“The closer you look, the less you see”: the essence of the film Now You See Me. Plot Analysis, Meaning of the film, explanation of the ending, similar films.
Country: USA, France
Genre: crime, thriller, detective
Year of production: 2013
Directed by: Louis Leterrier
Actors: Jesse Eisenberg, Mark Ruffalo, Morgan Freeman, Woody Harrelson
tagline: “The closer you are, the less you see”
From time immemorial, people deceive and deceive themselves. But some people have always been able to deftly make money on this pattern. Magicians, illusionists masterfully make a show, and we, knowing that instead of an ace up their sleeve, they have ordinary tinsel, we still continue to go to these performances.
The plot and meaning of the film “Now You See Me” cannot be called original – in places the picture of Louis Leterrier echoes The Prestige and Ocean’s Eleven. But the picture attracts not so much with the boldness of ideas as with interesting allusions.
What is the movie about
A brief description of the content of the film Now You See Me. A mysterious employer assembles a team of gifted illusionists – Daniel, Henley, Merritt and Jack. To each of them he tosses a tarot card. A little later, they gather at the headquarters and get acquainted with the drawings of a unique scam.
Isla Fisher as Henley Reeves, Jesse Eisenberg as Daniel, Woody Harrelson as Merritt, Dave Franco as Jack. Frame from the film.
Calling themselves Horsemen, they, sponsored by millionaire Tressler, come to Las Vegas and put on a show. In the course of the show, they rob a well-known rich man in front of the audience and distribute money to everyone present through the air duct.
The authorities will learn about the daring and beautiful robbery. FBI agent Rhodes and Interpol officer Drey are assigned to investigate a strange case. They easily find all the Riders and detain them. However, this does not bring the solution of the robbery closer: the agents fail to prove their involvement in the loss of money. A little later, they go to the debunker of illusions Bradley, who himself was a magician in the past. He confirms that the Riders are responsible for the robbery, but refuses to expose them.
After some time, the illusionists arrive in New Orleans and commit another robbery there – this time, their patron Tressler suffered from the Riders. Outraged by the trick of the magicians, he hires Bradley and asks him to expose all their illusions.
Meanwhile, government agents learn of the existence of a secret organization called the Eye, which helps ordinary people with the help of magic tricks.
Rhodes and Dray continue to pursue the illusionists, but they are constantly one step ahead. Helping them, Bradley wonders why they succeed, because magicians are not magicians … He cannot guess that the answer to this question lies on the surface.
Ending explanation Now You See Me
The riders will perform at their last show. Government agents and Bradley follow on their heels, but once again fail to prevent the robbery. The magicians make a beautiful escape, and Bradley, returning to the car, sees to his amazement that the money stolen by the illusionists is in it.
He is arrested and sent to prison. Toward the end, Rhodes comes to his cell and he, hoping at least for mitigation of punishment, reveals to him the meaning of the last trick. But he still cannot understand how the illusionists managed to evade the persecution of the authorities every time. Suddenly it dawns on him: someone helped them all the time!
“Quite right,” Rhodes nods, “it is.” Suddenly, he finds himself outside the cell, and a shocked Bradley realizes that the government agent is the same person who hired the illusionists. Moreover, he is the Horseman himself …
Meanwhile, the rest of the Riders gather in the park and take out tarot cards that they once received from a mysterious employer. Having folded all the cards, they receive the “Eye” symbol, and a little later Rhodes joins them and initiates their initiation into the organization. In the finale, he meets with Agent Dray, who by this point had already guessed who she was dealing with.
The explanation for the ending is simple: Rhodes was the son of an illusionist who died while performing a trick. All robberies came down to one thing – to punish everyone who was somehow involved in the death of his father. Agent Dray, sympathetic to her colleague, decides not to reveal his secret.
Probably, the meaning of the ending of the film Now You See Me is that the secret should remain a secret: no need to expose tricks and interfere in the affairs of secret organizations.
Frame from the film.
