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ku7uk3
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Review: Pool Ball Miracles
By Craig Petty

Effect:
There are 8 routines shown on the DVD that are all themed to Pool balls. With an ebook that has an additional 25 tricks in it. Amongst them you will be able to perform almost any trick you can image with a Pool Ball.

Performing:
If you want to put together a whole routine centred on Pool Balls, then this is the set to get. I’m told that the balls are made slightly smaller so that loading them is easier for those pocket steals, holders and manipulators. The gimmick ball from a distance will do its job and the special card for one of the routines is included.
But I’ll be honest with you in the fact that none of the tricks jumped out at me as ‘must perform now’. All the tricks felt like filler effects without any standout routines to call upon. Many of them require a hanky or cards to force a ball and this became repetitive in nature after a while.
None of the effects felt like an opener or closer, they are all middle of the routine tricks. There is nothing wrong with that, but it must be said.

Missing:
Required to perform several of the routines is a hanky, blank faced cards, a packet trick wallet, Coloured Spot stickers and some blue-backed Bicycle cards. Most magicians should be able to find these items lying around the house or for very cheap prices. But they are all not included, which is contradictory to the description that says ‘Everything you need has been included inside’.

The Black-8 Ball:
I believe it was David Penn who started producing a back eight ball as the kicker finish to a card routine, which has since made its way into many other effects as a final load. Many magicians love this trick, so I am a little confused as to why there is no black-8 ball amongst this set? It seems that the most famous, practical trick you can do with a pool ball is missing? It gets even more confusing when they use the black-8 ball logo on the box cover three times, making you think the ball would be inside, when it is not. At first I thought it was missing, but after watching the DVD, have discovered it was not included. I saw them for sale on the Blackpool WGM stand, so I naturally presumed the most famous Pool ball trick in the world would be included in a Pool ball magic set, especially when they are both sold from the same dealers and manufactures.

Technical:
The DVD is nicely shot. Everything is clear and easy to follow. Craig has Max to perform on in the original performances, but his role as a ‘stooge’ becomes pretty obvious after the second trick when you say ask him to examine the same handkerchief that he only just examined the trick before. On the third time, it becomes comedic, and then you see him in the explanation portion of the DVD and all your suspicions are proven true. It means none of the performance part was actually authentic and was staged for the DVD. Don’t get me wrong, I’m sure most magic DVDs out there are like this, otherwise you would never get permission to use them on camera. But most of the others try to hide this fact by using different people.
The background is a wall of DVDs. It looks pretty and while not perfect, the lighting was quite clearly on our two performers and so didn’t hinder the look. However one DVD ‘Gone’ stood out like a sore thumb on the wall with its big text, and after a while, it was like playing ‘Where’s Wally’ trying to see how many Cradle to the Grave DVDs you had up there, and saying to yourself ‘I own that one!’
Sound was clear (but still a little quiet) but overall a good quality production and edit.

Duration: 71 minutes

The Presenter:
Craig is a great presenter. He is clear and easy to listen to. On this production, he has Max to talk to and demonstrate the routines on. This is extremely useful as you can actually see and follow along with Craig how to perform the trick. For those wanting to learn the effect, it make the entire process a one-watch procedure, something you can pick up very quickly without having to re-watch the same DVD multiple times just to understand what the presenter was trying to say. After just one viewing, I could perform several of the effects immediately. They only reason I could not perform them all is because there were so many to choose from, I forgot some of the ones near the start!

The good points:
The set comes with 4 Pool Balls which will enable you to perform a variety of effects. The card and gimmick will be useful and you can pick and choose which effect you like the most from the numerous offered for performance.
You can take the balls and use them in a variety of routines, including as loads for a chop cup, cups and balls, or jam jar trick. So having the props easily available can amplify several routines you probably already do.
There really is a mixture of effects and choice is the key selling point for this set. It is good for that reason and I’m sure many magicians will get a whole new act from this DVD set alone.

