As with everthing with this blog of late, this review post has been sitting waiting to be done for a wee while. In fact, this review has been waiting since about March to be posted! Well, better late than never – I hope!
James Chadier is a new name to me. In fact, other than the contents of this DVD, I don’t really know much about this French performer. The DVD is, however, contains some really interesting ideas, moves and effects with an emphasis on very visual magic.
Produced, edited and directed by Mathieu Bich, creator of a number of phenominal effects, this DVD shows Chadier performing in cafes and bars in Paris for real people and then explaining the sleights and effects without the use of spoken word – some of the instructions are shown as on screen captions to clarify what is being seen. The explanations are concise and very clear.
Now, I’m not going to talk about every effect or move on this disk but I will mention a few of my highlights.
Initially, it looked like he had refined the mistake that a lot of us make when first learning to palm a card where it springs out of the hand. He has, in fact, come up with some very visual and startling effects. The stand outs for me were the force and the sandwich effects.
A very visual Coins Across/Shadow Coins type routine in the style of Dean Dill.
This could be described as a one band version of the Crazy Man’s Handcuffs and fooled me very badly.
As it says, an easy matrix to watch and understand using 4 coins, 2 hands a good bit of cheekiness. Even though this uses a move I am not a fan of, I liked it for its simplicity.
Bluff Pang Cheng
This was shown as an extra phase to the routine that uses the Squeeze Toss, a sleight also taught on the DVD, but I loved it due to it being extremely cheeky. It passed my by completely. Very clever.
Fingertip Ascanio Spread
A method of fanning the cards at your fingertips with the same qualities as the Ascanio Spread. An interesting little item that may warrent further investigation.
The Bonus Material on this DVD is both entertaining – in the form of some out-takes and funny moments from the filming of the DVD – and informative – by way of a number of extra ideas for the sleights that are taught in the main feature.
One innovation that deserves a mention is Mathieu Bich’s new “X-Ray View” during some of the explanation sequences. This is very helpful, especially while explaining the coin material on the disk.
I have very few real critisms about the DVD. There are a couple of things on the DVD that I was not convinced with in regards to their effectiveness. If I were to try them out, I may change that opinion. Also, with no verbal instruction, you really have to concentrate on what you’re watching to be able to take all the information in.
You can find a trailer for the DVD below and order it from this page of Mathieu Bich’s website.
The Cardman 🙂