Eye and riders – what does it mean
Now You See Me is a light “summer” blockbuster filmed by a director whose work has always been aimed at the masses. But some viewers in their analysis of the picture saw an ominous hidden meaning there. They were frightened by Tarot cards and “Masonic” symbols.
According to the interpretation of supporters of various conspiracy theories, the “Eye” is nothing more than the all-seeing eye of the great architect of the universe, the Masonic “deity”. Horsemen are Masonic recruits that were used blindly. And the meaning of all that is happening is the enslavement of mankind through the financial and credit system: all the victims in the film were somehow connected with the banking sector.
Some believe that the “Eye” is an allusion to the radiant delta, the ancient Egyptian eye of Horus. According to conspiracy theorists, this symbol used by the Illuminati is indicative of an occult rule based on gnostic and kabbalistic principles. In a word, “they surround us”, which was demonstrated in Now You See Me.
The meaning of the film Now You See Me
But seriously. This title conveys the essence of the film much better. However, there is a sense in the translation: it lies in the fact that the deception, it seems, is not real – that is, it does not exist at all.
One of the key phrases of the picture sounds like this: “The more carefully you look, the less you see.” The illusionist, using false human attitudes, simply skillfully hides the sides that reveal his focus. That is, we are not talking about deception, but about the inability of the townsfolk to see it. The title “Now You See Me” seems to offer a broader view of the issue and focuses on the very power of the magician over the viewer.
Mark Ruffalo as Dylan Rhodes, Michael Kelly as Agent Fuller. Frame from the film.
According to ancient superstition, a person who uses a doll to harm another threatens to turn him against himself. The world of a child is filled with happiness and joy. The older a person is, the more cynical his awareness of the surrounding reality becomes. Gradually, he understands: everything has its price. Life sometimes exposes a huge bill that is difficult to pay. Conditional “good” can have pood fists and so heap on conditional “evil” that the whole world will tremble and will bleed for a long time to come.
Now You See Me is a focus film. While the four illusionists occupy the audience on both sides of the screen, playing childish games, their employer is preparing to enter the stage. And we are talking about a full-fledged ethical dilemma in the finale. What is allowed to a person, and what can he not do without affecting the basic rules of human coexistence on this planet?
And, throwing off the charm of bright shots, it is impossible not to think: for what and for whom was all this? Did the invisible puppeteer have the right to manipulate the four magicians for their own purposes. And were his personal aspirations worth it?
The picture has another side. Its charm is that, revealing (conditionally) all the secrets, the director leaves a loophole for true magic. The antagonists in this story are not ill-fated illusionists or agents, but those who cannot believe in a real miracle.
The riders are pursued by a former illusionist who reveals the essence of all their antics. And it is he, according to the mythology and aesthetics of the picture, that represents the local quintessence of evil. He really masterfully exposes tricks, although his eyes remain closed – after all, a real illusionist is always nearby …
The figure is almost fantastic and its secrets should not be encroached upon. Everything he does is magic, opening the door to a parallel world, into which, more unconsciously than consciously, the main characters moved.
The bottom line is this: the closer you look at the details, the more remote and monumental majestic seems to be what you look at. But this is the whole trick: the more secrets are revealed from the screen, the more you want to see new illusions. And the main illusion of film deception is that connoisseurs of good stories are always “happy to be deceived themselves.” “Now you see me”?
Morgan Freeman played the role of Thaddeus Bradley, Jessica Lindsey as Hermia, Melanie Laurent as Alma Dray. Frame from the film.
Here are a few pictures similar in meaning to Now You See Me:
- The Prestige (UK, USA, 2006). Illusionists Robert and Alfred have always been friends. But one unfortunate trick turned them into mortal enemies;
- The Illusionist (USA, Czech Republic, 2005). An eminent illusionist falls in love with the bride of the crown prince. This leads to strange and eerie consequences;
- Ocean’s Eleven (USA, 2001). Daring thief Danny Ocean plans to pull off the heist of the century. To do this, he gathers a team of the most talented “specialists”.