The ebook:
This is a 61 page ebook that can be opened via a computer. The book is pure text with no pictures what-so-ever. As an ebook, there is no reason why this is so. Pictures don’t take up any space. Almost all the tricks require the elusive Black-8 ball and props like Friction Pens and Drawstring bags. I can understand not including playing cards etc, but I come back to why there is no black-8 ball included in the set?
The book is clear and easy to read. The text is broken by titled paragraphs which makes it very easy to jump in and out of. It is the perfect book to have on an ipod and read on the train.
It is a great addition to the Pool Ball set and will be very helpful to the magicians who want additional ideas on effects they can do with Pool balls.

Conclusion:
I’m not sure what my conclusion is with this set. I want to like it. It looks so cool to produce Pool Balls and perform tricks with them but… I just can’t get excited enough to actually consider going out and performing the tricks presented.
What I will probably do is use the tricks as a baseline and come up with my own routines utilising the props it has given me. The Red-3 ball and its gimmicks defiantly inspire me to do something with them. I’m just not sure what.

It is a good release from Craig, and obviously a something he performs on a regular basis.

Overall, it was a good purchase. I already own the additional items you need and so it has given me what I needed to start performing tricks with Pool Balls.

Steve
Andi Peters
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Stephen

You're putting up some thoughtful reviews.

I too bought PBM at Blackpool and, like you, wondered why the 8 ball wasn't included.

However I already have one that I've used for routines by John Bannon, David Penn and Mark Southworth.

I think Craig has taken the thinking in a different direction and not just replicated what's out there by doing the obvious.

His pool ball through table was worth the price of the set imho.

Well done Craig again.
Doctor D
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Some quick thoughts:
- I simply asked Craig if the 8-ball was included. He said it wasn't, I asked to throw one in for me, and he did at no extra cost.
- The Pool Ball through table fooled me big the first time I saw it, and I am not afraid to admit that I'm ashamed of that, after seeing the gimmick (if you can call it that).
- I'm pretty sure that it was John Bannon who started the 8-ball production theme, not David Penn.
professorwhut
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Thank you for the review Steve,
This is first I have heard of this DVD.
I am interested in this, mainly because I am a fan of Craig Petty.
After much soul searching about a signature, I decided not to have one.

TG Pop [aka ProfessorWhut]
Craig Petty
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Again thanks for your great review Steve.

I have been very excited about this release for a long time. The whole concept is that it is a collection of routines with pool balls. It has become quite popular to produce a pool ball at the end of an effect. This DVD talks about other effects that you can perform with pool balls ranging from card effects, stand alone effects and more. I also talk about routining effects so that once you have produced the pool ball you go on to do something with it rather than putting it away. For example in one of the effects (ball through table) I teach you how to visually push a pool ball through a table.

There is an ebook included with 20 + routines as well as a DVD with a further 8 routines. We have tried to put pretty much everything you need in the box including all the relevant balls and gimmicks. I think that a lot of people will have fun with this set there is some great material. Many people have said the ball through the table is worth the price of the DVD alone.

If anyone has any questions about the product just let me know

Craig
Magic Rob
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Which number pool ball does the gimmick allow you to push through the table? I already perform a trick that produces a 3 ball and would like to use that one. Also would this effect work in a restaurant setting, say using the table that they are eating at? Or is that too close?
Thanks,
Rob
Cameron Francis
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Just watched this today and I have to say that this is a really nice set! I didn't know what to expect as I hadn't watched any trailers or read much about it. As always, Craig has put together some really nice moves and routines. Love the ball through table. Something I can really see myself performing.

Not sure what all of the fuss is about with the Eight Ball, though. There are no routines on the dvd which require it. I haven't looked at the ebook yet but the ebook is a bonus, yes? If it's all bonus material then I am not too upset that the props weren't included for it.
Alan Rorrison
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Im in the same boat. I always carry what is needed for the ball through table. Has a lovely moment where they think they see the ball melt right through

Quote:
On 2010-04-08 09:15, Cameron Francis wrote:
Craig has put together some really nice moves and routines. Love the ball through table. Something I can really see myself performing.

