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      ON-LINE MAGIC REVIEWS


 Good
Magic Tricks

 

 

I consider these magic products worthwhile, but with some limitations: you may want to investigate further on the matter before purchasing them and insulting me afterwards.

 

Featuring (most recent on top):

HN Magic Review 112: Fickle Nickel – John Cornelius/ Ronnie Gann

HN Magic Review 108: Killer Konceptions – Kenton Knepper

HN Magic Review 107: Kolossal Killer – Kenton Knepper

HN Magic Review 106: Visual Impossible Penetration (VIP) - Mike Powers

HN Magic Review 100: Mini Rabbit From Hat - Dick Barry

HN Magic Review 99: Holey Terror II – Mike Powers

HN Magic Review 98: Peek Encores – Richard Busch

HN Magic Review 92: The Stock holder – Gregory Wilson

HN Magic Review 89: The Cantrip Codex: a Guide for the Advanced Enigmatist - Tony Doc Shiels

HN Magic Review 87: Fortune and Fate – Anthony Lindan

HN Magic Review 84: Linking Life Savers / Linking Polo Mints – Colin Gilbert

HN Magic Review 69: Paper Balls over the Head DVD / videotape – Tony Clark

HN Magic Review 68: Mobile Mentalism - Mark Strivings

HN Magic Review 66: Boomerang Rubber Band – Chris Kenner/Dan Garrett

HN Magic Review 64: Psychokinetic Pen (PK Pen) - Banachek

HN Magic Review 63: Celebration of sides DVD / videotape – Robert Neale

HN Magic Review 61: Psychokinetic Touches (PK Touches) - Banachek

HN Magic Review 60: Wonder Pen-a-tration – Doug Edwards

HN Magic Review 38: Magic with rubber bands DVD / videotape Volume 1, 2 and 3 – Dan Harlan

HN Magic Review 37: Psychokinetic Silverware DVD / videotape – Banachek/Gerry Mc Cambridge

HN Magic Review 36: Easy to Master Money Miracles DVD / videotape Volume 1, 2 and 3 – Michael Ammar

HN Magic Review 35: Psychokinetic Time – Banachek

HN Magic Review 30: Jump! – John Kennedy

HN Magic Review 21: An Enchanted Evening – Kenton Knepper

HN Magic Review 1: Dynamic Mysteries – Richard Osterlind

 

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HN Magic Review 112: Fickle Nickel – John Cornelius/ Ronnie Gann

 

AD:

 

As SEEN ON Doug HENNING MAGIC SPECIAL

This one you are just not going to believe! And why not? Because most of you saw it performed on one of the Doug Henning specials, and just didn’t believe it then! Why not? Because in its simplicity, and its apparent impossibility, the effect comes closer to real magic than anything you are likely to see, or show to your audiences, for many long months to come. The simple, but absolutely mind-blowing effect is that a nickel held at arms length in one hand, with both sleeves rolled up, disappears completely from that hand, and then without a false move, reappears again. The step-by-step process, with no omissions, is as follows: the magician puts his right hand in his right pants pocket and pulls out a nickel, which he shows to the audience, as his left hand firmly holds the bare right wrist, keeping it steady so that the coin may be carefully noted by the spectators. The right hand then places the nickel in the upturned left palm, following which the left hand is held out towards the left, and the left little finger, ring finger, second finger, forefinger, and thumb, slowly close in turn over the coin. The closed left fist is then turned to show the audience the back of the left - hand.

The left hand, still closed, then moves slowly to the left, and is rotated so the audience may again see the left fingers closed over the palm, after which the fingers are slowly opened wide, in the same sequence that they closed, and the left hand is shown to be completely empty. Next, the left hand, with the fingers spread wide apart, is slowly turned so that the audience may see the absolutely empty back of the left hand.

Then, to make sure that the audience has had every chance to observe the hand carefully from both sides, the empty palm, and the empty back of the hand are again shown in turn to the spectators. The fingers of the left hand are then closed; the closed left palm shown carefully to the audience, and the hand is slowly opened to show that the coin has mysteriously returned to the palm. The coin is allowed to drop to the left fingertips, which grasp it, and toss it into the right hand, which returns it to the right pants pocket.

Elementary in its straightforwardness? You can’t believe it! Undetectable as to what actually happened to the coin? Yes. You know how unblinking the television camera is as it stares at the hand, bathed in brilliant studio light. Necessary to rehearse the presentation a bit? Of course. But if you want a miracle, here you have it. No one truly interested in brilliant magical concepts should be without this one. And you can do it!

 

 

REVIEW:

 

A good coin trick: even if the angles are quite restrictive and the coin must be very small, it is a very visual effect in the right conditions, and technically easy to perform.

 

Still, do NOT purchase it: the effect is described in much more details in Michael Ammar’s “Classic Renditions Vol. 2” video/DVD, along with a live performance by John Cornelius himself and 3 classic rubber bands tricks.

 

You don’t need to buy the gimmicked coin (by the way you may already have it!), because the ingenious method works with real coins (any currency) if they are small enough.

