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September 30, 2012 7:27 AM   Subscribe


 
The details matter. Outside, the small crowd's complete non-reaction at 3:14 ruined the effect.
posted by davebush at 7:40 AM on September 30, 2012


I don't get what you mean. Those outside who caught what happened seemed confused/surprised. It happened really quickly. What else would you expect?
posted by hermitosis at 7:58 AM on September 30, 2012


I would expect the camera to show the floor, where he was pulled across on the longboard.
posted by weapons-grade pandemonium at 8:02 AM on September 30, 2012


Illusion, Michael.
posted by illovich at 8:11 AM on September 30, 2012 [8 favorites]


Fun to watch! Thanks for sharing.
posted by bwilms at 8:16 AM on September 30, 2012


Those outside who caught what happened seemed confused/surprised.

Did we watch the same video?
posted by davebush at 8:42 AM on September 30, 2012 [1 favorite]


OK, the river and the jacket I can begin to understand. But how did the phone get inside the bottle?
posted by maryr at 8:48 AM on September 30, 2012


Simplest method is.... awww that would be telling.
posted by sammyo at 8:56 AM on September 30, 2012 [1 favorite]


Well, the easiest way is to cut off the bottom, then slip the phone inside the bottle and glue the bottom back on.
posted by daniel_charms at 9:05 AM on September 30, 2012


I'm not sure I agree that this is "real good", inasmuch as nothing really is.
posted by thanotopsis at 9:10 AM on September 30, 2012


Welcome to life in a post-good America. Or Britain, as the case may be.
posted by hermitosis at 9:32 AM on September 30, 2012 [2 favorites]


Well-filmed 'street' magic sets off alarm bells in my head like nothing else. If he has a budget to film and edit these performances, he's definitely got the budget to fake them - what's to say he didn't have underwater platforms in the first trick, or a store window rigged to slide upwards in the second trick, or a duplicate cell phone already placed in a bottle in the third trick?
posted by LSK at 9:35 AM on September 30, 2012


The FPP links to safeshare.tv rather than to youtube directly; reviewing their FAQ leaves me pretty unconvinced that this indirection has any value for Metafilter.

Anyway, here's the Youtube source (so you can use our inline player, for example).
posted by stebulus at 9:39 AM on September 30, 2012 [5 favorites]


Thanks for clearing that up, LSK!
posted by You Should See the Other Guy at 9:39 AM on September 30, 2012 [2 favorites]


"what's to say he didn't have underwater platforms in the first trick, or a store window rigged to slide upwards in the second trick, or a duplicate cell phone already placed in a bottle in the third trick?
posted by LSK "


You mean, what's to say it's a magic trick?
posted by pt68 at 9:40 AM on September 30, 2012 [7 favorites]


It wasn't a trick.
Really, it was magical.
Magical, all the way down.
posted by mule98J at 9:43 AM on September 30, 2012


a duplicate cell phone already placed in a bottle in the third trick?

I thought the cell phone owner's friend called the phone in the bottle. Maybe they were both plants, though.
posted by carter at 9:54 AM on September 30, 2012


Well-filmed 'street' magic sets off alarm bells in my head like nothing else. If he has a budget to film and edit these performances, he's definitely got the budget to fake them - what's to say he didn't have underwater platforms in the first trick, or a store window rigged to slide upwards in the second trick, or a duplicate cell phone already placed in a bottle in the third trick?

Well. Of course he had platforms in the first one. I figured he also hired the kayakers to come by and skim over them to help sell the "fact" there weren't platforms by pretending they didn't feel going over them with the shallow bottomed boats. Kayacks have almost no bottom.

The second trick is harder to figure out because there are, literally, dozens of ways it could have been done, mostly with trapdoors or specialty windows. It's pretty obvious that the two guys holding the coat are confederates.

The last trick is probably my favorite of the bunch, because I don't think it requires any confederate to help sell it. My guess is he has a fake bottle made to look like the beer bottle and then waited for someone with that brand of beer to agree to do the trick. Once he gets the phone you'll see his hand with the beer bottle goes out of frame. I'm thinking he's switching the real bottle for the fake bottle (bottomless with a piece with some sort of quick adhesive he can plug it up with) at that point. Then during the flurry of movement with the fake bottle and phone in his hand he pushed the phone through the hole in the fake bottle and pushed in the plug. Ta-da!

