User Score
8.8

Universal acclaim- based on 687 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 13 out of 687
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  1. Dec 8, 2013
    0
    I am outraged that this movie received a single, let alone 447 positive reviews. I cannot use foul language here, as much as I feel the urge, so I will just say this: shame on all of those who gave this movie a positive review, regardless of whether they did it because they are stupid or just because they are liars. I can't afford to waste two hours like this anymore, and I would like aI am outraged that this movie received a single, let alone 447 positive reviews. I cannot use foul language here, as much as I feel the urge, so I will just say this: shame on all of those who gave this movie a positive review, regardless of whether they did it because they are stupid or just because they are liars. I can't afford to waste two hours like this anymore, and I would like a warning before I see a dumb plotted, predictable piece of excrement like this one here. Who could have imagined that one guy had a twin brother, and that true magic would come about produced by none other than Nikola Tesla?! And the lead characters' motives, ridiculous. At first he hates him because he caused his wife's death, but then he couldn't care less any more about his wife, he just wants to ruin his act and steal his lousy tricks. The other guy reciprocates wholeheartedly. If you wondering who he is and who the other he is, you weren't paying attention. It's completely unimportant. Who cares. It just an awful, awful, aaaawful movie. If you haven't seen it, I envy you. Stay away!!! Expand
  2. BillR
    Nov 23, 2008
    3
    Dissappointing. This film had some great elements that could have lead to a fantastic film, but it falls flat. The "tadaa" moment is explained away with some ridiculous science fiction. If the true "Secret" of the big trick is some sort of science fiction mumbo jumbo, then why does the film try to be true at all to the art and skill of the magicians up to that point? If you are going to Dissappointing. This film had some great elements that could have lead to a fantastic film, but it falls flat. The "tadaa" moment is explained away with some ridiculous science fiction. If the true "Secret" of the big trick is some sort of science fiction mumbo jumbo, then why does the film try to be true at all to the art and skill of the magicians up to that point? If you are going to allow sci-fi fantasy to come in at the end, then what is the point of the rest of the "how does it work?" plot elements. The film cheats on the very craft it touts to be about.... Aweful. Expand
  3. PaulM.
    Nov 10, 2006
    3
    A cold film full of tricks not real characters. The twists (especially the main one) visible a mile off. A trite ending concluded a disappointing piece.
  4. mb
    Dec 30, 2006
    3
    Ultimately bleak and depressing.
  5. AlexB.
    Oct 21, 2006
    0
    Boring, predictable, terrible characters, slow, pointless. How could ANYONE like this pile?
  6. GaborA.
    Oct 22, 2006
    2
    Atrocious. Nolan is wading in Shyamalan territory with his dissapointing new release. Apart from an uninvolving and senseless plot its just a terrible script. There's probably 4 real scenes in this movie and then hundreds of montages, flashbacks, series of shots, and just general cuts all over the place.
  7. SchuylerC.
    Mar 12, 2007
    4
    A lot of big names but it was very slow moving, I couldn't pay attention to it I must have zoned out for half the movie. It didn't get interesting until they started replicating cats. The plot didn't make much sense I felt like I was high or something and I haven't used drugs in years. Two horrible performing magic rivals who keep killing their stage hand girl friends A lot of big names but it was very slow moving, I couldn't pay attention to it I must have zoned out for half the movie. It didn't get interesting until they started replicating cats. The plot didn't make much sense I felt like I was high or something and I haven't used drugs in years. Two horrible performing magic rivals who keep killing their stage hand girl friends with the same stupid trick, then one is trying to figure out the others secret while he is funding a scientific experiment that replicates and makes things disappear. Why would he even care about anything else. That was basically the highlight of the movie the sci fi element if I had something like that I would create a lot of romantic love slaves of anyone I wanted then disappear. Expand
  8. ArnoldD.
    Nov 5, 2006
    4
    No quest for prestige but an obsessional orientation born of an ultimate quest for power. The dynamic clear in that the intent , the quest for power, is born of the denial of death. The quest is clear, the movie , boring .