 

OVERALL RATING: Good

 

HN

 

Read/post comments: http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/viewtopic.php?topic=102130&forum=109&26&start=0#25

 

HN Magic Review 108: Killer Konceptions – Kenton Knepper

 

AD:

 

How could anyone improve on the Original Kolossal Killer manuscript? Kenton has!

This manuscript contains what Kenton believes to be to the most impressive and entertaining versions of Kolossal Killer ever! Here you will find versions that outdo the original! These methods include ways to do Killer without using a wallet, methods that allow you to hand the spectators the wallet, gaffs so the wallet would be truly empty, and much more.

There are even ideas from the late Doug Henning that Kenton couldn't keep to himself, as well as contributions from many others.

 

REVIEW:

 

For once, a sequel with the same quality level of the original book. Contents include some variations of the original Kolossal Killer - notably one with business cards instead of playing cards - and a few mental card forces (one of them was already described in Docc Hilford’s Real Mind Reading video).

 

You will need the Original Kolossal Killer to perform the effects (except one off-topic bonus trick at the end of the book), because Killer Konceptions starts where the previous volume stopped, and the basic method is not explained.

 

OVERALL RATING: good

 

HN

 

Read/post comments:

http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/viewtopic.php?topic=187122&forum=15

 

 

 

 

HN Magic Review 107: Kolossal Killer – Kenton Knepper

 

AD:

 

Kolossal Killer has long been one of Kenton's Knepper's favorite creations!



Unfortunately, versions sell for over one hundred dollars. Not any more...What is Kolossal Killer?


Spectators just NAME a playing card, and you have the correct card in your wallet. YOU ARE ALWAYS CORRECT! It is the ultimate card 'out' for Close-up work. A spectator can mess with you all they want - RELAX - you can still produce a playing card from your normal wallet, as absolute proof that you knew their card all along. Kolossal Killer has become a classic piece of mentalism as well - used by such pros as Larry Becker and Jeff McBride. It's a full-blown stage effect, with nothing but the minds of the audience and your everyday billfold.

NO Forces NO Gaffed Wallet NO Sleight of Hand NO 52 Card Index (Not 26 cards either)


. . . Whatever they name, you are right. Simple, direct, awe-inspiring magic and mentalism - the kind you have come to expect from Kenton Knepper.

PLUS With this - Kenton's original version - you can do effects even the expensive gaffed wallet versions simply cannot do. AND you will receive complete routines, right out of Kenton's act. This couldn't be easier or more diabolical. Only a very select few have been privy to Kenton's original version of Killer - until now. THIS IS YOUR CHANCE. Get the complete original work with all the devious touches in this manuscript (just add your own billfold and cards). Forever more you will have a truly groundbreaking reputation maker, not 'up your sleeve', but in your own wallet.

 

REVIEW:

 

I don’t know about you, but I am becoming allergic to the Wonder Wizards hypes…

 

The prepared wallet is not examinable, and this could be a problem for magicians. The impact can be strong, although I suggest you do not use Kolossal Killer as an effect in itself, but as an out for “thought-of cards” routines – in fact, the booklet includes the excellent effect “Truly Invisible”, already published in the accompanying notes of Wonder Words vol. 2.

 

The manuscript is very thin and should have included the ideas described in the sequel (Killer Konceptions), which takes the basic effect to new heights. But I guess that 2 booklets sell more than 1 book.

 

OVERALL RATING: good

 

HN

 

Read/post comments:

http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/viewtopic.php?topic=27938&forum=2

 

 

HN Magic Review 106: Visual Impossible Penetration (VIP) - Mike Powers

 

AD:

 

V.I.P. stands for Visual-Impossible-Penetration. This is THE handling for the cap in the bottle. Other methods require that you use a specific type of beer bottle. With V.I.P. virtually any type of bottle can be used and the spectator holds the bottle as you drive though the side of the bottle (see picture). Also, with V.I.P. you not only get that "special something", you also get the V.I.P. took kit, which allows you to set up a bottle in about 2 minutes.

 

You can give the bottle away when you're done because you can set up another in 2 minutes!

 

REVIEW:

 

“Set up a bottle in about 2 minutes” MY A##. The setup is in fact a long and draining process (if you want to leave the bottle to the spectator, and let her closely examine it), but the “prop” provided is simple and functional.

 

The production value of Mr. Power’s booklets is one of the worst I know (folded A4 pages, often stapled in the wrong order – Holey Terror 2 also had the same problem) but the trick is very workable and can have a strong impact in staged close-up situations. Of course it can’t be done “impromptu” at a friend’s home, since you have to use your own prepared bottle (non examinable before the effect).

 

Concerning the moves, the author mentions an alternative method using a well-known gimmick you may already own, which works much better than the technique originally described, and leaves you completely clean at the end.

