I’ve watched this once since the review below but didn’t feel I had anything to add except that I found it even more hypnotic and brilliant. I was worried on this viewing from that first brief shot of the hats – suddenly, I found, I got it, and I felt like the girl midway when Bale shows her how the gunshot trick works, “When you know how it works, suddenly it’s all so dull …”. Don’t get me wrong, the technical stuff and performances still wowed me, but I worried, as I do every time I watch my favourite movies, maybe the spark was gone.
Then came the last half hour, and suddenly to my joy I found it still somehow managed to mystify me. There are still plenty more viewings in this one, I’m sure, and it is by far one of the best films of the last 10 years.
January 30th, 2007:
Like most Christopher Nolan works, this will take a few more viewings to really get the most out of, so I kind of find myself stuck for what to say about it right now, except that it’s an absolutely hypnotic, mind-blowing delight and the two tiny technical Oscar nods, which it’d better effin’ win, are an insult to one of the best movies of 2006, if not of all time.
At the end I felt kind of like the theatre guy midway who leases theatre space to Jackman’s character, but only after the big trick is demonstrated to him. “I’m sorry,” he says, clearly shaken, “it’s been a long time since I saw real magic,” (couldn’t find the actual quote anywhere but I think that’s pretty close).
Most impressive of all to me, though, was that – clever, clever me – I thought I’d guessed the twists and turns so many times it’s embarrassing, yet the movie always had one up on me. This is truly magnificent stuff in which even Scarlett Johansson fails to annoy. Oh, and Bowie is fine, btw, I don’t understand the whining of some people.