I have seen film number five for the film challenge. It was The Incredible Burt Wonderstone, starring Steve Carell, Steve Buscemi, and Jim Carrey.
Burt, played by Steve Carell, and Anton, played by Steve Buscemi, have been best friends and magic partners since they were children. They grew up to be magic partners on the Las Vegas strip, playing to packed houses with their magic show and raking in millions for Doug, playing by James Garofilino, at his casino. Burt’s ego is also growing and he spends lavishly and is becoming jaded and bored. A new up-and-comer, Steve Gray, played by Jim Carrey, a “magician” who has a web-based show who cuts himself and lays on hot coals and wows audiences with gruesome tricks, is quickly stealing people from the tame magic that Burt and Anton offer. Doug tells Burt and Anton to start coming up with new tricks to start bringing in more people, younger people. They come up with The Hot Box, a plexiglass box suspended outside the casino where they will spend a week in the hot Las Vegas sun. Burt freaks out after only fifteen minutes in the box and breaks out the sides, sending Anton crashing to the street and breaking his ankles. Burt continues the show without Anton but uses the same tricks which don’t work without Anton. Doug fires him and he has no money.
Burt resorts to working a magic show at Big Lots and an old folks home. There he finds an old magician whose magic kit had inspired him to take up magic when he was a child. Together Burt and Rance Holloway explore what magic really is all about. Doug asks Burt to perform at his son’s tenth birthday party because the son really likes Burt’s magic. Burt and Rance work up a show for the party but Rance doesn’t show up. He has had a stroke, but Burt conjures up a puppy for the boy. Steve Gray is also there and makes the puppy disappear but then brings a puppy back. The original puppy reappears in Burt’s pants. Burt resolves to appear with his magic with Anton and Rance and their assistant Jane in the showcase for Doug’s new casino against Steve Gray. They will do the disappearing audience trick.
How they prepare for the trick and how they work together again and rediscover the magic of magic, renew and reinvigorate their act and beat Steve Gray and his gruesome “magic” which isn’t magic but self mutilation is the basis for the end of the movie.
This is a funny funny. Steve Carell is at his funny best as the egotistical Burt who finally is put in his place, and eventually gets the girl, but only after he realizes what an ass he’s been. He does reconcile with his best friend and partner and makes friends with his first mentor, Rance Holloway, and discovers his first love magic all over again.