Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Quick Movie Review: "The Prestige"

Yes, three reviews in a row...this is the benefit of living within two minutes walking distance of a theater and paying two dollars on a student discount to see the movies. So here's my look at Christopher Nolan's "The Prestige."

1. Nolan isn't for everybody, and many find his work to be sheer "gimmick." I am not one of those people (still loving "Memento"), and this is another great work with twists, turns. Is it Shakespeare? No. Is it a great story that keeps its momentum and keeps you interested and guessing until the end? Absolutely, and I love that kind of diversion.

2. I was very pleasantly surprised by how well this movie turned out. Here in Brazil (and I suspect in the U.S.), the previews made it look like some magician story, which it partly is, but really, at its core, it's a movie about obsession, and Hugh Jackman and Christian Bale play competing sides of obsession to the hilt.

3. While the three main characters (Jackman, Bale, and Michael Caine) all do an outstanding job, David Bowie's (yes, David Bowie's) portrayal of Nikolas Tesla is absolutely enchanting and scene-stealing. People automatically think "The Labyrinth" when they think of Bowie acting, but please - he can act, in this film and in others (see also the criminally underrated 1970s realistic-sci-fi film, "The Man Who Fell to Earth," based on the outstanding novel by Walter Tevis).