 

 

OVERALL RATING: good

 

HN

 

Read/post comments:

http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/viewtopic.php?topic=70576&forum=109

 

 

 

HN Magic Review 100: Mini Rabbit From Hat - Dick Barry

AD:

 

A miniature (one inch) top hat is shown completely empty. A spectator reaches inside to prove it is truly empty. The hat is placed open end down on your EMPTY palm. After making a magical gesture the hat is lifted, a small BUNNY RABBIT HAS MAGICALLY APPEARED. EVERYTHING CAN BE EXAMINED. THIS BAFFLES THE BEST OF THEM! The next time someone says, "CAN YOU PULL A RABBIT FROM A HAT?" ANSWER WITH THIS CLOSE-UP MIRACLE.

 

REVIEW:

 

This one uses magic props (a black plastic top hat and a sponge rabbit), and should therefore be banned from my current repertoire. However, it is a cute little quickie that always gets “oooh, aaaah!!” from the ladies (no, not THAT kind of “oooh, aaaah!!”)

 

The props are very well made and the price is right, even though I would have preferred a slightly smaller size for easier concealment.

 

It’s just a simple, innocuous magic trick, but you know the saying: if they applaud, keep it…

 

OVERALL RATING: good

 

HN

 

Read/post comments:

http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/viewtopic.php?topic=71238&forum=109

 

 

 

HN Magic Review 99: Holey Terror II – Mike Powers

AD:

 

Just when you thought it was safe! Holey Terror II -- The sequel. The original created a sensation when it was released a few years ago.

 

The effect is straightforward and powerful.

A card is chosen from a shuffled deck. A hole is punched at each corner of the signed card. Place your thumb over one of the holes and move it to another corner! The spectator feels the holes to make sure they are real (and they are!).

Now, another hole is moved to the same corner! Again the holes are felt to be real. This is WEIRD!

Finally, you visibly move the last hole over with the others, ending with all four holes in the same corner! The spectator feels the holes one last time, then removes the card from the deck.

His signature is still on the face of the card!! You can give him the card as a souvenir.

 

Holy Terror II is a single deck method! Self contained and really easy to do. No pulls, magnets, etc. The card is signed. Comes complete with everything, even the hole punch and special Bicycle cards. Nothing else need ever be purchased, except more cards!

 

REVIEW:

 

This is a F****** card trick – enough said…

 

Still, it gets surprising reactions from the lay audience, and is worth your time and consideration. If you are ready to carry around your deck of playing cards and a regular hole puncher, and perform a series of knuckle busting card moves (AAAARGH!!!)

 

I obviously prefer Michael Close’s Pothole Trick (done with a business card), but if you really have to perform card tricks, this one is recommended.

 

 

OVERALL RATING: may be good for you

 

HN

 

Read/post comments:

http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/viewtopic.php?topic=53832&forum=2

 

 

 

HN Magic Review 98: Peek Encores – Richard Busch

AD:

 

An in-depth treatise on four revolutionary billets and their many adaptations for the mature, modern mentalist who desires state-of-the-art, in-full-view methods of immediate. invisible information acquisition. No switching, no duplicates, no stealing, and no tearing! Ultra-clean, live-time, instantly accessed information ... at your fingertips.
With the help of clear text on 110 big pages (on the best 32 pound laser paper) and a whopping 175 photos, you will enjoy this format! It is very user friendly. For the voyeur in you, Peek Encores is loaded with the sequential, step-by-step information that will update and surpass previous handlings. It is a breakthrough billet bonanza for mentalists who can no longer afford to handle billets like a magician!

What People Are Saying:


"Busch's Billet may well be the best billet peek ever to see print!"
-Doug Dyment


" ... It works like nothing else I've ever tried in billet work. It has been improved beyond belief. All I can say is what so many others have already said ... you're a genius! You're the greatest!"
-Larry Becker


"Just finished reading Richard Busch's newest work, PEEK ENCORES which firmly establishes Mr. Busch as THE authority on the secret gathering of information via the billet peek. I enjoyed the format of PEEK ENCORES, found it well produced, and even easier to understand than its predecessor. Filled with copious photographs, its 110 pages not only make his devious creations easy to follow, but also give you a flavor of Richard the person...a delightful mensch with a love of Mentalism!!!"
-Bruce Bernstein


"Magnificent! Peek Encores is more than just a sequel to Peak Performances. Rather than continuing from where PP left off, Peek Encores explores new territory for the serious Billet worker. There are at least two ideas I put to use immediately, and several others I intend to explore more thoroughly when I have the time. The handlings are well-taught with literally hundreds of photographs and explicit instructions. Good job, Richard; you've done it again!"

-John Riggs


" ... a monument in mentalism literature."

-Liz and Leondo

 

REVIEW:

 

This self-produced, spiral bound book only contains 4 peeks: a great version of Al Mann/Millard Longman’s Acidus Novus, and 3 variations of moves previously described in Peek Performances (Zen, Zorro and Reader’s Billets). All the moves are explained in great details, with plenty of photographs.

 

The first peek, called “Busch’s Billet”, is the cleanest I know (I don’t own Alain Bellon’s Obsidian Oblique, to be honest) and was worth the price of the book to me: it is truly done at the fingertips, and allows the participant to write on half of the billet.

