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Metal Eclipse Review

February 6th, 2014 1:00am
Reviewed by Dr. J. M. Ayala de Cedoz
It is not often that I start reviews off with a commentary - but this one requires it.

It is very hard to describe this DVD, so much so that I had to consult a friend of mine in France that is familiar with Tristan Mory to help. What he said led me to this description for the DVD:

A French Country meets Urban Traveller meets urban nomad meets grunge(y) metal-ish documentary-esque video. Tristan displays what some would consider strange behavior and a character that reminds you of an accidental street-clothed silent clown - not dirty but content and somehow, maybe, disturbed but not necessarily in a bad way.

To explain what I just said in the best way I can: Cram all of the above and make it into an artistic video. He walks the country highway and performs matrices (that is matrix in the plural form) on upturned trash cans and tree stumps, in the dirt, a couple of changes right on his leg, etc.

Even with all of that description, I am not sure it paints a clear picture because I am sure even the most astounding writing would have some difficulty in trying to come up with a satisfactory way.

Anyhow: On to the magic and the review!

The DVD does not really use music - you get the real sounds of life, as it were, during the artsy parts and in between chapters, you get a rumbling sound effect when the titles pop up.

One thing that stood out to me immediately is that there is essentially a warning label right on the box: Expert Coin Magic. How many times have you bought a product and read reviews and were still unsure if the material was within your range of skill/ability? This tells you right on the box - and it is not kidding!

The material is not new as far as plots are concerned, but the execution and moves are and most of them are quite hard to do. Regular and practiced coin workers that are well-versed in the genre would have an easier time learning the things on here, but this is absolutely not for beginners or even some intermediate coin magicians.

The video starts off by giving you the ability to view the video in English or in French, then it takes you to the appropriate menu. Both menus are well structured and you have the option of watching everything straight through, or you can choose to watch the performances or the explanations with the option to pick which ones to watch on a chapter by chapter basis.

The teaching is really good although there are no spoken words at all on this DVD. Most moves are taught from different angles and those using playing cards are taught with clear cards with white borders to help make everything more clear. There are also over-the-shoulder and performer-view shots that are very handy at times. Tristan also did a great job with slowing down the moves rather than rushing through them, and a few times where slow motion would help the explanation even more, it was used.

So why the language option if there is no spoken word? For one: The names of the moves and sleights. Second, as you watch the explanations the video will freeze momentarily and text will pop up to clarify what you are supposed to do, which helps make things much easier to understand.

Matrix 450 is a straightforward Matrix with four coins and four cards and is almost instantaneous.

Metal Eclipse (and Metal Eclipse 2) are two variations on the namesake of this DVD, which is an absolutely one-handed vanish of a single coin. This allows you free movement of the hand that vanished the coin for the most part. This one will take lots of practice but looks fantastic, and it is really knacky. The only thing some may not like is the motion for the reappearance, but there are other ways around that.

The Frap Change (2 versions) is a sort of flat-palm slap change of one coin into another. One coin on the lap, you slap it with one hand and it changes, then repeat as often as you want. The first version is done on the top of his leg (a soft surface) and the second on a tree stump (a hard surface). Quite magical when you consider the hand position it uses (flat palm).

Empty Hand is a way to show the front and back of your hand empty before producing (or even vanishing) a coin. This is more of a utility move than anything because excessive "over-proving" that the hand is empty (as is often the case with card manipulators) is not magical and can give it away.

Matrix Evaporation is an offshoot of a Matrix effect - four coins are laid down in four corners and one card covers each coin. Without any funny moves, the cards are cleanly picked up one by one and show the coins have all, and simply, vanished. You end with empty hands, by the way...

Chemical Flower is not for everyone but is a very interesting effect where an unlit cigarette is pushed into the fist and is turned into a "flower" that looks not unlike a daisy. This is an interesting idea and uses a cigarette to make the "flower", thus the name. If you do not smoke you can even use a real flower for the change. Lots of interesting things you can do with this if you think about it.

Equinox is another total one-hand vanish of a single coin. This is different from Metal Eclipse in almost every way, including the reproduction. For those familiar with the Harada Hold, this offers a way to get into that sort of position with one hand, and the reappearance is also similar to some of those used with Harada Hold - very smooth. This is NOT identical to Harada Hold, but there are some shared similarities. I like this one!

Hyper Production is a way of using the Metal Eclipse moves to show your hand empty, produce a coin, wash, rinse and repeat for any number of coins. This can be made to look really good on stage with a Miser's Dream routine - a really advanced version!

Hell - now this was weird. Cool too, yes, but weird. I had to really think about what motivations and justifications you could use for this because what this is, is a way to fold a playing card, cut it into three straight sections and unravel the card bits, and after assembly, spell the word "HELL" with a cross being left over. After I thought about it, this would work better within bizarre magic effects with a prediction, a revelation of a selected word, etc.

Impact is a very interesting way of using the Eclipse Vanish to make a coin appear in an empty glass. Lots of applications here, and if the Eclipse Vanish itself is very knacky to learn, this is even more so!

Resurrection is a combination of an Retention of Vision vanish, coupled with the Equinox move to display both hands empty, then make the coin reappear.

Spanked Matrix is not really a Matrix but rather a multi-coin vanish. Three coins are on your work surface with a single playing card. The left hand picks up the card at the fingertips and the right hand picks up a single coin into the fist. The card is used in a sort of "whacking" motion to hit the top of the hand, which opens immediately showing the coin gone. This is repeated twice more and you have the ability to show your hands empty at the end. This is a very magical looking vanish and can, with a little thinking, even be used as a "sucker" type vanish if that is your thing - especially on magicians!

One of the best things about the ideas/moves/routines on this disc is that there are no actual gaffs required for any of them, with the exception of two of the routines which require an extra "something" that can be purchased for around $3.00/USD. The only other thing required in some of them is an extra, matching coin to whatever type you are using.

There is no crediting on this DVD because most of what you see is quite original, and the things that could have used crediting are already well-known to most magicians that would be watching this DVD - plots, not moves - such as Matrix, etc.

Everything on here is practical in most situations with the exception of two or three items, and those are mostly because of angle restrictions where they would be best performed for 1-3 people.

Again this is absolutely not for beginners or even intermediate coin workers. If you are a well-rounded coin magician that is up for a challenge, this DVD will give you plenty to work on and you will be rewarded quite well if you give these ideas the practice and attention they deserve!

Highly recommended for advanced coin workers!

Product info for Metal Eclipse

Author: Mory, Tristan
Publisher: Tristan Mory & Yuri Kaine
Average Rating:  (2)
Retail Price: $40.00
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Manufacturer's Description:

In this DVD, Tristan MORY is proposing unique coin magic tricks and for that he had created new techniques, which will be explained in full details for the first time. You may be thinking you already know everything about coin magic...Fasten your seat belt.  It will probably shake you badly!!! He was able to push his quest, well beyond conventional borders, and lead to an amazing result...He opened some never explored paths...and that's just a beginning!!!

  • Empty Hand
  • Matrix Evaporation
  • Resurrection
  • Metal Eclipse
  • Hell
  • Chemical Flower
  • Hyper Production
  • Matrix 450
  • Impact
  • Frap Change
  • Equinox
  • Spanked Matrix

Influenced by video-art, feel free to appreciate the show and the unconventional world of Tristan MORY through a short film directed like a meditative journey!12 effects not to be discarded!!! All explained in full details in a French or English version.

Running Time: Approximately 60 mins.

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