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Menu of Miracles III - The Main Course by James Prince & RSVP - DVD
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'If Close-up Magic or Restaurant work are your forte, you cannot go wrong with James Prince's DVDs. He's served up pure gold"
- Review in Magic - December 2008

Contents include:

Roaming Card
A totally impromptu card across - any deck, any time, any where! Eliminates the problems associated with other impromptu versions

The Bullet Concept
Have a hole appear in a freely selected, SIGNED card This is not a stand alone effect; it is a discovery that can be applied to your own presentations James Prince has worked with this, in the field for years. From now on so can you! Three presentations included on the DVD:

  • Shot to the heart: A freely selected card is signed and placed back inside the deck. The magician takes an invisible gun from his jacket and asks the spectator to fire at the cards that he's holding. The magician now says that the card has been shot out of the deck and through into his breast pocket. To prove it, the magician cleanly, with no palming, reaches inside and takes their SIGNED card out complete with bullet hole!
  • Card on Ceiling: A card is freely selected and placed back inside the deck. Once again the magician asks the spectator to hold and invisible gun and to fire it as he throws the deck into the air. On the count of three, the cards are tossed high into the air hitting the ceiling above, leaving one card stuck to the ceiling as the rest of the deck fall to the floor. Looking up, they see that not only is it the SIGNED card, but it also now has a bullet hole right thru it!
  • Target Practice: A card is freely chosen and shuffled back into the deck. The cards are now placed into their box as the magician removes a target from his pocket. Sticking the card case to the target, the spectator is asked to fire an invisible gun at the card box as the magician holds it up, attached to the target. Suddenly the card case drops to the floor leaving their SIGNED card stuck to the target complete with a bullet hole right thru it!
Ready Teddy Go!
A finger ring is borrowed from a spectator. Suddenly the ring vanishes from the magicians hands. It's found attached to a cute little teddy bear key ring.
So what's new - check this out
The Spectator removes the key ring from your pocket The Spectator can freely handle the bear The Spectator can remove their ring from the clip

Coin Kebab
A real worker! Spectator chooses a coin to give to the performer A hole drawn on each side with a sharpie A kebab stick is pushed through the 'hole' The coin and stick can be handed out or given to the spectator to keep or the stick removed and the coin returned intact

Strike Three!
Routine with three mini baseballs
They travel from hand to hand, vanish, return and finally one morphs into a solid crystal ball! Ala Vernon, Marlo, Roth but with some little touches of my own

Bleached Deck
One card is fairly selected
All the cards turn blank
The selection is found in the pocket
No faked cards
All can be examined at end

The JP Jennings Wallet
Adapt a Jennings to enable effortless loading time after time Not just cards - Necklaces, rings, mobiles loaded instantly As easy as dropping something into a glass

Pepper Pot strikes again
James's classic borrowed ring to tabled Pepper Pot is revisited with a significant upgrade

The JP/Erdnase DPS
Following numerous requests a more detailed teach in of James' variation to the classic Erdnase DPS

Plus bonus hints and tips covering correct table positioning and creativity.


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Pro Privacy ON (login to see reviewer names) on April 2nd, 2010
This was filmed live in a real restaurant with real audience members at a restaurant that Mr. Prince actually works at every week. I really like this aspect of the DVD. It was a little noisy at times, but nothing too bad. The navigation and menu, etc. was all just fine. All in all, the production quality was an 8 on a scale from 1 to 10. In volumes I and II, during the explanations they would show flash backs to the performance segments. I think that aided greatly in the learning of the effects. In this volume, however, I don't recall that happening.

One other nit-picky thing . . . in Volume I, he said that you should never work on Thursday's, yet he opens this DVD by saying that this is one of his regular restaurants that he works every Thursday.

Anyway, on to the effects . . .

The Bleached Deck (4/5) - Speaking of Mr. Princes Technical skill, he is definitely good at executing the Erdnase Diagonal Palm Shift. He's very good at it and uses it in almost every trick. This one is no exception. The effect here is very good and very clean, but still his presentations are very bland and have no interaction with the audience and are way too fast to the point of confusion. I will say that the selection process used here is extremely clever. One little thing that bugged me during the explanation: Somewhere in his monologue, he says something along the lines of "that won't be a problem because of the corner clipping." What corner clipping? He never mentioned anything about a corner clipping (I'm assuming he means a corner-short card), so I have no idea how it's used in the routine, where it's used and how it helps the effect.

Ready, Teddy, Go! (4/5) - A variation of Ring Flight which is very clever, and the best part is that the final place that the ring ends up is examinable and handle-able by the audience. You will have to modify your clothing, but it's probably worth it. Again, however, with his personality . . . he is so focused on delivering his script (I use that term verrrrrrrrrrry loosely) that he pretty much ignores and talks over the audience. He did it again in this routine when the girl was explaining how here mood ring worked.

