Saturday, December 09, 2006
The prestige is the final flourish, the act that creates disbelief as a show concludes. The Prestige features three magicians' obsession with retribution. Watch them burn, watch them burning. Each is a saboteur of the other's plans to become the greatest magician in England - a drive so filling that it leaves no room for humanity. Their arts become darker. Having exhausted the possibilities of magic, they reach toward science, finding in it their final act, their prestige. What a prestige it is. All but the faintest spark of love remains in the final act, with warm feeling making way for machine-cold as the age of magic fades away. Death returns their colour, and emotion flows like blood from a deep wound. The prestige is about reputation, and about the deep desire to show the crowds something new. And that is at the movie's heart: the need to be creative and surprise and delight - it's about the stunned faces in the instant before the applause.