The Prestige Ending Explained - Nolan on Identity

What makes a person who they are? This question lies at the heart of The Prestige, Christopher Nolan’s 2006 movie about two warring magicians, played by Hugh Jackman and Christian Bale, who risk everything to become the master of their craft. Like a talented illusionist himself, Nolan blurs the line between appearance and reality until we, the viewer, begin to question our own understanding of identity. Is it based on a soul or some immutable essence? Or do we only become ourselves through the roles we play? Here’s The Take on how Nolan explores this theme in The Prestige, as well his other films like Memento, The Dark Knight, and Inception—and how this may be The Prestige’s most impressive reveal.

Christopher Nolan: Style & Technique


Film Analysis

NEW | Staff Picks


Psychology, Identity, and The Self

Story Analysis: Case Studies

The Take | Creator Spotlight


Psychological Thriller

Christopher Nolan

The Prestige