Another wicked cool Chris Angel illusion.

He’s easily one of the most amazing magicians out there these days:


38 thoughts on “Another wicked cool Chris Angel illusion.

  1. I’ll have to resort to the old: Far out man.
    Audience set-ups, midgets and especially, what you see ain’t necessarily so, comes to mind. LOL

  2. Yeah, I was definitely thinking midgets were involved.  Not sure about the audience set up, since the whole things is so freaky, and happened so fast, nobody really would have noticed little details that would give it away because of the shock.  I would really like to have seen this in person though.

  3. Buzz: Not sure about the audience set up …

    There may have been a coupla ‘innocent players’ but the main ‘three’ players weren’t.
    The talk-talk is as much a part of the illusion as the illusion.
    They are all setups for the video audience … unless you believe in magic and other impossibilities.
    Watch this fella:

    He’s good too.
    And No. I am no expert in this field but xians have been using the power of suggestion for eons without having to show, let alone prove, a thing. Over a billion suckers YTD. LOL

  4. Well, it’s hard to say exactly how it was done, and whether or not the audience was in on it.  In any case, the action could not have been continuous, as it seems to be: there must have been breaks at the scene cuts for setting up the trick, with voiceover blending them together again.  There’s no way the woman who was divided could have already been two small people or whatever from the start- watch how perfectly she walks and lays down on the bench.

    We already know that Chris Angel also levitates with a lot of helpful editing.  I would guess that most of the magic here, too, takes place in the editing room, and the real trick is making us believe we’re seeing a contiguous live show.

  5. I’m always amused at the discussions that take place after people see something like this. I spent some time the other day perusing various forums that had comments about this and other illusions he’s done and the conversations all run along similar lines.

    The two primary lines of discussions that take place tend to fall along the lines of either A) it’s two midgets/camera tricks/careful editing/etc. or B) maybe he’s got real supernatural powers cause I can’t begin to explain how he does it. What I find amusing is all the debate over things that should be pretty obvious such as whether or not part of the “audience” is in on the illusion and are just actors.

    This is a major illusion and as such it requires the participation of a number of people the most obvious of which would be the ‘victim’ of the illusion. I’d also guess that there was another 2 to 4 people in the crowd who were part of Angel’s crew as part of the trick is to control the angle it’s viewed at and just having crew members on either side of the crowd could act as a form of crowd control. It’s certainly possible the entire audience is in on it and is just acting for the benefit of making a TV show, but I doubt that as illusions are most effective when you have real people reacting to them and it’s not hard to find overly gullible people in the area to make up a small audience with. Was it all one continuous event or was it pieced together from edits? Hard to say, but I’d be inclined to think it happens more or less as shown because it’s a common knee-jerk criticism to claim it’s camera/edit tricks so most good magicians will avoid using that method as much as possible.

    It’s an illusion and Angel doesn’t present it as anything other than that. The “magic” comes from the fact that he was clever enough to figure out how to make us think we saw something we know is impossible, but the explanation for it (if he were to reveal it) would likely be fairly mundane. Take, for example, one of his earlier illusions I posted on SEB where he does some very impressive levitation tricks. He manages to float from the floor up onto a chair or a small concrete wall and, at one point, levitates his way up an escalator. It’s damned impressive, but as revealed in this video clip he produced he reveals the very mundane way he accomplished the illusion.

    For an example of how his crew is part of the audience check out this video clip where he reveals how he’s tricking some police officers.

  6. I have to say, I love this explanation from the youtube boards:

    this is just a fake explaination so we don’t think he’s what he is Not of this earth. What about sticking his hand through a human being? What about walking across the sky from one building to another where’s his leg then?

    I’m torn between thinking this person is an idiot and thinking they came up with a pretty nifty conspiracy theory. I guess the two aren’t mutually exclusive though.

  7. Ok, this one at first blush is pretty cool, but I think I have a really solid explanation for it:

    Chris Angel Walks on Water

    I just like the religious implications of this one, since there was a guy a few thousand years ago that got a lot of press over walking on water…

  8. Actually, it was just disgusting and cruel. I could care less about how he did it, nor anything else he does now.

  9. Elwed: Wasn’t there a documentary on Discovery or something about a woman born without legs and pelvis? Just wondering…

    I dunno about a woman, but I recall seeing a bloke without legs & pelvis who trolleyed himself around on a board with wheels.
    It was the first thing I thought of when I saw the ‘trick’ coz midgets/dwarfs don’t usually have ‘normal’ sized arms.
    As Sir Humphrey said: “In the fullness of time” – we’ll know how he did it.
    What we do know is, it wasn’t Godwhodunit.

