Celebrating Great Films

Friday, January 26, 2007

The Prestige

The Prestige#187 at time of writing.

I was extremely excited when I heard that this movie was coming out. It's about magic. I love magic. It's directed by Chris Nolan. Memento and Batman Begins are two of the best films I've ever seen. And it was getting rave reviews. Surely a winning formula?

When I finally got around to watching it, I was treated to an involving story about rivalry, risk and obsession in the golden age of magic, when a combination of Victorian sensibilities, boundless imagination and showmanship, and new technology that actually seemed magical, led to the most fascinating and inspiring conjuring there has ever been.

My appreciation of this film has grown further since reading Hiding the Elephant, which is a wonderfully told history of modern magic. Nothing to do with the film, but recommended all the same, especially if you have even a passing interest in prestidigitorial trickery.

The one complaint I have about this film is that I was slightly disappointed that the story resorted to a supernatural twist at the end after being so proudly realistic, or at least verisimilar, for most of its length. Having said that, the twist was deliciously dark, and absolutely fitting.

And hey, it's got David Bowie in it. That gets any film extra points.

1 comment:

  1. if you like magic,maybe you might like a book called 'Jonathan strange and mr.norrell'....it is about two magicians trying to bring back magic to england and presented in a very humourous manner