The Prestige

The Prestige

Set in a stylized late-Victorian world of dueling music-hall magicians and diabolically clever inventors, [like director Nolan's previous work], 'The Prestige' has a puzzlelike structure, zipping around in time and scattering clues throughout its busy scenes and frames.

It begins with a death and proceeds through a murder trial and its aftermath, using flashbacks within flashbacks to deepen the mystery it promises to solve and changing points of view to misdirect our attention. At the center are two ambitious young magicians, Robert Angier (Jackman) and Alfred Borden (Bale), also known as the Professor. They start out as friends and fellow apprentices, but quickly become bitter personal and professional rivals. Their enmity stems from an accidental onstage killing, and before long it is hard for them to disentangle the desire for revenge from the impulse toward one-upmanship.

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The Peoples' Reviews

Average ratings from 6 ratings, 6 reviews
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A film in which Dame David Bowie acts... well?! Yup, it's that good! Well worth multiple viewings, Chrisopher Nolan's puzzle-box movie is intriguing and beautifully shot and edited. A magic film about magic. An illusion about illusions. If you enjoyed INCEPTION - you'll like this (but maybe only after the third viewing!) Proof that not all mainstream movies need be dumb :)

What are you people talking about? For me... this didn't wash. I couldn't buy it.

I thought Batman Begins was awesome so I was keen to check out another Nolan film with Christian Bale. I wasn't disappointed.

I think I missed the point of the previews as I was expecting a sort-of comedy but it really isn't. Jackman and Bale are very good as friends-come-rivals and the plot twists that take place are very well executed.

The supporting cast are great too -- Caine is great and Bowie was really surprising!!

One of those movies that constantly keeps you guessing, and has you sitting down for hours afterwards, picking apart various plot points and key moments. Both Bale and Jackman are outstanding (and Michael Caine is his usual brilliant self) - even Scarlett Johansson was bearable! Definitely one of the better movies I've seen.

Fantastic, thought provoking and entertaining.

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The Press Reviews

76% of critics recommend.
Rotten Tomatoes Score. More reviews on Rotten Tomatoes

  • 1/2 When all is said and done and you get the full explanation of what meant what and who did what to whom, it's not fulfilling at all. It's a magic trick that's all showmanship and craft, but lacking true whimsy, ultimately failing the audience... Full Review

  • 1/2 If The Prestige is something of a let down as a magic trick, it's more successful as a tale of obsession. The rivalry between the magicians is brutal and bloody and Bale and Jackman do their best work when they're plotting each other's downfall... Full Review

  • 1/2 Nolan directs the film exactly like a great trick, so you want to see it again the second it's over. I'd call that wicked clever... Full Review

  • Stuffed with hard-working actors, sleek effects and stagy period details, The Prestige, directed by Christopher Nolan from a script he wrote with his brother Jonathan, is an intricate and elaborate machine designed for the simple purpose of diversion... Full Review

  • Clearly, director Nolan is aiming for something else. But the delight in sheer gamesmanship that marked his breakout "Memento" doesn't survive this project's gimmickry and aspirations toward "Les Miserables"-style epic passion... Full Review