J.P. Jennings Wallet (5/5) - Fastest load in the west! This is a very cool way to modify your Jennings Wallet. You also get a little bit better personality from Mr. Prince on this one. Also, this load technique allows you to load some pretty darn big items into a "sealed" envelope inside of your wallet. If you do any "to-wallet" stuff, especially if you use the Jennings Wallet this section (with all of the tips and ideas for the Jennings Wallet is very much worth your attention.

Strike Three (3/5) - There was a bit more interaction at the beginning with the spectator, but it quickly vanished. He suddenly went into robot mode again. However, there are some really nice moves taught in this section. He fooled me with a super clever vanish - an adaptation of the Vernon Wand Spin vanish that ends with both hands empty. Again, however, there was a lot of just mindless mumbling while he executes moves for himself without engaging the audience at all.

The Roaming Card (4/5) - The effect is quite clever and to Mr. Prince's credit, during the performance, the audience member screwed up, and he recovered nicely. It's a pretty straight forward cards across routine. The effect is that a spectator thinks of a card from one packet. It vanishes and appears in the other packet at a position named by the spectator. It's pretty darn sneaky and pretty easy to do.

The Bullet Concept Part I (3/5) - This is a concept that he shows three applications for. Others have played with this concept. I have, Paul Wilson has, and there's someone else whom I cannot seem to remember, and I can't find it. It's in one of my videos somewhere. If I find it, I'll come back and edit this review. The concept is clever. The performance of it was a bit fidgety and sort of a weak effect, but it has a lot of potential.

The Bullet Concept Part II (2/5) - This is another effect using the Bullet Concept. It's kind of a fun idea, but too fidgety. Also, I really don't like it when he immediately palms out the card and immediately goes right to his pocket to pull it out and then dismisses it. He does this a lot, and it's very not-smooth and clunky and not magical at all. Although Mr. Prince has a lot of experience and it a good technician, he could use a lesson or two in timing, pacing, rhythm, etc. Again, this is clever cutesy kind of trick, but it was way too fidgety.

The Bullet Concept version 3 (3.5/5) - I found it funny that the first two were called "Part I" and "Part II," but the third one was called "Version 3." That aside, this is a nice addition to card on ceiling, however, I don't like the immediate card to pocket thing as I've mentioned. He just throws it in there and again, his presentation was anything but coherent or even personable. He was just sort of going through the motions so that he could finally get through the journey, which he didn't seem to enjoy. Also, during the explanation, he really doesn't teach you how to do card on ceiling. He just kind of grazes a few bullet points and recommends you get Ammar's stuff to learn how to do the effect.

Coin Kebab (4/5) - This is very sneaky . . . wooden kabob skewer through borrowed coin. He gives some very clever tips and techniques, plus a really sneaky tip/idea/line of patter that really improves the illusion if your audience member happens to have a foreign coin (which is pretty common where he performs).

The Pepper Pot Strikes Again (4/5) - This isn't a complete routine, but rather a modification of one of the versions from Volume I. So if you don't have Volume I, this part of the DVD is useless. However, if you do have Volume I, then this is one of the more valuable parts of this DVD.

Some Final Thoughts:
Like the first 2 volumes, there are some advice segments on this volume. He gives some pretty worthwhile pointers on various different scenarios you might encounter when approaching a table as well as some good opening tricks, where to stand at the table, how to orient yourself in reference to the table and the spectators . . . a lot of good ideas here.

Minor nitpick: In all three volumes, he kept looking at the monitor and wouldn't keep his eyes on the camera. It was very distracting to watch this during the explanation sections.

If you've read all three of my reviews on Mr. Prince's work, you might think I don't like him or was mean, etc. However, the truth is, from what I can tell he is a very knowledgeable magician, an excellent technician and a really nice guy. He's also a creative thinker and has some really great ideas. The main criticism I have of his work is that he performs way too fast and way too "rambly" and basically ignores his spectators. It's a very common thing that magicians do. I've struggled with it myself over the years.

Regardless of his performing style, there are some good ideas on all three of these DVDs. This one in particular, the tricks average a rating of 3.65. However, considering that the asking prices is $45.00 and you don't get that much material and you get a few places where you have to learn the effect from another source, I'm rating this as a solid 3 out of 5. Thus . . . gem.
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Pro Privacy ON (login to see reviewer names) on April 6th, 2010
James' Pepper Pot strikes again effect is one of my favourite tricks- a borrowed finger ring disappears and re-appears in a pepper pot which was on the table. I must admit, the effect doesn't play out quite so neatly as that but it is a very strong effect. However you will need gimmicks to make this prop and it was a shame they were not included.
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