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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Dvd, Video tape, Audio tape & Compact discs. » » Opening minds Colin Mcleod ----- WOW (1 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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cougar261084
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Hello it's not in my habit to write reviews, however for this set I will make a short exception.


Wow, just wow.

This DVD set is so full of workable and strong material. Anyone should get this as the price is unbelievably cheap.

It's been a while since I was this pleased with a purchase. I'm a hobbyist at the moment hoping to one day be a pro Smile.

Hence I think very carefully about my purchases since they don't immediatly pay themselves back. But this set is incredible

the first 4 volumes of osterlind were my number 1, but as of now they're tied with colin's set it really is that good.

Everything is simple, no huge preparations, STRONG AND SIMPLE

Buy this you will not regret it
Blindside785
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What would you say are your favorite effects or effects you see yourself performing?
Mind Guerrilla
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Like Cougar, I try to think carefully about my purchases. While I wouldn't call $65 "incredibly" cheap, I was pleased with this purchase. At first, though, I was concerned to see 16 effects stretched out over 4 discs. I feared this to be another over-priced, padded collection of B material. Thankfully, it's not. The first three discs deal with Mr. McLeod's stage work (ten effects). The fourth disc deals with his closeup repertoire (six effects).

Each performance/explanation is preceded by a discussion of the effect's background. I don't see why this couldn't just be incorporated into the explanation proper but no harm done. Mark Elsdon does a good job as interviewer and doesn't shy away from worst case scenarios. There are some good discussions to be found here, on subjects such as eq******* and d*** r******(and how it differs from i****** st******).

Mr. McLeod has an amiable persona and is resepectful of his audience. His strength as a creator is to take fundamentals and combine them into strong, bold routines. Joseph Dunninger and Kenton Knepper are both strong influences on him.

Not all of the effects are guaranteed to go over one hundred percent of the time. In fact, some have failure built in. I like this as it adds to the drama of a mentalism presentation. Mr. Elsdon gives some refreshingly direct advice when he says, at one point, "Go out and get burnt a bunch of times learning it. It's only a magic trick." Smile

DISC ONE
"Bookless Test"
is an opening effect and is very strong. I think it may be too strong. Then again, I don't agree with the conventional wisdom that a mentalism show should always start with a miracle. In this effect, a spectator is called onto the stage, asked to take an imaginary book off an imaginary shelf, turn to an imaginary page and think of a word. A prediction which has been in plain sight throughout is revealed to contain the chosen word (pre-printed, not handwritten).

"Quite Wordy"
is a book test using un-g***ed books. Mr. McLeod says this was inspired by Marc Paul's "AAA Book Test" (which I believe is, in turn, based on the work of Danny Tong) and consists of a bold peek.

"Take a Seat"
is Mr. McLeod's take on the chair test. He tries to address some of the flaws found in a lot of chair tests, e.g. convoluted instructions, too many reveals. He does succeed in producing a more direct presentation. While most of the explanations on this set are extremely thorough, here they only address one of three possible opening scenarios. A chair test explanation can be even more confusing than the effect so I can understand how this could have happened.

DISC TWO
"ANAAC"
stands for "Any Number And Any Card", Mr. McLeod's version of ACAAN. The combination of methods he uses includes one reminiscent of Derren Brown's "Invisible Deal". A great strength of this routine is that the performer never touches the cards.

"Who's Got The Money?" (Listed as "Who's Got My Money?" on the packaging):
is a two part routine. It begins as a lie detector test and ends as a serial number divination. It's an entertaining effect and involves five spectators. In divining one of the numbers, Mr. McLeod has a spectator go through some addition/subtraction. I don't think this really works, though, and it seems to violate Mr. McLeod's philosophy of always establishing some semblance of a premise before doing something.

"Make The ESP Cards Match"
There's something about ESP cards that put me to sleep so it's no surprise that this isn't my favorite effect on this set. Four spectators are asked to manipulate two piles of cards and when the smoke clears and cards are distributed, each spectator is found to hold a matching pair.

"Lottery"
Mr. McLeod declares this to be his favorite effect on this set. Everyone is entitled to their opinion. Smile In this routine, spectators ostensibly name the numbers on the performer's lottery ticket. The effect uses an old workhorse psychological force along with a presentation reminiscent of a well known mentalism card effect. This effect may not work one hundred percent each time but I think that only makes it more convincing and sets the stage for the followup effect...

DISC THREE
"Winning Numbers"
This is a companion piece to "Lottery" where the performer endeavors to divine the lottery numbers some spectators are thinking of. Mr. McLeod's approach here is quite bold, which some will view as its strength and some its weakness.

"In The News"
Al Koran and Derren Brown are among those who have famously used the plot of predicting a word on a scrap left over from a newspaper torn multiple times. Mr. McLeod gets the entire audience involved in this. Each spectator is given a sheet of newspaper and instructed by a spectator on stage on which piece to retain after each tear. This is his closer and is quite fun.

Disc Three also contains a clip of Mr. McLeod's Tabular Mentis lecture. Unfortunately, it doesn't really cover any ground not already covered elsewhere on this set. In fact, a portion of the lecture is also shown during the explanation section of the "Lottery" effect.

