Tag Archives: rick carruth

ONLY SLIGHTLY SLEIGHTLY – A Review

ONLY SLIGHTLY SLEIGHTLY – DVD
$26.95
Murphy’s Magic

Ryan Schultz is a creator of card tricks. Not just card tricks.. but tricks that require a minimum of sleights. This is much easier said than done. Unfortunately, many simple card tricks are obviously simple card tricks, and fail to fool even the uninformed spectator who has never seen a Youtube video.. The standard for ‘self working’ card tricks has changed, and Ryan is one of the performers at the very forefront. Today, there is a huge market for sleight-free card magic, or something very close to it, and Ryan has published two prior DVD’s paving the way for his latest. ‘Miracles Without Moves’ and ‘Effortless Effects’, his earlier DVD’s were both best sellers.

So much has to happen to make a simple trick appear complex. Patter isn’t enough, and math won’t carry you over the threshold. It takes a combination of complexity and psychology, particularly handling by the spectator to alleviate the possibility of sleight of hand. Ryan covers all the basis. Everything on Only Slightly Sleightly is designed to happen, to an extent, in the spectators hand or as a result of a decision by the spectator. All the psychological moves are there too, to convince the spectator(s) all is fair.

I feel if you are a fan of simpler magic, and if you want several effects that simultaneously tic every box and entertain your audience… ‘Only Slightly Sleightly’ will do just that. In all fairness, these are NOT instant effects. You WILL have to put forth a little time and effort to learn the handling of all the effects. Thankfully, the ‘handling’ doesn’t involve busted knuckles and endless hours of practice.

To quote Murphy’s Magic:

“The focus of the tricks on Only Slightly Sleighty is giving your audience the feeling that THEY have control of everything. Ryan has honed and refined these routines with the implicit target of making the audience feel like they have made every decision. Because if THEY made decisions, then the tricks truly ARE magic! It’s a masterclass in audience control and relaxed misdirection. You’ll have a lot of fun performing these routines, and you WILL fool people!”

Features:

Future Card – A card is fairly selected and placed in the case.. a business card and 2 selections reveal the identity of this card.. Everything seems very fair and perplexing.

Shuffles Therapy – Ryan provides two versions of this effect, a gaffed card version and a borrowed deck version.. A spectators card is found in a random way

Long Way Out – Ryan teaches a Derrick Dingle move that makes the magic possible .. I really like this move, and intend to spend ample time learning and perfecting.

Any Card To Any Sum – All the cards in one pile total the sum of cards in another pile.. plus a revelation. There are no moves to achieve the magic. Maybe my favorite effect on the DVD..

Magic Camp – Three spectators each find a preselected card after a complex series of deals and shuffles. A very good display of discovery..

We Do As We Do – This is a ‘do as I do’ effect where each participant finds the other’s card.

Plus, a very useful bonus section on how to use Pencil Dots and Edge Marking to expand your skillset and add a very special tool to your magical armory…

I recommend ‘Only Slightly Sleightly’ if you tend to favor self working magic. This DVD is available through dealers who carry the Murphy’s Magic line of magic DVD’s and effects…

http://www.murphysmagic.com/product.aspx?id=59203

Review by Rick Carruth

TAC-TIC-AL – A Review

The MagicWorld Creative Team has introduced an effect perfect as an opener or an ice breaker. Either a miniature deck of cards -or- a box of Tic Tack mints can be displayed.. and with a toss from one hand to the other, transformed into a full sized deck of cards.

The change is sudden.. and there are no wires, pulls, reels or lapping used to complete the transformation. The item is displayed in one hand, and with a simple toss to the other hand, changes into the Bicycles. The magic happens before the spectator has time to realize you’re about to fool them badly…

I like the idea of using TAC-TIC-AL as an opener because of its sudden action. It’s easy to gage from the response whether you’re in the presence of friends or foes. Lets face it.. not every spectator responds positively to your performance or your offer to perform. TAC-TIC-AL allows you to determine with a glance whether you should continue or politely move on. This in itself makes it a valuable tool in your arsenal.

TAC-TIC-AL uses a gimmick, supplied, that makes the magic possible. Actually, two gimmicks are supplied.. based on whether you want to transform the mints or the miniature deck. You will need to furnish your own deck of red or blue Bicycles, which shouldn’t be a problem. You will also need a small amount of invisible thread, furnished, to make the gimmick functional. The thread is NOT attached to your body, but is only needed in a completely self-working fashion, explained in the video. I’m not a big fan of thread in my performances.. but the use of thread in this performance is both innocuous and innocent.

