Thursday, April 05, 2007

The Prestige

I have seen this movie twice. The first time I had no idea what to think about this movie, so I decided not to write about it. The second time, well, I decided to write something. Let’s be clear I did not enjoy this movie and as an incredulous person I am, I resisted and that’s why I watched again. The following is the end result of my absurdity.

This is a story about two dueling magicians that start the feud after one becomes instrumental in the death of the other’s wife. Is a dark morally intense drama that could have been displayed successfully if the director had chosen to play it forward instead of moving so much in time. The going back and forward (which worked marvelously in La Môme) not only gives a repulsive mood to this movie, but also results in a messy end product.

Then magic is all about misdirection. If you guess the trick then you lose the magic. Maybe not everyone could guess the main trick, but I was one of the unlucky ones and early guessed right as they gave away so many tips and I like to observe, especially when the movie does not grab my total attention. Perhaps the director paid little attention to not giving up the prestige so early or perhaps he did it on purpose…but it does not work either way.

The acting is acceptable. Hugh Jackman’s Angier is stiff, but maybe his character was supposed to be like that. Christian Bale’s Borden is complex and maybe a little overacted. No idea what Piper Perabo and Scarlett Johansson are doing in this movie, their roles could have been played by unknowns and would have been the same. Two notable exceptions, Michael Caine’s screen presence makes Cutter extraordinary and David Bowie’s Tesla really grabs your attention.

Released after The Illusionist some feel that this did not help this movie, but to me they are two totally different stories about magicians. Yet I do concur that the cinematography is more than similar is the same!

With so many popular actors involved in this movie probably will attract more viewers now that the DVD is out. If the actors or the story appeal to you I suggest you rent it not buy it, as the extras are worthless.

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