The Prestige Film Analysis Essay

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Film Studies Coursework Scene Micro Analysis: The Prestige (2006).

Analysis of cinematography and sound in The Prestige

The vision Christopher Nolan had for The Prestige (2006) was to add to the outbreak of street magician film, whilst playing a large dramatic subplot equal in grandeur to the magical performances within the film. In the final sequence of the film, I will analyse how the cinematography and sound resolves the plot so that it summarises the themes present in the film, whilst also invoking a response from the audience. Nolan predominantly uses close up shots, non-diegetic sound (music) and dialogue collaboratively to convey the dramatic, personal subplot of the characters and their relationships, whilst appealing to the audience bringing forth an emotional response from the audience. The heavy, slow, dramatic atmosphere of the ending sequence uses various techniques to summarise and uncover the underlying mysteries of the events throughout the film and consolidate themes introduced during the exposition.

Nolan opens with an eye level, close up shot of Borden (Christian Bale) from Fallon’s (Christian Bale) perspective whilst he apologizes to Borden, this shot in the jail puts emphasis on their dialogue and the intimacy of
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While the spotlight on his face, Borden whispers to the guard, “Are you watching closely?” This repeats the first enigmatic line of the film. At the beginning of the film, this statement was to inform the audience to watch closely to uncover its mysteries, the lighting on his face also contributing to the importance of his words. However, at this stage in the film, the secrets are about to be revealed, alerting the audience that something spectacular is to come, the prestige of the trick. This phrase also reinforces the fact Borden will die; the character will have no escape. Once again, creating an emotional response from the
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