Now You See Me, Now You Don't (2005)

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Overall Rating 76%
Overall Rating
Ranked #12,774
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It seemed like an ordinary day. Dad is experimenting in the lab, Mom is at home boiling water, while their six year old son, Alex is playing around her. But this day is different. This day Dad brings something home from the lab. And the next morning...Alex becomes invisible. --IMDb
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Review by Chad
Added: March 20, 2008
Have you ever seen a movie trailer, and after watching that brief little compilation of clips from the film at hand, figured that you knew exactly what the film was about? You see the best moments of the film, and in your mind, you piece together what the film is about and - in some cases - you may even get an idea as to how it will end. This is what I did when I saw the trailer for Now You See Me, Now You Don't; this teaser presents us with an intriguing storyline, but it seems to be pretty obvious how the film will play out. When I saw it, I immediately thought "It's going to be revealed that [insert idea here]." I still thought it was a damned intriguing trailer, so I showed it to the woman of the house later on, and she asked me if it was about [insert the same idea I had here]. At this point, I thought that it was pretty safe to say that I had a firm grasp on how this film was going to turn out. Never have I been so wrong.

The storyline for this thirty-minute short is fairly involved and has plenty of twists, but to say too much about it would be treading into spoiler territory. What I can tell you is that the entire film revolves around a mom (Dóra Létay), her husband (Ernő Fekete), and their child Alex (Vitéz Ábrahám). The family seems to be average enough at first, but as time ticks by, we realize that each member of this family has their own set of issues. Things get really bizarre when we learn that the father is some sort of scientist and that he has finished his latest creation at the lab. What is this creation? Well, he decides not to tell his wife, but the next day, their son disappears. Wait, that's not entirely true: their son disappears, but they can still hear him talking to them. There's a whole lot more to this story, but I'm just going to leave it at that for this review.

Now You See Me, Now You Don't mixes together elements of the supernatural thriller with a bit of family drama, and while the above synopsis and the aforementioned trailer will probably lead you to believe that it's going to turn out to be more of the same, think again - whatever ideas that you may have floating around in your head as to how this is going to turn out are probably wrong. Even though there is a shocking revelation towards the end revolving around their child, this is not a M. Night Shyamalan-inspired thriller that is nothing more than a setup for some bizarre final twist; no, the main focus here is to show us how this family responds to this revelation and how they pull together for one another in their darkest hour.

I realize that this review has been extremely vague thus far, but this is out of necessity as the entire selling point of the film revolves around one revelation that I refuse to spoil here. What I can say is that the film is unlike most thrillers out there, and in fact, to even call it a thriller after everything has been said and done is a bit misleading. I'll also say that I enjoyed the film far more than I thought I would, and this was due to the way that the events are presented as well as the excellent acting abilities on display from all involved. I'm usually not a huge critic when it comes to performances (especially in an indie flick), but a storyline like this can be made or broken by the leading men and women; thankfully, everyone brought their A-game to this one, and the end result was a film that was both haunting and touching at the same time.

Check it out if it's playing at a festival near you, and keep an eye out for the inevitable DVD release. The film has won almost thirty major awards according to the official site, and trust me when I say that there's a damned good reason for that. 9/10.
Mr. Mistoffelees #1: Mr. Mistoffelees - added March 21, 2008 at 4:43pm
This sounds pretty good, even though the review isn't too detailed : P.
Chad #2: Chad - added March 21, 2008 at 5:58pm
Yeah, this was a tricky one to write without spoiling everything, because everything revolves around that one twist.
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