 

The other 3 moves look like fillers: they should have been inserted (in the worst case scenario) in Peek Performances. Seems like an unnecessary way to beef up the book and justify its price.

 

OVERALL RATING: Good (enough now)

 

HN

 

Read/post comments:

http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/viewtopic.php?topic=67135&forum=110

 

 

 

HN Magic Review 92: The Stockholder – Gregory Wilson

AD:

 

Take an old but effective principle, mix in the creative genius of some of the top names in close up and you get Gregory Wilson's THE STOCKHOLDER!

You receive a nicely made small leather wallet which you can use to carry credit cards around in, which on one side has a place for your business cards. The business card side of the wallet is gimmicked to work on the 'Out To Lunch' principle and enables you to create all manner of fun and amazing effects.

The 72 page A5 centre stapled book of routines supplied is very comprehensive. Photo illustrated, it gives the exact handling of the prop plus many routines from people such as Michael Close, Paul Harris, Daryl, Simon Lovell, Michael Webber, Dan Harlan, Jay Sankey, Gregory Wilson and more. The book is also written in a wonderfully funny and entertaining way! You're going to LOVE this!

 

 

REVIEW:

 

The wallet has in-built speakers and a giant yellow label with “MAGIC PROP” written on it. On the other hand, the booklet is full choking of gags and offbeat presentations for the Out To Lunch principle. Surprisingly entertaining, it’s definitely worth reading if you enjoy this method.

 

Buy it, throw away the wallet and continue using your clip or rubber bands.

 

OVERALL RATING: good

 

HN

 

Read/post comments:

http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/viewtopic.php?topic=70821&forum=110

 

 

 

HN Magic Review 89: The Cantrip Codex: a Guide for the Advanced Enigmatist - Tony Doc Shiels



AD:

 
N/A (out of print)

REVIEW:

1989 hardbound production from one of the grandfathers of Bizarre Magick.
 
The book, published by the late Tony Andruzzi, focuses on original presentational aspects instead of actual methods.
It includes a couple of séances, essays on his performance philosophy, effects with a Polaroid camera, tarot cards,
weird artifacts etc . My favorite was a “backward in time” effect with human hairs and bones…
 
After reading this book, many wished they could meet his daughter.
 
OVERALL RATING: good (and even better for the assiduous bizarrists)
 
HN
 
Read/post comments: 
http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/viewtopic.php?topic=60936&forum=14
 
 
 
 

HN Magic Review 87: Fortune and Fate – Anthony Lindan

AD:


A “Con-Fabulous” mental effect using your own business cards. Commercial and entertaining mentalism routine using a game show (i.e., quiz show) format, making for lots of great audience participation! Works equally well for table workers, or as a feature routine in a parlor act. Anthony Lindan gives us 10 solid minutes of strong psychic entertainment that can be easily worked out of your pocket. I’ve used it successfully in several trade shows, as the customization aspect of this piece is really great! (I used the company representative’s business cards.) Using only the back of your business cards, you predict a participant’s personal dream price package (no matter what prize or prizes the dream up).

 

Included with the quality instruction booklet is a special gimmick. It helps you do that extra secret “dirty work” thanks makes this routine so unusually strong. Everything in the routine ends clean and can be examined. There are no gimmicks to steal out or ditch. Re-sets in seconds for as many performances as you like.

 


REVIEW:

Nothing more than a mental magic trick with your business cards, but the appealing plot and the (seemingly) impromptu nature of the effect makes it worth a look. The modus operandi combines several classic methods you already know, and Dan Garrett illustrates all the fine points of the routine.

 

The gimmick I received however is very poorly gimmicked (far from the “surgical precision” promised in the manuscript) – I urge you to check it before purchasing.


OVERALL RATING: ok

 

HN
 
Read/post comments: 
http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/viewtopic.php?topic=50136&forum=15
 
 
 

HN Magic Review 84: Linking Life Savers / Linking Polo Mints – Colin Gilbert

 

AD:

 

Colin Gilbert's Linking Lifesavers is one of the best close-up effects to come along in a long time. It's great magic with the most innocent looking items imaginable!

From a roll of Lifesavers, a spectator selects any two. These are genuine Lifesavers. They can even take the two from their own roll.

The Lifesavers are signed and, with no cover of any kind, they are visibly linked together!!

While they are linked, the signatures are verified and the Lifesavers tossed back and forth form hand to hand to prove that they are unbroken.

Then, the Lifesavers are unlinked and both handed back as souvenirs.

Absolutely amazing! The gimmick is just great. No already-linked Lifesavers, glue, threads, etc. The reset is instantaneous and you can repeat it immediately.

Self-working and powerful.

 

REVIEW:

 

Well-produced soft-himber gimmick, which looks (and smells, if you carry it in a Lifesavers pack) just like the real thing. The idea of signing food seems a bit incongruent, but the effect found its place in my linking rubber bands routine.

