Saturday, October 28, 2006

Abra

The Prestige may be the best movie I've seen all year. It's the most gripping film I've seen in longer than that. It's hard to top a movie with its pedigree: directed by Christopher Nolan, with Hugh Jackman and Christian Bale starring, Michael Caine and David Bowie (as Tesla, no less) in supporting roles. I love to go to movies, both to watch them, enjoy them, but also as a place to think if the movie is less than stellar. But I realized fairly quickly that I was completely absorbed. Which is fitting for a story of brutal obsession.

One of the best things about the movie is how Nolan doesn't softpedal the various timelines running throughout; other directors would use fades, wipes, different film stocks, to signal where in time, in the narrative, you as viewer are. You have to pay attention but also rely on your understanding of narrative to keep up. It's great.

The plot dovetails so adroitly at one point I chuckled aloud, which is, for me, kind of the highest compliment I pay a movie, when I'm ridiculously pleased by the skill on display.

I'm not quite sure what to make of the very last shot, though, the very last image. I'll have to see it again and I'll be happy to do so.

6 comments:

Reel Fanatic said...

I'm definitely with you on "The Prestige" .. there's no other director working today who would have been able to handle such a difficult story with such style

Melissa said...

Hope I'm not double-posting. (Problems logging in.)

I've been seeing previews to this movie and have been intrigued. But this morning, I saw a less than admirable review and was disappointed. Now, since reading the response of movie-goer/poet-boy extraordinaire, I'll be able to go with high expectations, as originally planned. :)

cK said...

Gah! I'm reaching that point in a film's release (roughly ten days) at which I suffer dissonance over whether to see a film in its main release, in its discount theater appearance pre-DVD, or only on DVD. Dammit.

But I think Nolan has a fine sense of building a story (and making it fun at the same time), the Prestige looked wonderful in previews, I've only heard good word of mouth, and...and...

I really wish I was more proactive with these viewings.
-cK

Ali Davis said...

Jordan and I LOVED it. I gasped aloud at the top hat part...My only qualm was also with the ending shot. I wanted to leave on a positive note. I'm be thinking about this one for days.

Paul said...

It's so great. It doesn't hurt that it's set in such a great historical era.

Just not sure what I'm supposed to take from that last shot. Still thinking about it.

Valerie Loveland said...

That movie was a lot of fun. The person I went with complained about all the flashbacks, but I thought it was great--the whole movie felt like a magic trick.