    TonyF: Actually, it was just disgusting and cruel. I could care less about how he did it, nor anything else he does now.

    ‘It was disgusting and cruel’? Get a fuckin life mate. It was funny. LOL
    You didn’t take it seriously did you? What are ya? Are you a fuckin wanker, a woose, or what?
    ‘I could care less’ … It’s – I couldN’T care less.
    What’s with ‘I could care less’? It makes NO fuckin sense at all, at all.
    Sheeat (or Fuckin hell!! Take your pick)!!
    Fuckin … Yeah, I know it’s fucking … wankers shit me. LOL

    Arko: I dunno man; it was hella shocking and funny. I kinda admire his work.

    Cool and why not? He has us intrigued (talking about it) and isn’t that the object of the game? LOL

  10. Don’t know any particulars, but I remember a fascinating book in my junior high library about “different” people, most of whom ended up in freak shows, and there were a couple of them who looked as though they could have played the part of the top half in Angel’s trick.

    I must also add, along with arc and john, that however it was done, it was pretty cool and funny.

  11. another day – another bonus.

    My philosophy exactly, John.  Life’s a gift, especially if you have lots of freedom, as most of us do.

  12. Btw, this is apparently quite an old trick, dating back at least to 1937.  I’m still convinced that it was spliced together, though.

  13. Zilch: Life’s a gift, especially if you have lots of freedom

    George W. Bush: I believe that freedom is the deepest need of every human soul.
    Even Dubya can say something moderately intelligent, sometimes, without fucking up, if it’s rehearsed often enough.

    For no other reason than that I can – we’re playing Brazil (5 times world champions) in a (football=soccer) game tonite at 2am.
    Our local AFL Footy Show is playing up (direct from Munich = München) the World Game and making mileage from it.
    Sam Newman, a gun AFL footballer from ages past is a commentator/contributor on the show. Sam is a known womaniser, hedonist, confrontationalist and a sarcastically entertaining son-of-a-bitch.
    He couldn’t be a success in the Theocracy of USA wowsers coz he sometimes has a foul mouth.
    You can tell I like him.
    Apparently he got outa the taxi, had an altercation with the driver who said: … and don’t slam the door. Sam: Fuck ya, I’m not even gonna shut it.
    He never took shit when he played either.
    At a little videoed session a wanker spat at Sam, and Sam decked him.
    One soft Wack and down he went, like a bucket of shit.
    I quite like the fact that there’s one game (Kultcha) that likes the other game.
    Why am I surprised? A game is a game is a game and if Oz is in it, it’s us.
    They’ve just got Men at Work playing – I come from a land Down-under.
    It’s a real ‘fuck you’ song. Love it. Wish we had that as our Nat Anthem.
    And, of course we have Eddy McGuire, ex-Who Wants to be a Millionaire host, President Collingwood AFL football club, CEO Channel 9 since Kerry Packer died, controlling the panel.
    Ah. Fuckit. Makes me proud to be an Ozzie. Go the Socceroos. 
    Gee. The beer’s going down well.
    Better go.

  14. Zilch: I’m still convinced that it was spliced together, though.

    Spliced? Good one. LOL

  15. Good find, zilch.

    Note how CA supports the back of the head of whoever’s reclining on the bench? That’s probably because otherwise the trick would fall apart wink

  16. I think I actually recognize the lady in the trick from one of Elwed’s aforementioned Discovery Channel shows. That’s also how I assumed the top half of the trick was done.

    I wasn’t sure about the bottom half because the legs were so well formed that I didn’t think it could be a midget, but the more I think about it the more I realize it wouldn’t have to be a midget, just someone who’s shorter than usual.

    Angel seems to revive some of the best tricks of the past. There’s another clip on YouTube where he gets cut in half by a giant circular saw without the aid of being in a box and with the audience allowed to walk between his two halves. One of his promoters goes on and on about how “no one’s ever done a trick like this” and that’s a bullshit claim to make. I know for a fact that David Copperfield has a similar trick he’s done cause I’ve seen him do it. In his he’s supposedly trying to escape before the saw slices him in two, but it malfunctions and comes down faster than it’s “supposed” to and slices him in two at which point the two tables move around on their own to show that he’s separated. I’ve seen at least one other magician do a similar trick with an assistant and his had lots of fake blood and tissue flying to really make the effect scary.

  17. That was awesome.  Doesn’t matter how he did it.  The ‘audience’ reactions were priceless.  Old tricks done in new ways are always cool to watch.