  9. AiJ
    Oct 24, 2006
    4
    Let me start off by saying that Chris Nolan is a very skilled director who handles cinematic structure better than most directors around today. I am a great admirer of Memento and Batman Begins and Christian Bale and Hugh Jackman give good performances in this picture. Now if anyone at the beginning of a movie says, "Are you watching closely" as they pan the camera across hundreds of top Let me start off by saying that Chris Nolan is a very skilled director who handles cinematic structure better than most directors around today. I am a great admirer of Memento and Batman Begins and Christian Bale and Hugh Jackman give good performances in this picture. Now if anyone at the beginning of a movie says, "Are you watching closely" as they pan the camera across hundreds of top hats on the ground in the woods, then You Watch Closely! Once I saw the hats again, I had figured out that [***SPOILERS***] Danton was duplicating himself and that Borden did not kill him, but killed his reasonable facsimile. Also, when we see Fallon, Borden's engineer and right hand man, we know that he's obviously, Christian Bale in make up, false hair and glasses. This is the problem with Hollywood filmmaking: audiences are so used to seeing characters in medium shots and close-ups that we start to wonder why a character isn't shot that way and it sends up a red flag. Also, I had to wonder why Fallon was the exact same height as Borden when Michael Caine's character says that Borden is using a double to perform the transporting man illusion. Now, at this point, the conclusion-- or the "prestige" of the transporting man trick and the film itself-- seems rather obvious. I'm not the most intelligent man but I've seen a few films and when the solution to a mystery is so obvious, we all have to wonder, "How it is really going to end?" Or we think, "That ending is so simple, it can't be the true, so I'll go along for the ride". The Prestige manages to reveal the ending halfway through the movie and has no "twist" to make anyone feel that the last hour and 30 minutes was worth sitting through! This movie was "Secret Window" all over again except with better direction. And why didn't they cast Piper Perabo in Scarlett Johansson's role? When are we going to get a non-wooden performance from Scarlett? Is it because she is the cause for so much wood from the men in the audience? Sure she's great to look at but come on! Someone should punch her in the face already. Expand
  10. BrettK
    Oct 28, 2006
    4
    Too long and too predictable. They give away the ending long before the movie is over. Thus, you have to sit and watch over a half an hour of pointless dialogue and plot "twists" for nothing, as it's already been made obvious how the movie will end. Both of the magicians are horrible people, so who cares who wins or loses, lives or dies. A disappointment.
  11. Jan 19, 2015
    4
    The Prestige revolves around 2 magicians who initially be-friend one another but due to an unfortunate event that triggers the worst in both men, they become archrivals. It's rushed but works. The entire film focuses on the attempts of these 2 men to outclass one another and how they end up bringing great pain to themselves. The Premise is quite basic but Nolan juggles multiple story linesThe Prestige revolves around 2 magicians who initially be-friend one another but due to an unfortunate event that triggers the worst in both men, they become archrivals. It's rushed but works. The entire film focuses on the attempts of these 2 men to outclass one another and how they end up bringing great pain to themselves. The Premise is quite basic but Nolan juggles multiple story lines and muddles it in a way that makes it not so easy to follow. This movie is more of a puzzle than a meaningful film. It keeps playing tricks on you but once the novelty wears off, it's easy to see, it's too smart for its own good. The more tricks it plays on you, the more you raise your eyebrow and go, "Hmm, did he need to do that?" because most of these stunts don't contribute too much. In a movie that's so cold at its core, you can't be emotionally invested and these tricks turn frustrating, even annoying. But the 3rd Act is what really killed it for me. The Prestige builds up a lot of suspense in the first 2 Acts and the answer it provides at the end is-"Magic"- and that was so unsatisfying to me. Another major problem I had with it was that in this cold-hearted rivalry between these 2 despicable men, Nolan actually does reveal a winner, which was again very unnecessary. Through the film I thought it was trying to convey, "if you fixate yourself on bringing pain to someone else you end up hurting yourself". But the ending threw that right out of the window.
    The Prestige is defined as the final act of a magic trick that instills fascination; ironically, it's the prestige of this film that let it down. Well the Prestige isn't art but it's still fun to watch; at least the first time.
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Metascore
66

Generally favorable reviews - based on 36 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 26 out of 36
  2. Negative: 1 out of 36
  1. Audiences might enjoy this cinematic sleight of hand, but the key characters are such single-minded, calculating individuals that the real magic would be to find any heart in this tale.
  2. Reviewed by: Dennis Harvey
    40
    Clearly, director Nolan is aiming for something else. But the delight in sheer gamesmanship that marked his breakout "Memento" doesn't survive this project's gimmickry and aspirations toward "Les Miserables"-style epic passion.
  3. Reviewed by: Scott Foundas
    70
    The result is a lopsided yet absorbing movie in which the director is less drawn to his main characters than to those on the periphery.