(Close Window)
Topic: Passport by David Regal - review
Message: Posted by: MaxfieldsMagic (Dec 30, 2009 10:37AM)
Official description:

The spectator selects any card, secretly writes the name of a location on it's face, then returns it to the deck. The performer waves a black leather embossed passport case over the cards, then is able to tell the spectator the name of the unspoken location. The passport case is opened and a passport removed from inside. The pages of the passport are flipped, and a face down card is found inside - the card is removed and it proves to be the card selected by the spectator complete with his handwritten location. The card can be given to the spectator. NOTE: If desired, the passport can be bound with rubber bands and in view prior to the selection of a card. This is a card-to-impossible-location effect with no forces, no palming, and no hesitation.

Where to purchase and view demo video:

http://www.davidregal.com/#;


Review:

Can't say enough about this effect, and the quality of the props. The props themselves are absolutely top-notch, professionally made with precision, and are elegant in appearance. The wallet is made of well-stitched black leather, suitable for the most (or least) formal setting. The passport itself is so well made and realistic, including the stamps, that there's really no reason to substitute a real one unless you live outside the U.S. and want to use one from your own country. The effect is available in domestic (U.S.), domestic/Mexico and International versions, all in a choice of either red or blue backed bicycle cards.

When the package arrived and I looked at the gimmicks I was stumped; other than the basic idea, it wasn't what I was expecting. How did all of this fit together? Purposely didn't watch the DVD for about a half hour while I thought about it - suffice to say that the solution is more than satisfying. David did a fabulous job thinking this through in every detail. The DVD walks you through multiple alternate handlings, all of which are terrific. I don't see how this effect could possibly be done more cleanly or easily.

This is a fun routine, with plenty of opportunity for gags (David supplies a couple on the DVD to get started). Because it deals with travel, rather than numbers and suits, it has a built in human theme that connects with the spectator's experiences or desires.

Having the rubber bands around the wallet, and the freedom with which you can handle and display the wallet, makes this routine cleaner and even more convincing than most other no-palm wallets, IMO. You can even name the person's selected "destination" before doing the reveal, thanks to the ingenious nature of the gimmicks.

I wonder if, at some point, replacement gimmicks might be available for the one aspect that is likely to show wear over time.

The price for the entire package is more than fair. Without question, this is one of the best magic purchases I've ever made.
Message: Posted by: MaxfieldsMagic (Dec 30, 2009 12:57PM)
Correction: there is only one version of this prop (ie, no "international" version).

Even though the wallet is stamped to match a U.S. passport, it shouldn't be an issue using it with a real international passport inside, as the focus is never on what's written on the outside of the wallet.
Message: Posted by: TheGreatRaymondo (Jun 6, 2010 07:13AM)
Now this has caught my attention! It does look like Mr Regal has gon and done it... A genuine card to wallet with no palming. The Holy Grail for guys like me who are less than confident in palming a card when performing live and the heat is truly on. Bravo Mr Regal!
TGR
Message: Posted by: jlibby (Jun 6, 2010 11:04AM)
Mr. Regal has created a fun and unusual variation on the card to wallet trick. It's currently priced way too cheaply for what you get. It is apparently still available for purchase at his website.

Joe Libby
San Antonio, TX
Message: Posted by: RC4MAG (Jun 6, 2010 03:34PM)
After watching the demo, I immediately thought it looks like an updated version of a trick Steve Spill sold back in the late 70's. Or maybe it was just in his lecture notes.
David did seem to add a little more to the handling.
Message: Posted by: jimhlou (Jun 6, 2010 05:16PM)
I love this efffect - very clever handling. My "secret something" is showing wear, but I continue to use it. so far no one has noticed, or at least I don't think they have. I guess it would be easy enough to just make another one.

Jim
Message: Posted by: David Regal (Jun 6, 2010 05:18PM)
RC4MAG -

Yes, absolutely. Several people have used various elements from Passport in the past. I just put the elements together in a way that seemed to make sense to me, but I did came up with a twist on the typical gimmick, one that allows for some things unique to Passport.
Message: Posted by: Cameron Francis (Jun 6, 2010 09:11PM)
This is a GREAT trick!
Message: Posted by: LeViking (Jun 6, 2010 09:30PM)
How would you rate difficulty level ?