 

Unfortunately, it is rather delicate (the original Polo Mint version is slightly larger and stronger): you may need to purchase it twice, one for practicing and the other for performance purposes.

 

You can get both versions by contacting Colin Gilbert himself – his address was published on the November (December?) 1998 issue of the Linking Ring. The original version came with an expensive and useless instructional video – fortunately no longer available.

 

OVERALL RATING: good

 

HN
 
 
Read/post comments: 
http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/viewtopic.php?topic=15632&forum=109
 
 
 
 

HN Magic Review 69: Paper Balls over the Head video/DVD – Tony Clark

AD:

Tony Clark had the privilege of being one of Slydini's last students. One of the most valuable routines he learned was the Paper Balls Over the Head - not only because of it's incredible impact and audience reaction, but also because Tony learned Slydini's most powerful technique in misdirection to perform it. Tony used this technique and created a rendition of Slydini's routine. The live performance on this video was shot at one of Tony's 2,200 performances at the Horizon Casino Resort in Lake Tahoe. In that time, Tony honed this paper ball routine into a powerful and comical piece of entertainment that you and your audience will thoroughly enjoy. Tony gives you a step by step, one on one lesson teaching you the details of this fabulous routine.

 
PLUS! A bonus section with Tony's Kids Version!

REVIEW:

A classic comedy act: 5 minutes of impromptu magical entertainment, with nothing more than tissue paper. All the fine points are thoroughly explained, and the Slydini’s influence really shows through. Since Mr. Clark performed the routine more than 2200 times, one could wonder why the video showcases the same performance twice...

Anyway, a detailed lesson in timing and misdirection.

 

OVERALL RATING: good

 

HN

 

Read/post comments:

http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/viewtopic.php?topic=47231&forum=111

 

 

 

HN Magic Review 68: Mobile Mentalism - Mark Strivings

AD:

One of the first books (and the largest) ever written dealing exclusively with the topic of walk-around mentalism. Sixteen effects and routines, all designed for the demanding world of the strolling performer.

Included are several routines by Mark Strivings as well as some of the top performers in the world of mentalism. Effects are included from such luminaries as Docc Hilford, Richard Webster, Terry Nosek, Ed Fowler, John Riggs, Anthony Lindan, Gene Urban and Robert Waller.

Taken together, this is a formidable collection of mentalism. You will use this material! Also included is an audio tape specifically for instruction of an effect called 'Sort-Of Numerology' by Mark Strivings. An impromptu mindreading effect that will knock your audiences out.

In all over 60 pages of hard hitting mentalism!


This is a book you will refer to over and over again. If you do close-up or strolling work of any kind you need this book.

 

REVIEW:

The highlight IMHO is the accompanying audiotape, entirely devoted to the effect “Sort of Numerology”: it includes 2 honest phone performances and a number of details not included in the booklet. A gimmickless mentalism effect well worth the price of the package.

 
The manuscript also describes the basic PW technique (sadly expanded in “Miracles from the Hip”) and an interesting “Out to Lunch” presentation from Anthony Lindan. The rest is easy mental magic.

OVERALL RATING: good



HN

 

Read/post comments:

http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/viewtopic.php?topic=47230&forum=110

 

 

 

HN Magic Review 66: Boomerang Rubber Band – Chris Kenner / Dan Garrett

 

AD:

A most unusual effect. Performer stretches a rubber band around his outstretched thumb and little finger. He then shoots the rubber band across the room about 15 feet. It hits the floor and begins a reverse spin and returns to the performer rolling on its edge!! Charlie Miller created much talk with this effect many years ago in Genii Magazine. Now here is this legendary juggling feat that will amaze everyone.

 

REVIEW:

 

Very visual quickie – the manuscript says that Dai Vernon was badly fooled by it.

 

This impromptu effect is also described in the Dan Harlan’s Magic with Rubber Bands video trilogy, but the printed instructions are more detailed. Be aware, it takes a LONG time to acquire the knack (I found it more difficult than snapping a knot with a shoelace!)

 

Just a quick stunt, but it does get a reaction.

 

OVERALL RATING: ok

 

HN

 

Read/post comments:

http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/viewtopic.php?topic=7266&forum=109

 

 

 

HN Magic Review 64: PK pen - Banachek

 

AD:

A Bic brand pen is balanced on the edge of the table and the performer may then walk across the room. After exerting tremendous mental powers directed at the pen, the pen slowly wiggles then moves and finally falls onto the floor! You pick it up, begin to return it to your pocket but instead use it as you would any ordinary pen.

An uncanny display of your mental powers done with an "ordinary" everyday Bic ink pen.

 

REVIEW:

 

The pen really works as described, and you could be in the other room when it happens.

 

However, the effect is weakened by a few factors:

-      the pen is not a “common” BIC – you hardly see this type of pen around. Perhaps a common Paper Mate (or even better, a “clear” Bic) would have been more appropriate;

-      the regular pen provided is different that the gimmicked one (fine/medium point.... some spectators are sneakier than mentalists)! This is a surprising inconsistency, coming from such a “subtle” thinker;

-      the pen does not write – you can’t use it for previous effects. That’s really a pity, I would have paid a lot more for a few inkblots.