Honestly, it's only the first trick that makes me go "bleah", other than that pretty nice.
posted by bswinburn at 9:59 AM on September 30, 2012 [1 favorite]


He definitely has a confederate in the third one. The guy standing just behind him and to his right. The magician takes the bottle that the guy empties and palms it to the guy behind him, getting a different bottle. Watch the confederate's hands.
posted by nushustu at 10:02 AM on September 30, 2012 [5 favorites]


Well-filmed 'street' magic sets off alarm bells in my head like nothing else. If he has a budget to film and edit these performances, he's definitely got the budget to fake them

Do you mean 'fake' as in 'not real magic'? I'm kind of the opposite. Alarm bells would go off like crazy in my head if I suspected it was not some budgeted, planned out trick, and might be actual real magic.

And if you look very carefully, there's no reason for any sliding glass window.
posted by eye of newt at 10:02 AM on September 30, 2012 [1 favorite]


For the second trick, I was just thinking that the people outside were also confederates, too. The magician crouches down, and is whisked away to the right, hidden by the long coat. Another man, dressed to look like the magician from the behind, stands up from beyond the window and walks away.
posted by tickingclock at 10:04 AM on September 30, 2012


The window trick had a confederate standing next to the blonde guy facing the other direction, his body blocked the line of sight so he could slip out of view.
posted by stbalbach at 10:04 AM on September 30, 2012


The phone in the bottle trick: man in glasses behind magician is the stooge, watch for the swap of empty bottle for bottle with identical phone in magicians left hand. Real mobile phone thrown inside large internal pocket in magicians coat as hands are clapped together, notice how he leans forward to enable this. Bottle with replica phone inside displayed. Friend asked to call it to prove its his and replica phone is simply called by someone else at same time.
posted by veryape at 10:05 AM on September 30, 2012


I think these are all Chris Angel-style tricks where literally everyone in the shot is a confederate. It's just staged as "street magic", it's actually YouTube or TV magic and the on the street people are just part of the trick. So the guy who gives his phone to be put in a bottle, the guys holding his coat, the people reacting to him walking on water, they are all confederates.
posted by burnmp3s at 10:20 AM on September 30, 2012


So, a Priest, a Nun, and a Rabbi got together for a picnic. They found a nice spot next to a pond with a small island. When they arrived they realized that the only picnic table was on the island. No boat, the water too deep to wade, and none of them could swim.

They discussed options, it was too late to find another spot. Then the Priest looked out on the pond and stepped out and walked across to the island. The Nun said a short prayer and walked across the water as well and joined him on the island.

The Rabbi, a rather proud man, knew he couldn't allow them to cross based on the Jesus trick while he stayed behind. He approached the pond as the Priest and the Nun watched. Prayed for a moment, and stepped off the shore, and quickly went down in 6 feet of water.

The Nun looked at the Priest and said "Should we tell him where the rocks are?"

I'll be here all week.
posted by HuronBob at 10:21 AM on September 30, 2012 [2 favorites]


For the first one, I figured he had a diver or two under him holding and moving a pair of poles - Notice how as he goes out, the water comes up higher over his legs? If he had previously installed a platform, it would make more sense to have leveled it.

For the second trick, aside from the crowd reactions, notice you can't see a clear path to the floor on the right of the coat. He crouched down, scooted out the door and around in front of the window, where he stood up again. I have to suspect that for that one, he had everyone present involved, as burnmp3s suggests.

For the third one... I'd say at least two accomplices. nushustu nailed one of them, for the swap of bottles; I'd also say the one in the foreground right, who called the phone in the bottle - I'd guess he had swiped his friend's actual phone for a dummy some time earlier, giving the magician time to somehow get it in the bottle... Though of course, I can't rule out all of them as in on it, in which case we don't have much of a trick beyond the mechanics of how you get a cell-phone in a glass bottle.

If I saw these live, though, I'd probably feel pretty impressed. Recorded like this, I guess I just have too much of a skeptical world-view to not suspect a whole slew of accomplices (and I wouldn't even rule out simple editing trickery, though I honestly don't see the need for it).
posted by pla at 10:26 AM on September 30, 2012


Magic or not, I just enjoyed watching it ^_^ Thanks for sharing!
posted by LittleNami at 10:46 AM on September 30, 2012 [4 favorites]


To me this isn't magic at all. This is crap.

THIS is magic.
posted by ReeMonster at 11:12 AM on September 30, 2012 [22 favorites]


You can clearly see the bottle is cut open and not the same one when he shoves it against the phone.

