Random I-Tunes Song of The Moment: What is Eternal by The Trans-Siberian Orchestra
One DVD, one set of stuff to make the gimmicks, $30 bucks and one Extortion Review. Is it gem or is it rubble? Stay tuned to find out.
Extortion Review: Effect
Two effects are taught. One is a bill transpo where you apparently put a $20 bill in the spectator's hand while you hold a $1 bill. Then your $1 instantly becomes a $20. They open their hands to find the $1. The other effect is just the simple visual change of the $1 to the $20.
Extortion Review: Method
The method relies 95% on the gimmick that you'll need to construct and 5% on your handling of the gimmick and/or any other bills in the routine. They give you everything you'll need to create the gimmick except for the glue and the actual money. You'll need to sacrifice some money. Let's say that you're making a gimmick that changes from $1 to $20. You'll need one $1 and two $20's. The $1 and one of the $20's will be destroyed. However, if you keep the parts that you don't use for the gimmick and someday want to have your $20 back, then you can take apart your gimmick and tape your money back together.
The gimmick is very simple to operate, and very clever. It creates a perfect illusion and will take you about 20 minutes to build it. To be clear, the gimmick consists of a full $20, part of another $20 and part of a $1. If you decide to do the transpo effect, you'll need another $1, which could be borrowed. If you want to hand out the bill after the change happens, you'll need to have a third $20 ready for a secret switch.
I'd say with just a little bit of practice, anyone can do this. Once you've mastered it, you can carry it in your wallet and be ready to go any time.
Extortion Review: Ad Copy Integrity
So . . . I'm going into this with an open mind. The video trailer does a good job of showing you exactly what the change looks like. The only part that's questionable is when they show the one dollar bill at about 8 seconds in and at about 12 seconds in. In both cases they are displaying a normal dollar bill in a way that you cannot display the gimmick that will turn into the $20. The dollar bill shown in those two moments is clearly and definitely a normal dollar bill.
Granted, there is a routine where you do pull a normal dollar bill out of your wallet just like that. However, due to the way they cut the trailer together, it felt like they were "saying" that the bill pulled out of the wallet is then changed into the $20. Nope . . . not until a switch is done. The switch is good, easy and happens in the spectator's hands. However, wanting to give them the benefit of the doubt, I assumed that they were not trying to mislead you.
Then along comes the written ad copy, and what happens . . . a lie. Every single thing stated in the written ad copy is 100% true, except for one thing. The bullet point that says, "Fully examinable" is a complete crock! They do teach a handling for secretly switching the gimmicked just-changed $20 for a real one, but if that's the case, then anything is "fully examinable" as long as you don't examine but switch it out.
Extortion Review: Product Quality
The DVD is very well produced, and Patrick Kun does a great job going into depth about how to build your gimmick. He also gives a lot of excellent pro tips along the way that let you know he really does perform this. The only head's up you'll need is this. Make sure you watch the section about creating the gimmick completely before building your gimmick. Once you watch it, then go back and re-watch it second time while building the gimmick during the second watching of the instructions. This will prevent you from making some mistakes while creating your gimmick.
Extortion Review: Final Thoughts
If it weren't for the fishy moment in the ad trailer, and the obviously false claim that it's fully examinable, this would be five stars. It's hard to give a final rating on this one. Do you support SansMinds, a company known for making fools of their customers by dishonest ad copy? The ad copy is 95% accurate. It's just that one claim. So if I give the ad copy 2 stars and everything else 5 stars, we're still left with a solid product. The change really is as clean and visual as the ad trailer shows.
4 Stars with a Stone Status of Gem.
Available at your Favorite Magic Dealer. Dealer's see Murphy's Magic for details.