 

OVERALL RATING: good

 

HN

 

Read/post comments:

http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/viewtopic.php?topic=19020&forum=109

 

 

 

HN Magic Review 63: Celebration of Sides video/DVD– Robert Neale

 

AD:

 

"Robert Neale is one of my favorite people to hang out with. Plus, I use one of his creations every day in my show. Years ago my pal Michael Weber introduced me to Robert, and I've been fascinated by him ever since. Here’s your chance to have Michael perform this same introduction; I bet you’ll be as enthralled as I continue to be." - Mac King

"Bob Neale, one of the most creative thinkers on this planet, takes us into an Alice In Wonderland world where impossible things happen and then he teaches us how to do these inexplicable demonstrations...Bravo!" -Barrie Richardson

Celebration of Sides will expose you to many unusual facets of the unique Robert Neale. You'll meet Neale the Topologist, the Artist, the Philosopher and the Trickster as he leads you on a personal tour of his world–a nonsense world that just might distort your perception and alter your view of reality.

Mr. Neale is joined by Michael Weber as they discuss miraculous plots with items like impossible boxes, walls that have invisible holes and multidirectional arrows (objects easily found in any alternative dimension.) Note that there are no cards and no coins, just fresh impossibilities that will confound, enlighten, and delight both you and your audiences.

Included are: Arrow of Good Fortune, (K)not Magic, Whatsabox!, Inside The Beltway, Trapdoor, Borromean Rings, Brick Wall and a special bonus of Robert Neale’s famous Bunny Bill.

Approximate Running Time: 113 Minutes

 

REVIEW:

 

Original video from Bob Neale, with the “enthusiastic” participation of Michael Weber.

 

You will need to build and bring along your props in Borromean Rings, Whatsabox and Arrow of Good Fortune. The Trapdoor Card and the Bunny Bill are both excellent and impromptu effects (see relevant reviews), but were already published years ago - by Karl Fulves and Jay Marshall respectively.

 

Inside the Beltway and Knot Magic are lightweight tricks with a borrowed belt and a piece of string (“tying a knot without letting go the end”).

 

In Brickwall instead, Neale has taken to new heights (pun intended) an old Gardner/Curry idea – a fascinating redistribution of spaces that could be done impromptu with your pre-marked business card.

 

OVERALL RATING: good

 

HN

 

Read/post comments:

http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/viewtopic.php?topic=43057&forum=111

 

 

 

HN Magic Review 61: PK touches – Banachek



AD:

 

2 spectators participate in a haunting story during which they feel touches on their shoulders while the magician is nowhere near them!

What You Get: 10 page spiral-bound booklet with step-by-step instructions and detailed illustrations



REVIEW:

 

Probably Banachek wanted to take the credits for the effect, without giving away the whole store. It shows throughout: cheaply produced booklet, full of typos, remarkably weak presentation (a corny “dead uncle” patter).

 

The effect can be a killer in the right situations, especially if combined with an alternative method (I use a version of Socrate’s Chi Power); but I can’t see anybody performing this effect straight from the book without a LOT of extra work.


OVERALL RATING: good



HN

 

Read/post comments:

http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/viewtopic.php?topic=14373&forum=15

 

 

 

 

HN Magic Review 60: Wonder Penetration – Doug Edwards

AD:
 
This is a fantastic pen through anything effect. This pen looks like a normal Papermate biro, and can be examined by the spectator both before and after the effect, with no switches to perform. The spectator can actually see the pen go through the note! Amazing! Only one pen is used and other effects (such as coin transformations) can also be done.

REVIEW:

I loved this one, a very cheap ordinary-looking Paper Mate that is FULLY examinable after the effect (no, not right before the effect – beware of those misleading ads). A few magicians even took it to pieces to find nothing.

 

Check it before buying, because some of the pens are poorly gimmicked.


OVERALL RATING: good



HN

 

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HN Magic Review 38: Magic with rubber bands videos/DVD vol. 1, 2, 3 – Dan Harlan

 

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Dan Harlan, an innovator in rubberband magic, has organized this video into sections featuring complimentary methods to form fully developed routines. The instructions make these effects nearly effortless to learn! It's easier when you actually see the tricks done and explained by a professional magician!

Vol. 1 includes: Rubber Cuffs (yes, THAT rubber band trick where one rubber band seems to pass right through another), Back Two-Gether, Soft Spot, Twice As Crazy, Crazy Link, Crazy Twist Vanish, Card Cuffs, Climbing Ring, Snap Two, Post Modern String Art, Appearing Band, Band Parenthood, 2 to 1 Join, Recurring Nightmare, 1 to 2 Split, Multiple Appearance, Tongue Tied, Hindu Bands. 18 effects in all!

