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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Dvd, Video tape, Audio tape & Compact discs. » » Michael Close Devious DVD set (1 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Domino Magic
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Well Joe & Brad, you guys continue to beat the dead horse. I feel bad that this is what magic is for you two. I've got shows to do, so I'm going to leave you two to continue beating up on Tom Cutts. Sad really.
Joe Mauro
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Domino Magic, Tom Cutts beat me up for having an opinion on what I viewed on the DVD in question. According to you, he should be allowed to spew his company ( L & L ) slanted views, unchallenged. To do so would hurt magic.

Listening to Tom Cutts defend the L & L shoots is like listening to the Chinese Govt. defend their civil rights record.

Domino Magic, are you Tom Cutts? Louis Falanga? Anyone associated with L & L? For someone that asked "Is your life so meaningless that this is what you waste your time over?" you sure spend a great deal of time reading and posting here. That's right, you mean the advice for others, not yourself.

You have 'shows to do'? Multiple shows, tonight? LOL. It's funny when people that don't perform, pretend that they do.
~Joe
Martino
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Sad, so sad! Think I'll choose to spend my time taking in the valuable lessons taught on this DVD set.
"There's a difference between not knowing how something is done and knowing it can't be done!" - Simon Aronson
Joe Mauro
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Quote:
On 2010-04-11 07:14, Martino wrote:
Sad, so sad! Think I'll choose to spend my time taking in the valuable lessons taught on this DVD set.


Great. Please comment on them. This is the review section,so ANY aspects of the DVD are open.
~Joe
Domino Magic
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Quote:
On 2010-04-10 23:24, Joe Mauro wrote:
Domino Magic, are you Tom Cutts? Louis Falanga? Anyone associated with L & L?

You have 'shows to do'? Multiple shows, tonight? LOL. It's funny when people that don't perform, pretend that they do.


No, I'm not either one, have never met either one and have no connections to L&L, aside from being a customer.

And yes "shows". I had a show last night and just finished performing at a Sunday brunch. It's funny when people who don't perform pretend they know the schedules of people who do.
Martino
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I did comment on them..."valuable lessons taught on this DVD set" were my exact words. I also posted my thoughts a couple of times on this thread http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/viewt......start=60
"There's a difference between not knowing how something is done and knowing it can't be done!" - Simon Aronson
Joe Mauro
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"valuable lessons taught on this DVD set" is said about almost every relase these days. lol.
~Joe
rnaviaux
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Quote:
On 2010-04-11 15:42, Joe Mauro wrote:
"valuable lessons taught on this DVD set" is said about almost every relase these days. lol.


Marketing being what it is this is no real surprise. One could make a comment like this about almost any commercial. Having a relatively small dvd library I hesitate to make comparison's as I don't have enough to compare with.

Having seen Mr. Close's recent lecture tour and having all of his written work this DVD set makes for a great video "record" of the lecture I went to. I suppose if one hadn't read any of his books nor seen him lecture then this set would be all the more impressive. (I don't have his other dvd's so can't compare to those.)

I think the greatest value is brought to the viewer in seeing how presentations are constructed around different effects he presents. This has always been something I could use more good examples to learn from. Having various concepts of Mr. Close's brought to life on the screen helps to demonstrate his approach to magic.

Its an added bonus to have some great tricks to learn that I hadn't seen before.

I'm going to have to perform the Sideswiped/Bammo combo effect at least once to enjoy using the "accidental" convincer. John Bannon's Play it Straight Triumph has a similar moment but takes academy award winning acting to convince the specs that you forgot to have the card returned. Of all the times I have performed it only once do I feel I nailed the forgetting to have the card replaced. Closes routining avoids the perfect acting necessary to take advantage of the card that wasn't returned.

I guess if you really like to analyze your magic then this set will complement your current habits.

Writing this reminds me of an article about Lance Burton I read a long time ago. (Can't remember if it was Genii or Magic.) There was a discussion about a discovery Mr. Burton had made that he was very excited about. What was it? A slight placement difference of some pin in his clothing. Made a steal or something easier.

I too get a kick out of finding these little things out. All the more so because of my limited performing opportunities. (There is less chance I will make such a breakthrough.) One such thing I figured out had to do with the "moment" in Galaxy. I came up with what I think is a great little presentational cover that helps sell the whole effect. (I explained this long ago on another thread somewhere.)

I think of these issues and discuss them with my buddies when we get together. (They are probably getting tired of hearing about my rants on signed card effects.) I so enjoy studying the materials published by professionals that resonate a similar vibe. Close and Ortiz are the two that I most closely identify with as a result.

Hope this helps any prospective buyers in determining if this set is for you or not.
msmaster
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Good post rnaviaux. Those nuances that one collects that add up to a finished whole only seem to come after thousands of performances and studying one who has accomplished that work, like Close, is always a pleasure.
cairo
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My Close set arrived a few days ago and I'm very happy. The card magic on these dvds, especially the faro stuff, is material I will actually use. There isn't a weak effect in the whole series.
nimrod
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L & L audience is miles far from being regular audience. It's halfway between the average person and a complete stooge. Any yet I prefer it over any DVD with no audience at all, like Sankey talking to himself or a DVD with a lone mentalist trying to impress his mentalist friend (without giving names).

Nimrod , Israel
tophead
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Pass on this. keep your money. so many better things you could buy instead.
crestfallenLyric
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So what does the audience have to do with the quality of L/L dvds? I own several and the teaching is superb and reliable. Same goes with these Close DVD's, though I also admit the girl may have looked...uncomfortable...with the teasing. But all in good humor, I have seen worse, lol.

