(DVD and gimmicks) by Titanas $35.00
Running time: 22 minutes
Available at: http://paulharrispresents.webs.com/apps ... how/834236
Dealers contact Murphys Magic Supplies, Inc. (916) 853-9292
Achtung, geeks! In this morsel of masochistic magic, the performer grips the first joint of his finger and twists it around a full 180 degrees. After twisting the joint back into proper alignment, both of his hands are clean. Click on the link above to view a demonstration video.
This is a home-made DVD with meager production values. Titanas does an adequate job of teaching the material. The format switches back and forth between Titanas speaking directly to the camera, and silent footage of his hands accompanied by on-screen text.
Four gimmicks of various sizes are included with the DVD. These allow any size of finger to be used to create the effect.
In what appears to be a web cam segment, Ben Harris discusses how creating a crunching or cracking sound heightens the effect. I agree. He teaches a clever, device-free way of generating the grisly sound.
Titanas describes several other well known ways of producing the creepy sound. Because they require the use of additional objects, I prefer Mr. Harriss method.
Titanas teaches an impromptu method of creating the illusion that utilizes a common magicians tool. Unfortunately, the resultant illusion looks terrible. Since the supplied gimmick can be unobtrusively carried with you at all times, I dont understand why he bothered with this version.
He discusses the use of make-up, which is worse than unnecessary.
He doesnt provide any patter or presentation for the effect. He states that he performs the effect silently because, The more silent I am, the more Wow theyre going to be.
Now theres a compelling rationalization!
Titanas states that the illusion may not look convincing the first few times you try it. He encourages us to continue practicing and performing the effect, assuring us that the effect will eventually look realistic.
I practiced this effect for a week in front of a mirror, using different fingers, lighting conditions and distances. When I got the illusion to look as realistic as possible, I performed it for my wife.
She was not amazed. She was curious about how I produced the sound effect, and she wondered how I momentarily caused my finger to look weird. But she was not amazed. I assumed that she was jaded or cranky.
I practiced the effect some more and over the next few days I performed it for four more people. The results were the same. No one believed that they were seeing my fingernail.
Part of the problem is the design of the gimmick. For reasons that I dare not elaborate upon, it simply doesnt create the illusion of a realistic fingernail.
And maybe Im part of the problem. Perhaps Im anatomically incorrect or digitally defective, but the texture and coloration of the fingernail just dont look normal. My meat simply wont permit the creation of a realistic illusion. Imagine my shame.
Considering the limited production values and the questionable design of the gimmicks, I believe that this product is overpriced. $25.00 is a more reasonable price tag, provided that you can actually produce an effective illusion.