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Return to 2006 Films

Index of 2006

An Inconvenient Truth
Big Bad Swim
Brokeback Mountain
Cinderella Man
The Departed
The DaVinci Code
Eron: The Smartest
Guys in the Room

Good Night and
Good Luck

Half Nelson
History of Violence
Hotel Rwanda
Little Miss Sunshine
Journey from the Fall
March of the Penguins
Million Dollar Baby
Prairie Home Companion
Star Wars III:
Revenge of the Sith

Thank You for Smoking
The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada
The Sea Inside
United 93
War of the Worlds
Walk the Line
World Trade Center

The Prestige

A Review by Tom Condon, OP
(St. Martin Province)

The Prestige centers on the rivalry between two magicians in 1890’s London: Robert Angier, (Hugh Jackman) and Alfred Borden (Christian Bale). Angier blames Borden for the death of his wife in a magic trick, when the two were working together. They go their separate ways, becoming bitter rivals. Each tries to win fame, while outdoing the other.

The Prestige is an intricately plotted film, taking us into the world of magicians and their secrets. It captured my attention quickly with its clever plot turns. Unfortunately, my interest eventually began to wander. Long scenes involving Angier’s trip to Colorado could have been substantially cut. At 2 hours and 10 minutes, the heavily plotted with unsympathetic characters began to bog down in the foggy streets of London. The overall tone of the film is also nasty, as the rivals stop at nothing to steal secrets and ultimately destroy the other. As Scarlett Johansson, the lovely assistant who becomes involved with both Angier and Borden says: “You two deserve each other.”

The most redeeming feature of the film is its exquisite visual design. Director Christopher Nolan has a wonderful visual sense. We see the illusions from the perspective of the audience and backstage from the magicians’ perspective. Early experiments with electricity in the magic acts are intriguing. The sets, costumes and photography draw us into the world of illusion and serve the film well.

The Prestige is beautiful and entertaining to a point. However, after an hour and a half or so, I felt like I was involved in a Monopoly game that had gone on too long. I didn’t care who won. I just wanted it to be over.

Tom Condon, OP

Running Time 128 minutes

MPAA Rating PG-13 - for violence and disturbing images.

The USCCB Office for Film & Broadcasting classification is A-II -- adults and adolescents.

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