The teaching method is via video.. and the link and password are supplied. The video runs about 21 minutes and is posted online. There’s nothing to download.. which is a pet peeve of mine when I DO have to download an instructional video. The sound and lighting are both very functional. There are windows behind the team and, as they are recording at night, car lights are an annoyance.. but not to the point where it would affect my ability to learn. There are also two different camera angles, which add a nice variety.

You are taught several different variations of TAC-TIC-AL. There are different ways of ‘tossing’ the deck to complete the transformation. Once the basic initial setup is complete, which should take a couple of minutes, you are good to go. I can see the typical beginner learning all the necessary handling in minutes. Although it’s not actually self-working, it’s very close, with a minimum of effort on your part.

My only problem with TAC-TIC-AL is, like many transformations, it’s angle sensitive. It’s not something you’re going to perform for a room full of people.. although there is an alternative handling that ‘almost’ takes care of this shortcoming. The angle isn’t a big problem because the spectator doesn’t know what’s coming. You can approach a spectator, or three, and ‘tacticalize’ them before they have time to ‘analyze’ you.

If you’re into close up, walk around and table hopping I would recommend TAC-TIC-AL. It’s a great little ice breaker that garners your spectators immediate attention and opens the door for your other effects. Again, it’s one of many tools that working magicians should carry in their toolbox.

Available at all magic retailers that carry the Murphy’s Magic line of products..  $29.95
(Available with Red or Blue Bicycle backs)

www.murphysmagic.com/product.aspx?id=59248

(Review by Rick Carruth)

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OPUS ( Mona Lisa ) by Nefesch – A Review

Opus (Mona Lisa) by Nefesch
Murphy’s Magic
$24.95

Opus (Mona Lisa) by Nefesch is a coincidence type effect, or, a prediction effect.. depending on your spectator. To clear this up.. there are two possible endings; one allows the spectator to recreate a masterpiece.. the other allows the spectator to create a ‘jumble’ of cards that perfectly match a picture of a ‘jumble of cards’ you placed on the table before the effect began..

The spectator is handed four black credit card sized cards. You tell the spectator that the face of the cards contain a picture that will take on a significance at the end of the effect. The spectator is asked to mix the cards thoroughly. He is asks to change the orientation of some of the cards if he wishes. Finally, the spectator is asks to lay the four cards on the table to form a square.
Everything is left to the discretion of the spectator.

Yet, when the pieces are turned.. all four form a perfect recreation of a picture of the iconic Mona Lisa!

This is quite the coincidence, considering all the decisions were a result of the spectator. There is a possibility the cards will form a totally unrelated picture.. with half a head in the top row and the second half in the bottom row.. But when all looks lost, the magi asks the SPECTATOR to remove the one card in an envelope on the table.. (from the beginning).. and it is found to be a perfect image of the jumbled picture created by the spectator.

OPUS comes with five credit size cards.. four are the required four pieces to form the painting of the Mona Lisa. The fifth card is a picture of the jumbled face of the Mona Lisa. Nothing else is needed. Unlike effects with multiple out, OPUS has only one possible out aside from the forming of a perfect picture.. and that out is in plain view the entire time.

I like that the spectator does all the work. I like that the spectator discloses the only other out, if necessary. Of course, the spectator doesn’t realize the out is an out… he assumes it was your intention from the beginning. In the event the completed face of the Mona Lisa is the outcome, the out is never mentioned.. and the spectator is left with a perplexing coincidence.

OPUS will require a little work on your part, memory wise.. I don’t think I’m revealing too much when I mention the position of the cards on the table are known by the magi before they’re turned. The final position of the cards is NOT totally under the control of the spectator.. but I’m sure you’ve figured that out. The question is – does the spectator THINK the final position is his. And the answer is.. Yes. (I wish there were such a thing as true magic.. but I’ve discovered ‘true magic’ needs a little help from time to time.)

I like this… I can definitely see myself performing this during walk arounds. It’s a little magic.. and a little mental.. It’s also something that you can perform almost effortlessly once you grasp the orientation of the cards. There is NO math.. just an understanding of whether you are creating a coincidence or a prediction once the cards are positioned by the spectator.

At a little over 50 minutes, the online instructions are thorough. I had to watch it twice to get a good grasp of my part in the miracle, but that’s to be expected. Watching it twice to learn an effect I’ll actually use is NOT a big deal. There is another learning curve once the basics are understood, and it involves a minor sleight… but it’s just that… minor..

If you like this type of mental magic, I would definitely recommend OPUS go on your ‘to get’ list. Or better yet.. just forget the list and buy it now. That way, you can be performing it next week and getting the kind of responses that make magic so important to us…

Available from dealers who carry the Murphy’s Magic line of quality products…

Watch a video performance at:

http://www.murphysmagic.com/Product.aspx?id=57165