In Which Wolverine and Batman are Total Dicks to One Another

Went to see The Prestige last night, and I dug it quite a lot. Batman and Wolverine are both excellent, Michael Caine is as good as ever, Scarlett Johannsen is quite good in a small role and, of course, quite lovely to behold. It's also nice to see David Bowie in a movie and not have to spend two hours unable to look away from his mule knuckle. Also nice to see Andy Serkis getting work from someone besides Peter Jackson. The plot turned kind of science-fictiony partway through, which bothered Emily, but did not bother me. Some aspects of the inevitable surprise ending are a bit Shyamalanian - kind of forced and meant to be surprising but ultimately predictable. Still, it's a fairly minor flaw in an overall outstanding movie.

It's kind of difficult to write much about this movie because it's similar in so many ways to The Illusionist. A lot of the ideas and themes in both movies are very similar. Both movies even used Ricky Jay as a technical advisor (Jay even has a small role as the magician that both Batman and Wolverine work for early on in The Prestige). A lot of what I might write about this movie, I already wrote a month ago. And this isn't like comparing Deep Impact (kinda dopey and forgetable) with Armageddon (willfully stupid and almost insultingly bad), as both of these magician movies are quite good. The key difference is that The Illusionist is a love story and The Prestige is a hate story. It's difficult to pick sides in The Prestige, as neither of the leads is terribly sympathetic. Not only are Wolverine and Batman, as noted in the title, total dicks to one another, but they're also total dicks to pretty much everyone around them, too. Obsession is a key element in both movies - but where Eisenheim is obsessed with saving his true love in The Illusionist, here Wolverine and Batman are obsessed with destroying each other. Both movies have similar themes, but take them in interestingly different directions.

The Wolverine/Batman pairing, as you can probably tell, amuses me to no end. It's almost as good as the 1994 romantic comedy Speechless, in which Batman (Michael Keaton) and Superman (Christopher Reeve) compete for the affections of Geena Davis.

Wolverine is a busy boy these days. We also saw the trailer for The Fountain, starring Hugh Jackman and Rachel Weisz, which looks fucking awesome. Also the trailer for Mel Gibson's Apocalypto, which looks very strange but also potentially pretty good.