Also, yeah, I was offput by the walking on water trick too.
posted by Malice at 11:32 AM on September 30, 2012


Entertaining videos. I'd hate to perform illusions for a MeFi crowd!
posted by arcticseal at 11:38 AM on September 30, 2012 [2 favorites]


All these so-called street magicians seed the crowds _heavily_. Most of the "random" interactions are with co-actors. Not to mention how cleverly the video is made to look "found" or "caught" but are actually carefully constructed.
posted by clvrmnky at 12:15 PM on September 30, 2012


I love magic tricks a lot. But I guess camera tricks and actor plants aren't in the same category as magic for me, just like I wouldn't consider CGI to be magic or the movie "The Lion King" to be a magic show. (As far as I know lions don't have opposable digits and they can barely speak English at all.)
posted by Algebra at 12:50 PM on September 30, 2012 [2 favorites]


"I’m writing a book on magic," I explain, and I'm asked, "Real magic?" By real magic people mean miracles, thaumaturgical acts, and supernatural powers. "No," I answer: "Conjuring tricks, not real magic." Real magic, in other words, refers to the magic that is not real, while the magic that is real, that can actually be done, is not real magic.

- Lee Siegel, "Net of Magic"
posted by oliverburkeman at 12:54 PM on September 30, 2012 [6 favorites]


Entertaining videos. I'd hate to perform illusions for a MeFi crowd!

Teller is welcome at Mefi anytime.
posted by Malice at 2:05 PM on September 30, 2012


The "coincidental" kayaks were a really nice touch.
posted by erniepan at 3:13 PM on September 30, 2012 [1 favorite]


Waste of a MeFi post in my opinion. I came to view some very clever illusions and all we get are camera tricks and "random" people.

1) a guy walking on a plank in water
2) a guy crouching down and crawling around the window and then standing up
3) a guy switching out the bottle when his hand drops from the screen.

his sleight of hand is good, but I would have preferred something besides street magic
posted by zombieApoc at 3:13 PM on September 30, 2012


Remember when David Blaine used to do street magic instead of bizarre survival stints. He was amazing. I still don't know how he did the coffee-into-coins trick.
posted by rabbitrabbit at 3:47 PM on September 30, 2012


stints. = stunts?
posted by rabbitrabbit at 3:47 PM on September 30, 2012


How long have these phony street magicians been doing this kind of thing? It seems like a quarter century ... a quarter of a century! I know they were a response to '80s style sleazy glitz, and Penn & Teller were also a response to that, and .... eh, I just want to see someone in a well-tailored suit make a busload of demons get sucked up by a tornado, for real. Is that so much to ask? Also how about a famous female magician? Maybe a female would have the dignity to show up for work in something other than a hoodie and blue jeans.
posted by kenlayne at 5:19 PM on September 30, 2012 [1 favorite]


Phone/bottle trick - watch the accomplice in glasses. His right hand is empty as the sequence begins, then it's magically holding a Corona bottle, which he clumsily attempts to hide after the effect.
posted by davebush at 5:45 PM on September 30, 2012


He's doing it again. He knows we're watching him, and that we'd find this. What now? Take him out?

Ri-ight - laws, paperwork and who could we find to sub for him with such short notice?

It's why he does it - he knows we can't get him in time and swap him out before anyone sees.

The Monthly report sees, though. Christ, he's just rubbing this in our faces.

Look, you wanna go back there and take over for him? Hello, it's 2012. Fall of 2012 I might add. You know, before the Big One hits in January? You want to be the one to explain this to Central?

Not really, no. Let's just hope he comes off like some sort of magic act or something. I need a drink.
posted by Lipstick Thespian at 6:20 PM on September 30, 2012 [1 favorite]


I still don't know how he did the coffee-into-coins trick.

Why is that hard to figure out? The coins are there, he just pushes them up through to coffee or drains the coffee.
posted by empath at 7:38 PM on September 30, 2012


Yes, well, I feel an apology might be good....

Myth Busters busted the walk on water trick, for example...
.
hey, I liked it...I got taken in! I appreciate all the razor laser prajna....(look it up.)
posted by eggtooth at 9:31 PM on September 30, 2012


Derren Brown manages to be impressive both initially by his utterly mystifying 'magic' and then by his consumate skill when he explains how it's done (I cannot find anything now! Not a big suprise I suppose, but this, though dry, is quite good).
posted by BadMiker at 7:34 AM on October 1, 2012


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