I am pretty new to magic.
Message: Posted by: jlibby (Jun 6, 2010 09:47PM)
[quote]
On 2010-06-06 22:30, LeViking wrote:
How would you rate difficulty level ?

I am pretty new to magic.
[/quote]

You might want to ask David Regal for a more detailed assessment. But I will say the trick isn't technically difficult; that's part of the beauty of this routine. It will take some practice to get the handling down pat.

Joe Libby
San Antonio, TX
Message: Posted by: rklew64 (Jun 6, 2010 09:52PM)
Beginner level: meaning it will be done poorly (rushed with no confidence) with flashing and with an non smooth flow to the routine. You may know the gross mechanics but not the performance subtleties, angles, timing, on/off beats, internalized patter, outs, etc.

Intermediate: Better presentation, relaxed and hopefully less rookie mistakes all pointing to obvious experience - good and bad.

You can know the "magic" but not know the Magic. - Practice, Find your style and kind of magic, practice, read and study (philosophy, theory, acting, routining, history), practice and refine. I'm not writing this to discourage you, I wish and hope for your experience to be rewarding and truly FUN.

I'm going to assume you are not coming into magic half arsed and being a hack. But this all depends - are you learning to be a pro or just as a hobbyist.
Message: Posted by: Failed Magician (Jun 7, 2010 04:06AM)
Well put. It means almost everyone can do this, but the presentation is the one will make the difference between a real "mentalist" or beginner.

Will it work if we perform to non-US citizens or perhaps people that have different passport? Just to make sure.
Message: Posted by: jlibby (Jun 7, 2010 07:16AM)
[quote]
On 2010-06-07 05:06, Failed Magician wrote:

Will it work if we perform to non-US citizens or perhaps people that have different passport? Just to make sure.
[/quote]

I would think that shouldn't be a problem at all. The included passport should be recognizable as a passport to just about everyone whether they are US citizens or not.

Joe Libby
San Antonio, TX
Message: Posted by: jimhlou (Jun 7, 2010 07:17AM)
It comes with an authentic looking passport. Just use it, and you're OK. I use my real passport because it fits nicely in the leather wallet, but I don't think any spectator is going to question the passport per-se. They're too focused on their card and what's happening with it.

Jim
Message: Posted by: Pete Biro (Jun 7, 2010 10:43AM)
Depending on your personality and style, you could say you got the passport from a street vendor selling stuff out of a van with the motor running.
Message: Posted by: Failed Magician (Jun 7, 2010 11:44AM)
Ok, so if I understand it correctly, I can actually use my own real passport (from any country) to be put inside the black leather wallet-type container, and when I flip through my passport pages, I will find their chosen card and their destination they wrote?
Message: Posted by: jimhlou (Jun 7, 2010 04:43PM)
The leather passport wallet is 3 3/4" X 5 1/2". If your passport will fit inside, you're good to go.

Jim
Message: Posted by: jlibby (Jun 7, 2010 09:16PM)
The passport wallet does have the US Seal embossed on it, but if you're using a non-US passport, I still don't think anyone would really notice as it doesn't have focus for very long. Just wanted to point that out.

And it would be very simple to prepare your own passport (you won't destroy it, by the way!) for use in the routine.

That reminds me, I need to get my photo taken for the passport that's included with the effect!

Joe Libby
San Antonio, TX
Message: Posted by: Failed Magician (Jun 8, 2010 06:36AM)
Thanks Jim, I think almost all passport around the world have the same dimension of size.
Message: Posted by: tdowell (Jun 25, 2010 11:56PM)
I like the concept of the Passport wallet. Lots of possibilities, easy to perform, no palm, and allows a logical reason for having a larger wallet with another folder inside containing the chosen card. However, I have to be honest: I don't like the card removal from the inner passport. No offense to Mr. Regal who I have the utmost respect for, but it just kinda looks funny. Reminds me of a variation of Kohler's envelope effect but without the advantage or ability to "clean up" at the end.