Vol. 2 includes: Pseudo Wrist Penetration, Thumb Twist, Finger Twist, Deck Twist, Delayed Snap and Penetration, Hypnotic Link, Missing Link, Breakaway, Breaking Up the Band, Spread Suspension, Resonance, Knot Restored, Pans, Stranded

Vol 3 includes: Rubber Morph, Willy Worm, Penetrating Matches, Snap Back, Spaghetti Up Nose, Jump Switch, Boomerang Band, Star, Starweaver, Latter Ladder, Timezones, Cash Delay, Acrobaticlip, Jumping Rubber Band, Twist-On, Delayed Jump, One-Armed Band-Up, Doublejointed (Penetration), Jumper Stumper, Emergency Pull, Mass Vanish to Ball

 

REVIEW:

 

There’s a whole bunch of weak puzzles in these tapes, but with some practice you will surely be able to come up with 5 minutes of solid close-up magic. The best single rubber band item in the magic circuit is still, IMHO, Michael Ammar’s Classic Renditions Vol. 2 (just compare his Crazyman’s Handcuffs with Harlan’s version in his Magic with Rubber Bands vol. 1).

 

A special mention for a penetration effect with 2 borrowed matches (and no rubber bands) that uses a different method, and could therefore reinforce similar rubber band effects.

 

For those interested in creating full rubber bands routines, Mr. Harlan’s tapes are certainly worth a look.

 

OVERALL RATING: ok

 

HN

 

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HN Magic Review 37: Psychokinetic Silverware video/DVD – Banachek/Gerry Mc Cambridge

 

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If you really could bend metal with your mind, Psycho-kinetic Silverware is exactly how it would look. You’ll see cold, hard steel melt like butter–bending, twisting, breaking and moving seemingly on its own, even in a spectator’s hand!

Banachek’s metal bending is so amazing and so realistic that he has often been accused of being and doing “the real thing.” In fact, after studying Banachek’s metal bending the McDonnell Laboratory for Psychic Research proudly announced to the scientific community that they had discovered someone with genuine psychic abilities! The National Inquirer and other media have also heralded Banachek’s psychokinetic talents.

On this videotape, Gerry and Banachek finally reveal the real secrets to these amazing routines in PK Silverware. Not only will you get to see how everything looks in performance, you’ll also learn the real inside work, the fine points and psychology of metal bending. These are secrets which have have been very tightly guarded...until now.

 

REVIEW:

 

Interesting video (so far the best approach on spoon bending), courtesy of the numerous psychological subtleties involved.

 

Unfortunately, cheap cutlery is not an option: don’t expect to perform the full routines (6 effects, divided in 3 sets) with any borrowed fork. Also, the last 2 effects (the most impressive) require some advance preparation.

 

OVERALL RATING: ok

 

HN

 

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HN Magic Review 36: Easy to Master Money Miracles videos/DVD vol. 1, 2 and 3 – Michael Ammar

 

AD:

A rich collection of powerful money magic - both new and classic. World Champion magician Michael Ammar has assembled the very best of the practical yet astonishing routines using coins and currency ever shown on video. This is any-time, any-place magic which you can use to astonish spectators anywhere!

Volume One

Volume Two

Volume Three

 

REVIEW:

 

Mr. Ammar has kept a pretty clean record on these 15 years – this trilogy is no exception.

 

Sure, you’ll find a lot of fillers and vacuous manipulative stunts (several tricks, such as Matrix, Flying Eagles, Coins thru silk and c/s transpositions are illustrated twice) but you’ll get away with a few workable close-up effects with coins and bills.

 

OVERALL RATING: good

 

HN

 

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HN Magic Review 35: Psychokinetic Time (PK Time) – Banachek (Steve Shaw)

 

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Do you remember the stunning David Blaine’s magic effect performed on TV? In effect, he borrowed a watch from a man sitting in his car and checked the correct time. He placed the watch back in the man’s hands and then asked him to think of a number to move the time. The man said "24" and after a few seconds of mental hocus-pocus, the man opened his hands and saw the watch indeed MOVE AHEAD 24 MINUTES! The reaction was incredible!

 
Now, you can learn the original method and forcing techniques used for this amazing effect in Banacheck’s 26- page manuscript Psycho-kinetic Time. After being long out of print, Banachek has re-released this monumental effect. Psychokinetic Time comes complete with nine clear photos and descriptive text that details the ultimate impromptu method for altering the time on a spectator’s watch while held in their own hand! Other effects and concepts with watches are also discussed using the secret principles. No "gadgets" or difficult handling. This is for the serious magician, mentalist or conjuring enthusiast - but can be mastered by anyone!

 

REVIEW:

 

Cons (unconvincingly addressed by the author):

- The effect should not be repeated for the same crowd;

- You cannot use any borrowed watch;

- The angles are indeed an issue;

- The REAL success rate is far from being 100%.

 

Pros:

- Great reactions when it hits;

- Really impromptu, no set-up

- propless (apart from the borrowed watch, obviously).

 

A detailed script is included in the Wonder Words series.

 

OVERALL RATING: good

 

HN

 

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HN Magic Review 30: Jump! – John Kennedy

 

AD:

 

A pen rests inside of a cup. You concentrate, stare at the cup, and something strange happens - the pen jumps out of the cup!

