Magician Reviews Sleight of Hand and Visual Tricks In Movies & TV (Part Two) | Vanity Fair

uh this no no no no this is not for Cheating at cards this is uh this is from my physical therapist is anyone buying this my name is Ben Sidman I’m a magician pickpocket and slate of hand artist this is my second Vanity Fair Video breaking down magic and slate of hand in film and TV but people have a lot of questions so today all will be revealed let’s get into it the wonderful story of Henry sugar slowly magically but distinctly a black blob becomes a spade a twisty squiggle becomes a five the F of

Spades fingers quivering he picks up the card and turns it over I’ve done it he says I love this story and I love that R doll based the character off a real person Cuda bucks the man with x-ray eyes in this great movie Benedict cumberbatch’s character learns a skill which allows him to do this effect without trickery if you’re going to fake this effect the easiest way to do it would be with a gambler’s deck of marked cards think of it as a deck of cards that’s face up and face down at the same time

marked cards were developed to cheat at card games but magicians tend to avoid them and here’s why one if you get

caught you lose all your credibility two sometimes someone hands me a dock of cards and asks to see magic and I can’t just be like oh yeah I’d love to do a magic trick for you let me just use my special deck of cards instead and three a really good magician could take any trick that they would do with a mark deck of cards and do it with a a normal deck of cards so

it’s just not worth the hassle for any of us oh and why else do we not use Mark cards people know about them the back of the next card to be dealt lay clearly visible the dealer hadn’t touched it yes Henry said another card the dealer Shrugged and dealt it the two of clubs landed neatly in front of Henry alongside the 10 and the nine1 the dealer said evenly his black eyes glanced up again into Henry’s face and rested there silent watchful there are different types of card marking that have existed in the world of

gambling first there’s dob DB is a chemical or kind of oily substance that you put a little on your thumb and as you’re playing you can mark the back of certain cards there are also printed gimmick decks where you shift your depth of focus to read the marks like a Magic Eye poster this is what one of those decks looks like if I shift my depth of focus I can see some of the marking system this is a card puncher uh gambling cheats can use this to punch little divots in cards so like brao they

can feel specific playing cards as they’re playing and identify them and if you see someone playing cards wearing a green visor that could be allowing them to see a mark on one of the cards that is otherwise invisible to the naked eye cards can also be naturally marked due to anomalies in the printing process Phil Ivy famously took advantage of an observed error within the printing and used them for a process known as Edge sorting keeping track of high and low cards in most cases looking back I have to say I love Benedict’s commitment to

what the superpower would actually look like and I think Wes Anderson was the perfect director to give this story Justice The Prestige indeed many of you may be familiar with this technique but for those of you who aren’t to not be alarmed what you’re about to see is considered safe in this movie the trick is called the transported man it’s a translocation effect which is one of my favorite plots in magic magic is both an art and a science one of my mentors armanda lucier was once performing a translocation effect with a coin and two

cards he would place the cards on the table put the coin underneath one of the cards and it would travel to underneath the other card after he performed it a man in the audience stepped forward and asked if he could sign his name on the coin by signing his name on the coin the man was confirming for himself that there was only one coin being used because he would be able to verify his own signature signing the coin closes a door very deliberately now as far as I’m concerned that’s pretty close to a perfect Miracle

but the man who had signed his name on the coin said oh now I know how it doesn’t work for that man proving that there was only one coin being used was the Tipping Point and the feeling of Wonder had decreased instead of increased as always kudos to Christopher Nolan and deceptive practices the Magic in this film is is topnotch shade one of The Producers said to me hey that thing on Stallone’s arm that isn’t real is it they made that for the movie nope that absolutely is a real thing it’s called a keplinger using

one of these in a game is known as playing The Joint these were actually used by cricked gamblers back in the day but the klinker it became Antiquated shortly after its invention why if you get caught with one of these things in a poker game that’s a death sentence it would be very difficult to explain your way out of this oh this yeah uh this no no no no this is not for Cheating at cards this is uh this is from my physical therapist is anyone buying this but the engineering is really cool and there

are certainly card sheets who have used these things and devices like it when it comes to switching cards in and out of play I should also mention that this is is worn under a jacket you don’t just walk into the card game like hey guys who wants to play a friendly game games of chance not the way we play seconds centers bottoms stacking the deck mucking cards in the first few frames of that clip we saw expert at the card table which is a book from 1902 that teaches anything and everything cheating at cards interestingly

enough the author of this book has remained a mystery for over a century but it has plenty of switching techniques designed for the cheat now gamblers and magicians switch cards in very different ways but there’s a huge similarity both need to appear natural but within the context of the situation when I’m performing I create my own context which gives me so much more leeway than someone cheating at cards a gambler for example would never switch cards like this no if you want to risk your life cheating at cards you would need a method that fits

within the natural movements of gameplay this is a deep deep rabbit hole but I find it frustrating because I keep trying to get a card game going and no one returns my calls Focus knows how to treat a lady married this movie is a great example of producers listening to experts and actors actually putting in the work but let’s back up the reason why the pickpocketing in this movie is so epic and so realistic it’s Apollo robins and avido this film is really personal to me because a lot of the pickpocketing that I perform on

stage comes from studying with Apollo let’s start with the language here Shade that’s covering the steel and bling the eyeline of onlookers and the mark the stick holds the mark in position Fanning means to touch the mark looking for the poke a poke is the wallet or item of value that is being targeted for the steel a pratt poke Pratt is an old timey British term in this case it’s referring to a wallet in the back pocket I’m going to break down the steals in the scene But please understand this is not a tutorial do