I would tend to stick with Mullica or Hip Pocket Mullica as the zipper allows the card to be removed slowly from the inner wallet. Just my opinion.
Message: Posted by: David Regal (Jun 26, 2010 09:26AM)
That's a totally legitimate preference - I LOVE wallets, one of the few magic fetishes I have. I don't own every single one, just way too many. The bit you are referring to, where the card is removed from a book (or passport in my case), is by T.A. Waters, and obviously I'm a fan as I use it. All I can say is when Water's sequence is done right the illusion is perfect, so maybe I stuttered or went too fast in the demo. As I now have done it 1000 times, I can better describe what the action should be: The selection NEVER moves. Things move around it. That's true for the entire effect. The card keeps staying in the same place while the world is stripped away from it.

While watching other magicians use their wallets I saw that some took the card out slow, others faster, and it seemed to me that reaction-wise, it was six of one, half a dozen of the other. When it came out fast no one ever thought it wasn't in the wallet - taking it out slow was a little "extra proof" like the extra proof provided by the versions of Bruno Hening's card in canister where the containing box is shown empty [i]after[/i] the card is dumped out. Every magician who ever performed the earlier, classic method will admit that there is never a question of the card coming out of the container, and zero heat on the container. Showing the container empty after the fact is a solution to a non-problem. They see one item in the container. That one item is dumped out. "Is the container now empty?" is simply not one of the questions that comes to mind to a spectator. This is why the Chop Cup works!

An even more extreme example is Ring Flite. Using a reel is a fantastic method, and the one I currently use...but I have to admit that the less fancy methods, where you do a false transfer and essentially secretly place the ring on a key chain, have the exact same impact. One would think that being able to show the hand empty before going to get the key chain would be a huge plus, but in practice that just isn't the case. Similarly, in the classic method of card to wallet or card to pocket, the hand can't be shown empty before going to the wallet or pocket, but palming is a perfect method.

So for what it's worth, that's my take. There are enough wallets out there for everyone to be able to have one that is both deceptive and enjoyable to perform.
Message: Posted by: 1KJ (Sep 27, 2013 09:14PM)
It has been a while since any posts, but I just had to share this.

I have this, and it is just amazing!

On a separate, but related note, in watching an EMC 2011 DVD, there was one Talk about two ways to view magic:

1. If it is magic for magic sake, then, if you could do "real" magic, what would you do? It's a great question to ponder. If you could really do magic, would you use that magic to make a sponge ball appear in your hand? Probably not. This brings us to #2:

2. Magic for the purpose of entertainment or moving people mentally or emotionally. If you are doing magic for the purpose of entertainment or touching people in a significant way, then any magic effect or routine will do, as long as you make it serve the purpose. The more entertaining or touching, the better. If you do something with sponge balls, and it has people falling off their seats in laughter, then you have succeeded.

This is why I like this effect. It gives the card to wallet more value by engaging participants in something real or desired. i.e. engaging them in a routine about a trip that they have taken or a trip they would want to take.

I like to use this to change people's lives:

First, I love the modifications David has made to some of the devices used that allows this also to be a mentalism prop.

I ask the participant to think of a country or city they would really love to visit, NOT one they have visited in the past. If they could only go one place, where would it be? They write it down on a selected card along with a date when they think they might go. I tell them to pick a date that might give them enough time to save some money and plan for the trip. I then ask them to imagine what they are seeing in that city or country.
Using the methods described by David, I either draw what I think they are seeing or I can simply describe what I see they are thinking.
I then tell them that since I always carry a deck of cards with me, and they are so cheap, I use them to write things down. I write down the names of cities I have visited, along with the date I was there so I will be reminded of the great memories.
I have a card with a city and date written on it.
I open the passport and take out my card.
I ask them to find their card in the deck to compare to my card.
They find my card.
To their surprise, their card was in my passport.
When they take their card as a souvenir, it is not only a souvenir, it becomes their goal keepsake and they usually start to think about how to make the trip a reality. Wow! Now that is magic that changes people's lives.

David, thank you for being such an inspiration!

KJ
Message: Posted by: David Regal (Sep 28, 2013 06:36AM)
What a nice routine!