 

With Jump you can make a pen, pencil, spoon, or straw jump out of a cup or glass. You can even make popcorn pop right out of its bowl!

 

And no one will know how it works because they can examine everything afterwards.

 

Jump is a state-of-the-art electronic device that operates with a standard 9-volt battery (included). One battery will cause over a hundred jumps! The device stays hidden away from the action leaving no clue to the telekinetic mystery.

 

 

REVIEW:

 

Good gimmick, but also very delicate: mine tangled a dozen times so far. The effect is great (a few spectators really jump!), but it is not meant for really impromptu situations, and for sure not with a borrowed item. You need to set it up in advance at your performing location, with everything in place.

 

The timing mechanism is invariable – a mentalism presentation would probably have benefited from a longer delay.

 

OVERALL RATING: good

 

HN

 

 

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HN Magic Review 21: An Enchanted Evening – Kenton Knepper

 

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Here’s what Kenton himself says about this "enchanted" work:

 

"I am really excited about this diverse manuscript for a lot of reasons. It’s 60 full size pages. It has magic, mentalism, readings, essays and more in it. I have put in some of my favorite new material for both stage and close-up. I really LOVE this material as I do it often!"

 

Here are some highlights:

 

Spoon Bending Parties -- a detailed examination which many mentalists have asked me to share with them alone, or keep to myself.

Bending Coins with no moves, and Manifesting Coins as desired by a spectator.

Packet Trick Readings -- this is a riot! Magicians love it.

Mentalists hate it. You should use it. How can it be this easy and startling too?

Flower Psychological Force as a Reading, with Outs as Personality Tests and more.

Flowers From Fingertips. Really. A no palming, no holder spring flower production that has fooled many well-versed performers. It’s EASY. An amazing invention.

A wide and eclectic blend of magic, mentalism, essays on enchantment, psychology, linguistics and more that I use almost daily in my work.

The Full Linguistically Twisted Kenton Tarot Trick for BSM -- ALL the details!

Beautiful, poetic, miraculous, memorable magic and mentalism that is truly different.

Loads more I can’t even begin to discus

 

As one friend put it, "It’s as eclectic and as interesting as you -- it’s pure Kenton, but everyone will benefit from it greatly whoever they are". I sure hope so. That was my full intention. The whole thing is a bit beyond words. Read it and you’ll know what I mean.

 

If you cannot find something worthwhile for you to USE in this one, I’ll stop putting stuff out. I’m serious. This is the material that has made others, as well as myself, seem truly miraculous to our audiences. I know you can do valuable things with this stuff too.

 

We say if you like Kenton, you’ll love this!

 

REVIEW:

 

Interesting book. Contents include: a great addition to your invisible coins routine from Bryce Kuhlman, Ray Koenig’s Bent Cent (also sold separately), a rose force application, some wadding card stuff, spoon bending parties patters (you do not want to do that, hopefully!), nice quotes from R.W. Emerson &C, and the usual glorified blah blah

 

OVERALL RATING: good

 

HN

 

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HN Magic Review 1: Dynamic Mysteries – Richard Osterlind

 

AD:

 

Richard Osterlind unlocks the secrets of his high-impact stunners! A top

professional, a man who earns a six figure income performing magic and

mentalism, Richard's turbo charged material takes him across the world

performing for stellar fees which most magicians dream about. As the inventor of mind-boggling mysteries, his creations have a rock solid reputation as the best of the best! Dynamic Mysteries is material straight from Richard's repertoire, astonishing audiences and producing powerful and practical effects! In this book, you'll learn 17 of his mind boggling dynamic effects!

 

This 99-page book teaches you in great detail of Richard's close-up and stage miracles. A great gift idea for magicians, this book is perfect for the Close-Up, Stand-Up, Stage, Table-To-Table, Trade Show, Restaurant, Radio and Television, and Corporate magicians alike.

 

 

REVIEW:

 

What if a spectator chooses the word “Modesty” in an Osterlind’s booktest routine?

 

Anyway, I bought the book for the effect “Miracle Thought Projection”, and I am pleased with it – good enough for me. You will unfortunately need real cards, but it is a nice addition if you already enjoy the mental card projections of Docc Hilford (Real Mind Reading video), Derren Brown (Pure Effect and The Devil’s Picturebook), Kenton Knepper and David Greene (Killer Konceptions) etc.

 

The book includes shameless plugs to Jeff Busby’s products, along with methods and thoughts for Ring Flight, ESP card tricks, his own Apex Stainless Steel Blindfold, John Cornelius’ gimmicked calculator, the clip line prediction etc.

 

There are however too many compromises for me - compare a direct mind reading effect with numbers such as Strivings’ excellent "Sort of Numerology" (in his book “Mobile Mentalism”) with the Osterlind plot: gimmicked calculator, pieces of paper, misreading, one ahead etc etc.

 

OVERALL RATING: Good

 

HN

 

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