DISC FOUR (Closeup Repertoire):
"The Result" (Listed as "Albertest" on the packaging)
This is Mr. McLeod's version of the TA Waters effect, "Albertest" (This can be found in "Mind, Myth & Magick" and "New Invocation", No. 54; December 1989). There's a significant production error here: The performance part of this effect is missing, with two or three minutes of blank screen in its place. Fortunately, the missing footage has been uploaded to YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0uJIBUufAVw This type of effect is not really my cup of tea as it contains too many manipulations but it should be up a lot of people's alleys.

"Double Thought Card Projection"
This is a "You-Think-of-My-Card-I'll-Think-of-Yours" routine. The method is extremely basic and is not likely to fool magicians..but who cares about them? Smile

"Kolintrol"
is inspired by the work of Kenton Knepper and takes the form of a bet on which of five items a specator will choose. It's cute.

"Serial Prevaricator"
is similar to "Who's Got The Money?" in that it is a lie detector followed by a serial number divination. The presentation and methodolgy differ, though, and only two spectators are used. Again Mr. McLeod employs his add/subtract procedure here which is unnecessary imo.

"Bolder Business"
is a simple, direct drawing duplication based on Patrik Kuffs' "Bold Business"(on his MIND STUNTS DVD).

"Furtive Switch"
is a telepathy routine based around a b***** switch developed by Mr. McLeod. If you're into such switches, you should find this interesting.

Despite the couple of quibbles I mentioned, I wouldn't hesitate to recommend this set.
cpbartak
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I loved this set. I predict that a certain little magic gimmick that is underused in mentalism will start to be purchased by many mentalists soon.
Some people hear voices.. Some see invisible people.. Others have no imagination whatsoever.
afknight
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Thanks for the great review Mind Guerilla. I just received my copy in the mail today and hope to get into the material over the weekend!
revelation77
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I pre-ordered this from Colin's site and it hasn't quite made its way to me yet but I'm really looking forward to it.
Peter Nardi
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Hi Mind Guerilla,

I've just watched the chair routine again and it's explained perfectly. Including what to do if you are not left in the perfect position?

Regards

Peter
Peter Nardi
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Hi Mind Guerilla,

I've just watched the chair routine again and it's explained perfectly. Including what to do if you are not left in the perfect position?

Regards

Peter
S.WARD
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I love this set and I can see myself using a lot of this material in the several shows I currently perform. The quality of camera work is the high standard you would expect from a RSVP & Alakazam production. The explanations are very clear and detailed. I really like bookless test and will be doing that in my cabaret / stage show. Well done to all involved as it is a great product that any mentalist should own. A real master class in quality...
Mind Guerrilla
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Quote:
On 2010-10-22 04:47, Peter Nardi wrote:
Hi Mind Guerilla,

I've just watched the chair routine again and it's explained perfectly. Including what to do if you are not left in the perfect position?

Regards

Peter

As far as I recall (and I've watched it at least three times), some time is spent discussing what to do if the spectator says "1" or "4" instead of "2" or "3" but only in the case where the envelopes are returned with Colin's envelope third from the top (referred to as the ideal situation).

They never go back to talk about the other possible three initial scenarios (i.e. Colin's envelope is returned on top of the shuffled pile, on the bottom, or second from the top).

If I'm mistaken, and these three other situations are indeed mentioned, I apologize but I would like to know at what point in the explanantion this occurs. Thanks.
cpbartak
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What happened with the albertest performance being left off? it's a shame because this is such an awesome set otherwise.
Some people hear voices.. Some see invisible people.. Others have no imagination whatsoever.
deputy
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Just watched a couple of the discs off this set. There is really killer mateial on here.
Mind Guerrilla
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Quote:
On 2010-10-22 09:56, cpbartak wrote:
What happened with the albertest performance being left off? it's a shame because this is such an awesome set otherwise.

It's to separate those reviewers who've watched the discs from those who have not. Smile

I don't think it's that big a deal. A) It's on YouTube B) You can piece it together yourself by watching the explanation.
Colin
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C) it's on there during my lecture anyway Smile
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Cameron Francis
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I have to say, this set really intrigues me. Might have to check it out!
Colin
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Thanks to everyone for all the amazing feedback I'm getting here and on the old private messages! It truly means a lot that you guys are getting a lot of them!! To be honest, that's the reason I enjoy sharing my work with you.

Col
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ElliottB
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I ordered this right away and received it yesterday. Based on what I’ve heard, I suspect it will be quite awesome, and I cannot wait to watch it.
ElliottB
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I just watched the Furtive Switch Routine. The switch was cool. Regarding the routine, I am assuming Colin missed "The Pusillanimous Billet Read" (and "A Test of Power Revisited" - which was partiallly based on Jeff's PBR) in his copy of Switchcraft, and that he came up with it independently.
poonchingyip
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Anyone can review his "ANAAC"?? Is it possible to work in real life?
Colin
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Lol... "real life" . I do it on stage, can be done close up with the omission of one technique abd switching the other two!

Col
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