Flood of DVD's - and therein lies the problem

A place where beginners can participate, ask questions, and post their views. However, beginners typically ask a lot of questions about sources, tricks, books, and so on. In fact, all magicians are interested (or should be) in the provenance of tricks, ideas, and related matters. This department will service these needs.

Postby nornando » 06/21/08 07:55 PM

This may not be the right place for this but here's one man's DVD dilemma. I find a complex routine I want to study that's on a DVD and, rather than endlessly replaying (which tends to cause me to mimic the exact routine as performed - removing all thought of inserting a presentation that is me) I will laboriously write the thing out and use that to get moves and sequence. I realize we're in the audio/visual age but golly gee, some things still deserve print.
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Postby Jeremy Greystoke » 06/22/08 04:36 PM

You're not alone. I remember sitting in front of the TV armed with a pad of paper, a pen, and the remote control, and taking copious notes on Harlan's Slomoco Aces (Premium Blend, Vol. 2 DVD) to be able to sit and compare/contrast his approach with several different technicolor ace assemblies. I think a neat idea for some magic DVDs would be to have some printable PDF files on them that would contain a written (and terse) outline of at least some of the effects...at least those that had a significant number of steps. I know there are a number of books which contain brief outlines of the handling of the effect after the main explanation is given, and it would be nice to have that added to some teaching DVDs.

Anyone aware of any DVDs that have actually tried that little value-added feature? I'm aware of the "Super Practice Session" over-the shoulder technique used on some of the Michael Ammar and Michael Close DVDs, but I'm not aware of any providing handling outlines via printable PDF files.

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Postby Mark Ratekin » 06/22/08 05:27 PM

Michael Ammar included summarized instructions in the second round of the Easy To Master Card Miracles set (vols 4-6, if memory serves) in VHS; I'm not certain if the instructions made the translation to DVD.

John Bannon's recent "Fractal Card Magic" card series includes a PDF of detailed instructions. While these are "one-trick" DVD's (see a separate thread on the discussion of the merits of the one-trick DVD), the value proposition, IMHO, is quite high - the routines are well thought out, there is generally at least one bonus effect, and the PDF of the instructions is a nice touch. All this, and they retail for less than $15.

Tx -

Mark Ratekin
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Postby Bill Palmer » 07/13/08 08:29 PM

I've seen a couple of DVD's that had printable PDF's. I'm all for them. Many of the DVD's I am asked to review are pure crap.

Too many of them have no production values. And they seem to be badly organized.
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Postby Brian Morton » 07/14/08 05:41 PM

Jeremy Greystoke wrote:...but I'm not aware of any providing handling outlines via printable PDF files.


One of the best DVD's that I've seen combining video routining and printabe .PDFs is Whit Haydn and the School for Scoundrels' Three Shell Game DVD. If you printed out and had spiral bound (as I did) all the .PDFs, you would receive a text that was equal to or larger than the book the SfS put out on the Three Card Monte, complete with historical background, older published works, and photographic essays on the shell game as it exists all around the world to this day. And all of it for a price that would be doubled if you bought a separate text.

brian :cool:
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