The incredible Burt Wonderstone

I remember having the chance to go see The Incredible Burt Wonderstone (2013) in the theater, but I never made it.  Not sure what was going on, probably I had a busy period of work to get through.  I remember seeing the trailer, and getting the sense that there were some popular actors playing magicians and there was some competition involved, so I really wanted to see it.

I did appreciate the costumes and many of the magic acts.  They played through more magic acts than I’d dared to hope for, so I enjoyed that.  Steve Carrell and Steve Buscemi play a pair of magicians (Burt and Anton) that have been working together since they were kids.  Over time, they came to be the headlining act at one of the Vegas hotels.  Generally speaking, such a thing in real life is a big deal, for people in the entertainment industry, playing a Vegas hotel becomes a cash cow of sorts.  It generates consistent revenues year-round, and is highly preferable to the physical and mental stresses of constant nationwide touring.

In that type of role, however, they become a complacent act.  Burt’s ego has been growing as much as his various appetites.  Eventually, people tire of the old-fashioned act they have to offer…and the people are drawn to the new edgy, more “physical magic” act of street magician Steve Grey (played by Jim Carrey).  Burt and Anton end up breaking up their relationship and go their separate ways.  The plot quickly moves to Burt trying to remember and relearn what drew him to magic in the first place.  To this end, Alan Arkin does a good job as Rance Holloway, the magician that inspired Burt to take up magic in the first place.

Overall, not a great movie, probably not even a good movie.  There are a few funny parts, and it’s definitely a chance to see some of your favorite comedians doing their thing.  I did like the magic acts.

The Incredible Burt Wonderstone (2013)
The Incredible Burt Wonderstone poster Rating: 5.9/10 (54,343 votes)
Director: Don Scardino
Writer: Jonathan M. Goldstein (screenplay), John Francis Daley (screenplay), Chad Kultgen (story), Tyler Mitchell (story), Jonathan M. Goldstein (story), John Francis Daley (story)
Stars: Steve Carell, Steve Buscemi, Olivia Wilde, Jim Carrey
Runtime: 100 min
Rated: N/A
Genre: Comedy, Romance
Released: 2013-03-15
Plot: A veteran Vegas magician tries to revive his career after his longtime partner quits, he gets fired from his casino act, and an edgy new "street magician" steals his thunder.