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THE PRESTIGE
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Reviewed by: Andre Manseau

Directed by: Christopher Nolan

Starring:
Christian Bale
Hugh Jackman
Scarlett Johansson

Movie:  
star star star star
Extras:  
star star star star
Overall:  
star star star star
What's it about
The Prestige tells the tale of two young magicians (Batman and wolverine..or Christian Bale and Hugh Jackman, respectively) who are constantly trying to outdo each other as time goes on. Eventually, one of them finds a way to perform the ultimate trick, which involves, quite literally, playing God.
Is it good movie?
Upon hearing of this film, I was absolutely pumped, for fanboy reasons alone. I mean, we have Chris Nolan, the director of arguably the best superhero movie in the last decade, alongside the man who brought new life into the Dark Knight, as well as the man who has become a living embodiment of one of Marvel's greatest characters, Wolverine. Add to this, the fantastic supporting cast of Micheal Caine and Scarlett Johansson, and you have a formula for a surefire hit. I mean, the movie could really have been about people sitting around, watching paint dry, and i'd have been on the edge of my seat, intrigued all along.

So anyway, luckily for us, the movie isn't about the fascinating subject of watching paint dry, but rather the competitive spirit that drives two men to the brink of madness. I'm not going to give away an ounce of the plot. If I do, I might spoil the whole film for you, but let me tell you this, you don't want to miss it.

The movie has so many twists and turns. The whole thing plays out like a grand narrative that absolutely captures your imagination. You will be constantly guessing the secrets of each magician as they perform their tricks, and you may have a hard time picking sides, as at times Bale's character may seem too mysterious and secretive, and Jackman's chararacter is straightforward in his never-ending desire to beat out his long-time rival.

The acting in this film is simply the cream of the crop, beyond a shadow of a doubt. However, even if it wasn't, the cinematography and incredible directing would still have you by the short and curlies. I suppose if there's one thing I would have to say in the negative column, it is only that I figured out 'the main twist' fairly quickly, and ended up being right. That does not spoil my enjoyment of the film at all however, as it requires almost an immediate re-watch, Sixth Sense style to pick up what you may have missed.

Simply put, The Prestige is movie magic, one of the best films of 2006, and a must see.
Video / Audio
Video is presented in 2.35:1 anamorphic widescreen and is simply to die for. A must see.

Audio 5.1, sounds wonderful, crisp, clean and near perfect. Pretty much reference quality stuff.
The Extras
The meat of the extras is found in The Director's Notebook: The Cinematic Sleight of Hand. This part is split into five parts, "Conjuring the Past," "The Visual Maze," "Metaphors of Deception," "Tesla: The Man Who Invented the Twentieth Century," and "Resonances." Unfortunately, the whole thing doesn't run as long as you'd hope, and although various key members of the cast and crew are interviewed, it's pretty much standard fare- influences, visual style, and a bit on the history of magic as well. It's all well done, but leaves you wanting more.

The only other feature to be found is The Art of The Prestige, which is nothing more than a photo gallery of the usual posters ,production skills and behind the scenes shots.
Last Call
The Prestige is a near-epic filmmaking experience that must be seen by anyone who considers themselves to be a fan of filmmaking. The acting, cinematography and direction are all fantastic. The only downside to this disc is a slim selection of extras, a commentary would have been so appreciated! That aside though, this is true movie magic at its finest, and the disc's quality makes it a must-own for your collection.
ARROW IN THE HEAD'S RATING SYSTEM
star star star star I'D BUTCHER MY FAMILY TO SEE THIS AGAIN
star star star HANG ME BUT I DUG IT A LOT
star star AN OK WAY TO KILL TWO HOURS
star JUST SLING AN ARROW IN MY HEAD AND LET ME DIE IN PEACE

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