By Laurie Coker
On opening night of SXSW 2013, I had to choose between the The Incredible Burt Wonderstone, the “big headliner” film at the Paramount and the promise of seeing Steve Carrell, Steve Buscemi, Olivia Wilde and Jim Carey, or an short outing over to a smaller SXSW venue for a screening of Josh Duhamel’s Scenic Route and a conversation with that star. I opted for the later, and am glad but was told later by colleagues that Burt Wonderstone turned out to be a decent comedy, with a fun cast. Now on Tuesday June 25, Warner Bros. brings us The Incredible Burt Wonderstone, in a Blu-Ray, DVD, Ultra-violet combo pack, just three months after its SXSW premier.
I watched the HD Blu-Ray versions with a friend and my grandson, and we all laughed and enjoyed it, except that is for the idiotic premise behind the act of Steve Gray (Carey), a new style magician who tortures himself with outlandish, gimmicky tricks (like holding his pee for days, sleeping 24 hours on a bed of hot coals, and making himself a human piñata). This craziness notwithstanding, the films’ pacing and premise (as asinine as it is) work, especially with this cast playing their roles with wonderful, comic seriousness. While Burt (Carrell) and his partner Anton (Buscemi) adhere to old-school magic and illusions, audiences are looking to the bizarre and not pure slight-of-hand prestidigitation. Wannabe magician and “beautiful assistant” Nicole/Jane (Wilde) watches as the
I can see where some might find this sort of trite, superficial comedy too silly, but I listened to my grandson giggle and that means a good deal to me. The Incredible Burt Wonderstone (rated PG-13 mainly for the above mentioned antics of Carey’s character) might have been better, but it really isn’t bad. I can easily place a B- in my grade book, if for nothing more than the pleasure of seeing this cast, including the late James Gandolfini (casino owner Doug Munny). It would positively make a great family night rental and is one of those innocuous enough comedies that just might just warrant the purchase prices for multiple viewings.
The Incredible Burt Wonderstone – Blu-ray Combo Pack
contains the following special features:
- Steve Grey Uncut – Raw, never before seen, daredevil performance by Steve Grey (Jim Carey)
- Deleted Scenes & Alternate Takes – Over 20 minutes of magically missing scenes with Steve Carrell and Jim Carey
- Making Movie Magic with David Copperfield – Master illusionist David Copperfield breaks the magicians code (just a tiny bit) to show how the hangman was created exclusively for the film
- Gag Reel – Incomparably conjured by Steve Carrell