  18. I am writing about the way Criss Angels “broke” the woman in half. I am a I am a Psychologist. When you see the TWO bodies being separated, you see the supposed lower section sit up, and the top half of the body crawling away at a great speed on two very coordinated arms.

    Let’s ask ourselves this. If we were torn in half by Criss Angel, would we be coordinated enough to walk away so fast on two arms/fists? Why would we run away from our body? If he took us apart, then he should be able to put us back together. David Copperfield at least finishes the act.

    Criss Angel is a good magician. Some of his acts are hard to debunk. But the half woman thing. Come on. Its an 1880’s visual deception/magic.

    Can someone tell me how he walked between the two buildings? Thanks

  19. Come on. Its an 1880’s visual deception/magic.

    Um Keith, we had worked that out.  What we are debating is how it was done- which bits are editing of the film etc.

    If you want to see something really spooky watch Derren Brown.  He uses a form of NLP (which he says most of what is claimed is bunk) to get people to make decisions that he wants.  Its like that thing about talking about lice makes your head itch- only more subtle.  He played noughts and crosses blindfolded and won.  He’s also done James Randi style exposes of mediums etc.

  20. She’s handicapped woman with artifical lower body. I’ts evident when you see her running withtout legs

  21. actually he has a specal pair of pants for levating he steps out of them with one foot and lifts him self up thats why he has his back facing the people

  22. OK, so I am going to spoil it a little bit.  If you look at the woman who he first asks to lay down she is not the same girl that “runs” away.  I actually know the girl that runs away and she is not a midget.  When she was born, her legs did not fully develop and she has been in a wheelchair ever since.  You may not believe this, but she can actually RUN very fast on her hands.  I’m not sure how the bottom half of the trick was done, but as for the top of the girl, that is how big she actually is.  They switch girls when Criss goes behind the bench and they cut away to that random guy.  Anyways, hopefully this wasn’t a huge spoiler for those of you that believe in MAGIC!!!

  23. You’re not spoiling anything as, if you read through the comments, we’ve long since found the earlier performance of this very same illusion by “Rajah Raboid” back in the 1930s aided and abetted by “half-man” Johnny Eckhardt and a midget who acted as Johnny’s legs.

    It’s an old trick, but one done exceedingly well.

  24. Its majorly edited.  If you paused the video when the top half is running away then you can see frames where her right arm is missing and shes floating in the air.

  25. You guys are thinking too hard. Its an old topic but I thought I’d end this case.

    All this trick is, is a woman with no legs attached to prostethic legs that have some sort of electronic capability to move.

    If you look closely you’ll notice the legs stand up on their own and when the woman is walking over the camera avoids showing her walk.

    Then when she is pulled apart you can look closely and notice that the “ripped” portion of the woman is not just waist and above. There is something that moves independently from the waist which would be the nubs of what used to be legs.

  26. No need for electronic legs. The trick is over 50 years old and how it was done has already been discussed previously.

  27. Not only that, but I will bet a silk pajama that there aren’t any prosthetic legs (yet) that walk as well as the woman did in the film.

  28. You just have to watch the video several times to see the following: When the legs stand up Cris Angel moves to the front of the bench (no one else is near the becnh).  When the camera zooms in on the toes he is standing at approximately 3:00 o’clock to the legs (look at the shadows).  Then you get a shot of the wiggling toes. Note that there are two persons to the right of the legs, both of which are now behind her. This would mean that the tape was spliced at this point.

    I saw an ABC (Americann Broadcast Company; not Australian Broadcast Company) where there was a young man by the name of Doug Fortis who did not have a pelvis.  He ambulated on his arms very much like the woman in tthe tape.  Many of us had figured this part out.  If you look atg how the woman walks, it cannot be artifical legs (too natural a gait).  So that must mean a midget or dwarf.  But you say, look at the proportion of her feet, they look proportional to the rest of her body.  Well, it could be a midget or dwarf using artificial legs and feet.  That would mean stooges in holding the artifical legs.

    Great trick and nice performance (even if it is an old one).

  29. Alan: I saw an ABC (American Broadcast Company; not Australian Broadcast Company)

    WoW! A USian who knows Oz exists as well as knowing our ABC exists.
    You’ve impressed me – and before anyone else suggests it – I’m easily impressed.
    It’s a pity you didn’t use all those smarts to read the comments; you woulda realised we know all there is to know about that trick. smile

  30. Yes, there was a documentary featuring this same woman who was born without legs. The real trick was getting her to the bench… Notice how Criss helps her lay down with particular attention to not letting her bang her head, as the legs were Criss’ prop. Then after she was “pulled in half” notice how undauntedly she ambles off… this is her normal “get-around” behavior.

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