to give Morgan Freeman a voiceover – and yes, the trickery that the magicians perform stretches the imagination to breaking point; however, there is still a lot of enjoyment to be had with the far-fetched fun that the film has to offer. 

Now You See Me 2 might not be as clever as it thinks it is, but the silly is pitched just right to the point where it doesn’t need to be. Director Jon M. Chu injects some visual style into proceedings, and the cast are all excellent with Woody Harrelson stealing the show with his dual performances as twin brothers. More importantly, everybody involved seems to be aware of the film’s ridiculousness. It’s not quite magical, but it is one of the better sequels we’ve seen so far this summer. 

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