Not sure what all of the fuss is about with the Eight Ball, though. There are no routines on the dvd which require it. I haven't looked at the ebook yet but the ebook is a bonus, yes? If it's all bonus material then I am not too upset that the props weren't included for it.
Joe Mauro
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Quote:
On 2010-03-03 07:54, ku7uk3 wrote:


Conclusion:
...I’m not sure what my conclusion is with this set. I want to like it. It looks so cool to produce Pool Balls and perform tricks with them but… I just can’t get excited enough to actually consider going out and performing the tricks presented...



This 'conclusion' can probably bet said about the majority of the DVDS released these days. They are fun to watch, well produced, but you'll never actually learn the material ( even though some reviewers like to say "this goes right into my act tonight;-)

PLEASE do more reviews. With the flood of DVDS that hit the market, we need honest reviewers.
~Joe
Xcath1
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Why no trailer, seems unusual for such a novel project?
Craig Petty
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Hi Guys.

Sorry I haven't been on this thread for a while I have been on holiday in San Francisco for the last two weeks. Anyway I have been overwhelmed with the amount of emails I have received about this project - it seems to have caught the attention of a lot of people.

Firstly thanks Cameron and Alan for your comments I am really glad you are enjoying the set. I have spoken t Jim Trainer at World Magic Store and he says that the trailer for this should go live any day now. I will let you all know as soon as this happens. Have demoed this to a lot of magicians and got a great deal of feedback I can confidently say that the ball through the table has been the hit of the set. Although all the effects are great there is something about the slow motion penetration of a solid ball through a solid table that has to be seen to be believed. The best part is the routine instantly resets making it perfect for table hopping. I am so glad that Russell Leeds helped me put this project together - without him the b all through the table would not have even existed.

The idea behind the project is to give the purchaser dozens of ideas of what to do with a pool ball in a close up situation. There are many effects that have been published that involve a pool ball being produced as a kicker to a card routine (I have even published a couple on my Locked In a Room Without Coins DVD). This DVD will teach you how to take that ball and do other effects with it. I go into everything that you need to know - how to produce a ball, how to steal a ball and how to routine the effects together. Everything you need (including 4 balls) have been included in the package so you can get going straight away.

Finally many people have asked me what my favourite effect is on the DVD. That would have to be 'Pool Hall Matrix' which is a 'coin matrix' type effect but done with ink on the back of a business card which is signed by the spectator. The routine ends with the surprise production of a cue ball and the business card is then give to the spectator to keep. Once again the routine has an instant reset and is almost self working.

Thanks to everyone for your interest in this project and if you have any questions do not hesitate to ask.

Craig
Xcath1
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I look forward to the demo, please let us know when it is up
professorwhut
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The ebook contains tricks that use the eight ball.
I found some miniature pool balls online, I am going to order a set to have some extras.
After much soul searching about a signature, I decided not to have one.

TG Pop [aka ProfessorWhut]
mumford
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How long before someone tours a pool ball magic act at billiard halls?
Craig Petty
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Hi again Professor. As I mentioned on the Keymaster thread thanks for buying Pool Ball Miracles. Although there are routines in the book with a black 8 all these can also be done with a red three. Therefore you could just use the red three you recieved with your set instead or if you have a black 8 use that. Hope that helps!

As for doing an act in a pool hall I have actually held a residency in a pool bar which is where most of the material in this set was developed initially. I think if you are performing in a place where there is a pool table and you can perform pool related magic it seems more topical.

Craig
professorwhut
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I always liked the idea of performing magic in a pool hall, since they make great surfaces to work on.
After much soul searching about a signature, I decided not to have one.

TG Pop [aka ProfessorWhut]
Craig Petty
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Yeah they do, especially for card work.

Have you seen the mentalism DVD set released last year by Looch? There is a great prediction effect which uses a regular pool table. Is works well in conjunction with several of the routines from pool ball miracles.

Craig
Alan Rorrison
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Craig Petty
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The trailer looks great Alan thanks.

So the trailer for Pool Ball Miracles is now up which should give a lot of you guys that were after information more of an idea what the set is about.

If anyone has any other questions though just let me know!

Thanks again Alan - you the man

Craig
Review King
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That's a wonderful trailer. It clearly showed what the project is about and the magic looks fantastic.

Well done!

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

..........John Greenleaf Whittier
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