“Are You Watching Closely?” is the main focus throughout the duration of The Prestige. Director Christopher Nolan twists and turns fill our minds full of enigma and perplexity that makes us ask “How?” Set in the end of the beautiful Victorian era years in London, magicians Alfred Borden (Christian Bale) and Rupert Angier (Hugh Jackman) are locked in a bitter feud after an illusion gone wrong that resulted in the death of a beautiful assistant. As bitter feuds grow to grudges that lead to sabotaging each other’s shows, the captivation of one particular illusion “The Transported Man” starts off as fascination but slowly drives Angier to reckless obsession in search of the truth behind the illusion. The Prestige is an extravagant endeavour of thrilled mystery and perplexity.
Both magicians are in an abracadabra war of un-puzzling each other’s tricks and sabotage. The story is told through the diary entries of Borden that Angier has possession of in an attempt to uncover the truth behind his tricks and mysteries. However as Borden reads on we also discover the journey he embarks on of fascination that drives to obsession. Watching The Prestige is like entering a magical show of illusions, tricks and hypnosis. The Prestige is a film deliberately crafted to fool you and make you believe what it wants you to believe. At the very beginning we are shown the core foundations to a perfect trick, The Pledge, The Turn and The Prestige. Christopher Nolan is not only the director to The Prestige but rather the illusionists, mentalists, tricksters and hypnotists and we are the audience waiting to be fooled. You are constantly being misdirected by the cinematic version of sleight of hand but we still sit there and be mesmerized.