Just trying to get back on topic.
"It is better for a man to honor his profession, than to be honored by it." - Robert-Houdin
truthteller
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Anyone else hearing the voice of Dana Carvey's Church Lady in their head right now?
Dennis Loomis
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Well, a few days have elapsed and no one has taken a swing at L & L or Tom Cutts. I find this whole thing rather bizarre. People who were not present discussing a shoot with some that were and claiming to know more about it. I don't intend to argue further. Clearly there are those contributing to this thread whose minds are made up and are not open to rational dialogue.

However, I will make one point which I haven't found expressed on this thread: one thing that professional performers know how to do is to generate response from an audience. In the days of vaudeville, there were so many techniques developed that allowed a good performer to extend the number of curtain calls they got and some vaudevillians prided themselves on being able to pull more applause than others. Performing situations vary. In the real world you may have to watch a performance when the lighting is not good and so it's hard to see. The P.A. system may be poor and you can't hear. In the real world the audience may contain a lot of children who simply have not yet learned how to behave as an audience. You seldom get a standing ovation from children because they don't know a thing about it. And groups of young children may not even clap at all because it's not something that they are used to doing. (Do you applaud for a great act when you're watching it on television?)

So, the L & L shoots are probably not typical. There is great lighting. The group is composed of adults only. Many are magicians or entertainers themselves. And, most importantly, Louis hires very good performers with lots of experience. This is not a "normal" situation. And if it bothers you that the performers get a great response, that's to be expected in this circumstance. I've attended tons of these shoots in at least three of the different venues that Louis has used over the past couple of decades. I have never once heard Louis or any of his employees ask anyone to clap loudly, to jump to their feet, etc. If you watch the performances you will see that it's the applause of the audience which makes a bridge between effects. But, sometimes the performer cannot go from one trick to the next they way he would in the real world because the camera's have to be stopped to make adjustments. And so, the audience IS asked to begin each segment by applauding to recreate what would have happened in the real world; the performer would have gone directly into his next effect as soon as the applause for the last effect has died down. This is NOT a false reaction because we are not reacting to anything. Merely trying to help Louis make the shoot seem as real as possible.

Dennis Loomis
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<BR>http://www.loomismagic.com
rnaviaux
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Vaudeville - a topic I used to love reading about when I was young.

I wonder how many techniques of performing on a stage were lost with the arrival of TV.

(Now with the appearance of instant streaming of movies and the mass disappearance of DVD stores if vaudeville won't be able to make some sort of comeback.)

Re-watched Vol 1 last night. Couldn't help but imagine myself performing these effects as I watched late into the evening comfortably ensconced on my couch recovering from the flu.

Really a great set.
truthteller
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Quote:
On 2010-05-14 13:02, Dennis Loomis wrote:
I have never once heard Louis or any of his employees ask anyone to clap loudly, to jump to their feet, etc.

Dennis Loomis


Dear Dennis, Tom and any other would be L and L apologist - I have never, nor do I know of anyone, who has every suggested, implied, or outright claimed that Louis, anyone on his staff, or anyone not on his staff has ever told the audience to do anything.

Did you read that?

Do you understand that?

I ask, because this is the claim L and L apologists continually try to refute.

It is a claim no one, as far as I am aware, is making.

But please, take one single moment out of your life and process what I wrote - no one, of which I am aware, is claiming Louis coerces his audience to respond.

That's not how the situation came to be.

Get it?

(Willing to bet you didn't, but that's ok. I'll restate it again (and again) when I have to.)

Quote:
On 2010-05-14 13:02, Dennis Loomis wrote:
And, most importantly, Louis hires very good performers with lots of experience.


uh huh
Review King
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I have enjoyed the majority of L&L projects. I don't really care what the process of audience choosing is ( meaning it's a non issue for me, but I have enjoyed Brad educating us about it as it supports what the majority of viewers have always suspected ). I feel that way because I think I know when the reactions don't fit an effect or joke. But, Brad Henderson raised excellent points and to dismiss them is simply living in fantasy land.

I think for a learning student, Louis should take into account what Brad is saying. If they see a lighter make a burn mark on a business card and the audience goes nuts, they might wonder why that doesn't happen for them. When Jay Sankey did his shoot, John went bonkers over a non issue and it was even too much for Jay. A learning student may not pick up on these things.

Now, I quite enjoyed the Michael Close set. He could easily be a stand up comic if he dropped the magic. His timing and instincts are wonderful. Also, the magic on the 2 dvds are typical for him. Well thought out and would fool and entertain the most discerning audience.

On the controversy of him calling the girl "what are you a child". It was meant to be funny. I think a better line would have been "are you crazy?". It doesn't have the sting the child remark did and is funnier ( to me ). But, what do I know. You don't see anyone offering to film me;-)

Chris
"Of all words of tongue and pen,
the saddest are, "It might have been"

..........John Greenleaf Whittier
truthteller
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While I think, as Chris has pointed out, the critical issue is the impact these choices have on the educational process, I think the emotional issue (or at least what gets my hackels up) is the refusal for people friendly with land l to even acknowledge that there is an industry wide perception that the audiences are hyper-reactive, let alone an admission that they, indeed, are.

To quote Her Honor Judge Judy, don't pee on my leg and tell me it's raining.
Futureal
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Quote:
I think for a learning student, Louis should take into account what Brad is saying. If they see a lighter make a burn mark on a business card and the audience goes nuts, they might wonder why that doesn't happen for them. When Jay Sankey did his shoot, John went bonkers over a non issue and it was even too much for Jay. A learning student may not pick up on these things.


The bit you're referring to is when Jay did a tongue-in-cheek bit making a spoon move by gravity and pretending it was meant to be a trick, as a joke. The audience member you're talking to played along and clapped in a sarcastic way.

How is that "going bonkers?"

If you think he thought that that was a legitimate trick, go back and watch the clip again. He is clearly playing along in a sarcastic sort of way.
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