Movie – The Prestige [REVIEW] – Are You Watching Closely?

IMDB Rating: 8,5/10
Genre: Drama, Mystery, Sci-Fi
Director: Christopher Nolan
Writer: Christopher Priest
Stars: Christian BaleHugh JackmanScarlett Johansson


I already know that Christopher Nolan is no longer a director who never fails to make genius movies and it’s not easy to find some movie that similar to his works. For examples, Memento with its non-linear storytelling and the ending that require watching twice. There are still many more besides the movie that as many people know and are still discussed until now possible, Inception. But now, here it comes The Prestige, a movie about magic. Yes, it’s an about magician but not about haphazard sleight. You know, we like to see things like this as a child because we paying attention to what’s in front of our eyes that disappears with special tricks from the magicians. Now You See Me can be said as a similar film about magician but not as glorious with the this Christopher Nolan. With such fantastic cast such as Hugh Jackman, Christian Bale, Scarlett Johansson, even David Bowie, this is a movie with a unique but unusual theme of a genius.

“The Prestige,” set in London exactly at the end of the 19th century. Robert Angier (Hugh Jackman), his beloved wife Julia McCullough (Piper Perabo), his best friend Alfred Borden (Christian Bale), and his assistant. When Julia died while performing, Robert blamed Alfred about her death and they both became enemies. Both became famous and the rival magicians who thwarted each other’s performances on the stage. When Alfred performs a special trick, Robert becomes obsessed and tries to figure out his secret with the consequences that he has to sacrifice.

David Bowie, Hugh Jackman, and Andy Serkis in The Prestige (2006)

The Prestige comes with a unique but so well packed by Christopher Nolan. The plot itself is like his movies in general, using a non-linear plot and always show the ending scene at the beginning. Starting with the first line of Michael Caine with his epic performance, he describes a three phase of the magic. The first phase is “The Pledge,” where the magician shows something as ordinary and normal as a magician in general. The second phase is “The Turn,” where the magician does something unusual from the ordinary stuff like making it disappear and something like that. The third phase is “The Prestige,” where this phase is the most difficult phase of having to reconstruct everything from scratch. This line will be a spark starting from the beginning of the movie until it meets at the end. Which I also didn’t realize that Nolan uses these phases as his narrative when I watch this movie again. The first phase of character recognition and the various conflicts, the second phase introduces something unusual from the characters, until the third phase which all become one answer and return to normal. As Alfred Borden says, “Are you watching closely?” because there are many easter eggs where for those who watch it seriously will probably be able to figure this out. In fact, we don’t want to be fooled by this movie because almost the whole audience’s focused on the performance of two characters who cheat and foil each other. I also just realized when watching this movie twice and was in the murder bird scene. One of the most shocking quotes in this scene’s where the boy says, “But where’s his brother?” when I watch it twice. For those who haven’t watch this movie, these references may include a spoiler or are not assumed.

Christian Bale and Hugh Jackman in The Prestige (2006)

If you’ve watched all Christopher Nolan movies, I think Memento is the most unexpected ending movie for me. Inception can be included but this movie alone is still being debated until now. Throughout the movie, you will always be prepared a variety of twists that will unexpectedly appear including the ending where there is a twist in the twist. Like the last scene of the spinning top from Inception, The Prestige also has something like that but the movie alone is so underrated for me because this Christopher Nolan’s work which so many people still don’t know. Christopher Nolan is also not as cheap to choose the actors in this movie, even he also invited David Bowie. His acting as Tesla is so freaking amazing although his role is only a bit, his acting is the most dominant for myself. Christian Bale and Hugh Jackman are great too with their opposite and mindblowing characters, I think the acting from both of them can be considered fantastic too. Hugh Jackman too, as usual, always amazes me with his acting and I think this movie is where his character isn’t too noticeable. Scarlett Johansson is also steady, along with Michael Caine and Rebecca Hall who are full of emotion without facial. I don’t really see Piper Perabo because her role is just a moment. I also like the use of the background place in this movie that coincided in the 19th century where the film is a bit talking about Nikola Tesla and Thomas Edison, although Thomas Edison was never seen in the credit. I think the backstory main characters are less developed so that I don’t feel any sympathy apart from the twist ending. Moreover, I wonder if in the 19th century there was such a technology that beat this modern age. But overalls, it’s still perfect with all that covered it.


Overall, The Prestige is a film about magic which is so underrated for me. Bringing a uniqueness about magic and fantastic cast from actor and actress, this film makes it all the more adds to the ever-present twist. It’s not just about magic but a movie that shakes each other and has to watch it seriously if you want to speculate the ending. The usual cinematography by Christopher Nolan is always amazing, the score too, and the story. I think this is one thriller movie that isn’t boring every second because we always anticipate what else will come next. It’s a must-watch for all ages and one of the movies to watch before you die.

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4 thoughts on “Movie – The Prestige [REVIEW] – Are You Watching Closely?

  1. Memento is one of my favorite films of all time, and I’m looking forward to seeing this one as well. From what I’ve heard, the critics really got it wrong when it was first making the rounds.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I watch Memento one year ago which this is a movie that I always watch it after I finished once. Nope, I always watch two or three times all of Christopher Nolan’s movie. Thank you for your opinion. It’s a nice trivia right there. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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