Review: Add a grime looks to your footage with Red Giant Magic Bullet Mojo

The Oxford Shorter defines mojo as voodoo, charm, magic, an influence of some kind. Red Giant’s Mojo is more like the magic or voodoo part of the definition than the plain influence of some type. It’s a collection of effects with which you can totally change the atmosphere of a movie clip. It’s available now for Final Cut Pro X as well as for all the other hosts Magic Bullet is now compatible with.

IT Enquirer rating

10/10
URL: redgiantsoftware.com

Pros
  • presets
  • ease-of-use
Cons
  • none
Price (approx.): €22.50

Mojo is a specific type of colour grading. It allows you to warm up highlights and cool off shadows in your clips. It can add a blue-green tone to the background of footage, while protecting skin tones — or even warming them up a bit.

Red Giant’s Magic Bullet Mojo comes with a number of preset effects and a general type of Mojo, but all of the Mojo effects have the same controls — if you know how to set one, you can set them all. The general Mojo preset allows you to create moderate effects. The other presets each enable much more dramatic effects, but only towards the extreme of their preset type (each effect has a name that more or less accurately describes what to expect from it, like “Rising”, “Mojito”, etc.).

Now, what is Mojo good for? Its main use is to create a mood that associates your footage with grunge, crime and in general the layer of society that in US-American is called “white trash”. That is the reason why Mojo and effects plug-ins like it, are mainly used in action movies. However, there’s nobody going to kill you when applying Mojo on pans of luscious meadows. Keep in mind that your beautiful clip with golden sun glow will be transformed into a bleach or dirt look; that’s what Mojo is for.

And Magic Bullet Mojo does a great job; faster than anything else. You can achieve the same looks with other colour grading tools, but believe me: it will take a lot more time to get the same results.

As for a good example of what Mojo can do to a movie, my favourite example is the movie “Deja Vu” with Denzel Washington, which is set in Louisiana. This movie shows well what Mojo can do — although I can’t tell if Red Giant’s product was used for this particular movie.

However, throughout the movie different Mojo looks were used to differentiate between past, presence and future. These different “Mojos” make it easier to follow the storyline.

Red Giant’s Magic Bullet Mojo is best used after colour correction, preferably using Magic Bullet Colorista II, of course!

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