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The Prestige

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United Kingdom, United States · 2006
2h 10m
Director Christopher Nolan
Starring Christian Bale, Hugh Jackman, Michael Caine, Scarlett Johansson
Genre Drama, Mystery, Thriller

In 1890s London, magicians Angier and Borden become bitter enemies after a tragic incident. When Borden develops a trick he calls the Transported Man, Angier becomes obsessed with figuring out his secret. However, Angier's quest to uncover Borden's secret sends him down a road that could lead to his demise.

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What are people saying?

Conner Dejecacion Profile picture for Conner Dejecacion

One of the most mind-bending films I've ever seen. I confess I still don't know exactly what happens in it, but leave it to Christopher Nolan to turn a movie about hack magicians into a suffocatingly-tense thriller about rivalry and obsession. Bale and Jackman give outstanding performances as usual, and the grimy yet glamorous setting of high society London is superbly-realized.

What are critics saying?


Village Voice by

The result is a lopsided yet absorbing movie in which the director is less drawn to his main characters than to those on the periphery.


The New York Times by A.O. Scott

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.


Washington Post by Ann Hornaday

Bale and Jackman inject their reliable charisma into two otherwise very cold fish. Okay, I'll say it: If you see only one magic-at-the-turn-of-the-century movie this year, make it this one.


Variety by Dennis Harvey

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.


Los Angeles Times by Kenneth Turan

The Prestige does more than focus on magicians. It is so in love with the romance, wonder and ability to fool of stage illusion that it becomes something of a magic trick in and of itself


The Hollywood Reporter by Kirk Honeycutt

Audiences might enjoy this cinematic sleight of hand, but the key characters are such single-minded, calculating individuals that the real magic would be to find any heart in this tale.


Chicago Tribune by Michael Phillips

Many, I suspect, will fall for The Prestige and its blend of one-upsmanship and science fiction. I prefer "The Illusionist," the movie that got here first.

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