not attempt to use any of these techniques doing so may result in your a getting thrown in jail B getting punched in the face C getting thrown in jail and punched in the face or d a career in the Arts let’s start with the lens lift she acts as both the stick and the shade for the lens lift this is very good realistic blocking then he asks her if if she want wants to wire you want to wire let me wire wire is another term for the tool the dip the mechanic who’s ever doing the

steel next is the Pratt poke the Mark is bumped and she does the extraction notice that she’s stealing from someone wearing loose fitting jeans when I bring someone up on stage during my show to steal from I’m always looking at the cut of their clothing one of the reasons that these types of Steels have become more rare is that pants have gotten skinnier and skinnier over the years which makes pants Pockets very tight and difficult to steal from the truth is steal feeling from a guy wearing skinny jeans is hard because it’s easier for him

to feel it so baggy pants are always better I think pickpocketing had its Heyday in the 9s sorry MC Hammer you can actually touch a lot of things in those pants next the steel out of the purse with the Chopsticks this is actually real you can find Surveillance footage from some countries where Pick Pockets use chopsticks unlike some other tools which can Aid in the extraction Chopsticks can’t be prosecuted as a burglary tool so I totally buy this the hip pack steel is actually one of my favorites in the entire movie it’s 100% real 100%

believable and we get to see Ava do make a cameo in pickpocket terms there’s often someone who takes the stolen goods out of sight that way if the steel is spotted by anyone there’s no proof because the stolen goods were passed off the term for the person who leaves with the goods is the Duke man here we see Ava working as the Duke man that watch was way too fast but I’m guessing that Margo Robbie learned the steel for real and then the speed was due to a camera cut not the choreography knows how to

treat a lady married there’s another Pratt poke with some flare and we see him catch the wallet and drop it into his hat that is of course Apollo Robbins on camera oh this is a double steal she’s working his leather and his ring at the same time that moment is definitely enhanced for dramatic effect you would never see a wire steal both of those things at the same time but they’re using this moment to tell the story of Margo’s character growing in confidence and in speed finally let’s talk about eye contact a thief on the

street never wants to make eye contact with their Mark if they get caught they could be identified later that being said I think if most people were grabbed by Margo Robbie they would remember it there’s a term for accidentally making ey contact with your Mark it’s known as kissing the dog when I steal things from people it it happens on stage during my show so I don’t need to avoid eye contact so for me this is kissing the dog that’s Juno she’s my everything Arrested Development enjoy the Hanukkah cookie man arrested is one of my

all-time favorite shows but any magic we see is intentionally the worst version of that trick could Ben still have learned to do something that was truly impossible of course he could have he’s super talented but it’s not the right choice for the character pulling something out of your eye badly definitely is the funny choice if I was going to pull a Hanukkah cookie out of my eye it might look something like this that’s actually uh that’s actually a non-religiously Affiliated winter cookie it’s a glutenfree secular treat I think you should leave with Tim Robinson all

right Charlie I just want you you to focus on which hand the ball is in and I’ll give you a hint it’s not this one right here God damn it Charlie had one job I’ll give you one last chance which hand is it in a re no Charlie it’s in your pocket give him a round of applause it’s Charlie Jerry Seinfeld once said all magic is here’s a quarter now it’s gone you’re a jerk now it’s back you’re an idiot shows over Jerry you’re wrong that’s not all magic that’s just bad magic people in film

and TV love to represent magicians as clueless and I have a theory about this I think that this is the fault of another Trope from the80s during that time period magic took the same turn as stand-up comedy in the 80s tons of comedy clubs opened and there was so much money to be made so you had a lot of hacky performers it’s pretty clear that this sequence was written by a non-m magician and the actor who played the magician shout out to Jerry katsman had to match the choreography to whatever was in the script most

of the sequence is intentionally simple and there or condescending if the effect in execution was more sophisticated The Narrative just isn’t as good so how would this look if it was a bit more like a traditional magic routine Lily Lisa do you know what this is trick question no one does it’s a ball for your nose well yeah that’s it looks like a a clown nose it’s a just a ball of it’s a ball of sponge but uh you can create sort of an an optical illusion so it looks like there’s uh there’s more than

one if you put your finger on it does that make sense no yeah if you hold hold your finger down here I’ll I’ll show you if you do this with your finger oh wow it definitely looks like there’s two Lisa do me a favor uh hold one of your hands out for me yeah I want you to hold on to the ball but tightly and then if you watch this one and look I’ll even roll up my sleeves so you don’t think I’m cheating look okay and The Crowd Goes Wild Lily would you hold that

one of your hands for me beautiful hold on to both of them but really tightly like really tightly put your other hand on top beautiful okay turn your hand over and open them that’s the desired response is right there I’ve spoken before about how magicians actively try to cancel out an audience as possible the as they go there’s an old adage that magicians hide things in their sleeves so often we roll up our sleeves to disprove that I think it’s fine performing spongeball magic in long sleeves because the audience realizes that an object like this

would get caught going up the sleeve so there are many other methods that have been devised to do a vanish besides magicians don’t really use their sleeves that’s a bit of a myth another misnomer the hand is quicker than the eye it’s almost never speed unless the magician is unspeeded I did say that the this character was inspired by the80s God damn it Charlie the notion that it’s up his sleeve the hand is quicker than the eye I think these bits of misinformation were created by magicians who wanted to steer your thinking away from how

the trick actually worked the hand is quicker than the eye was always a straw man just waiting to be torn down because now I can move slowly and fool you on a deeper level it’s just like that sign beware of pickpockets when you see that sign you pat yourself down and the pickpocket who hung up that sign sees where you put your valuables these ideas were printed posted and repeated by people who want you to believe something that is completely false it’s all part of the deception as far as I’m concerned more Magic on screen

the more magic we see the better I hope this video gave you a deeper look at the world of mystery that I get to live in every day thank you for watching

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