Thursday, May 5, 2016

The Prestige

The Prestige stands along with Memento as one of Christopher Nolan's strongest films, for once again a fairly similar reason. Both films work brilliantly in their mind bending tricks, and the twists both contain are incredibly effective. The Prestige, as with, Memento is more than just trick despite being about magicians. The film stands well on its portrayal of a the rivalry between the two magicians, Borden, the one fueled by a professional motivation to strive for something new, the other, Angier, having a personal motivation to get some sort of revenge. Both are so well cast with Christian Bale as the brooding yet daring magician, and Hugh Jackman as the charismatic showman but safer individual. Their relationship is always maintained as paramount and the film explores both men's lives even in elements outside the rivalry. The film, as one would expect, is visually striking in capturing the visual detail, but also the magic of well magic. One of my favorite elements though is when it goes beyond a bit in the use of Nicholas Tesla that adds an extra bit of subtext given his own rivalry with Thomas Edison. The film succeeds in pulling the strings together to find a captivating conclusion but what I love most about it is that is not all there is to it. The twists only makes subsequent viewings all the more engaging as it earns it, and fitting for a film about magicians is it's  there in plain sight, you just don't notice it.

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