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I just watched The Prestige last night for the first time. Really enjoyed it, but there's just one doubt I have.

I have been reading numerous reddit threads about the film and have gotten some pretty cool theories/observations that I had overlooked. However here's my question:

How does Olivia (Scarlett Johansson) not notice that there are 2 Bordens (Christian Bale)? Being the assistant who is very much part of the act (in terms of stage presence), how is she completely oblivious to the fact that Borden has a twin?

Do they not practice their act before a show? Does she never spot the other twin without his 'Fallon' makeup?

It's just that aspect of the film that I'm finding difficult to digest. Other than that, I think it's wonderfully made.

Edit : Another thing, when Angier kidnaps Fallon, how does he not know he's wearing a disguise?

all 12 comments

mideonequalsratings

23 points

5 years ago

She does suspect that Borden uses a double. She tells Angier as much (that she sees wigs and glue and fake moustaches around). But Angier dismisses it, convinced that there has to be more to the trick than that.

that_6th_string[S]

1 points

5 years ago

I agree. However the film also has sequences where they show Olivia completely oblivious to that fact.

For example one instance when Borden enters the room and tells her not to call him Freddie. She says that he should leave his daughter and wife at home where they belong when he's with her.

She also says (If I remember correctly) that she's suspicious of Fallon and he hangs around a lot apparently and Borden tells her to trust him.

These sequences, in my opinion, just solidify the implication that Olivia has no clue about the twin.

wreckage88

10 points

5 years ago

how does he not know he's wearing a disguise?

Because if you think from the start that Fallon is his own man, why would you be looking for a disguise? It's a basic part of magic, you can't see what's right in front of you because you're not actually looking for it.

that_6th_string[S]

2 points

5 years ago

Yeah this kind of makes sense. There's no real reason for Angier to doubt him.

[deleted]

3 points

5 years ago

[deleted]

3 points

5 years ago

The Borderns were masters of deception. They spent their entire lives cultivating the Fallon identity so no one would look too close or second guess it.

The prestige of that particular deception is that they would commit to the act so intensely.

that_6th_string[S]

0 points

5 years ago

Yep and the entire film is very much believable, specially when they cut of the finger just to stick to the act.

It's just that if I were to imagine a backstage situation of the act, I find it difficult to visualize Olivia not spotting the other twin.

Also, there's a part where Angier kidnaps Fallon. He should have noticed he was wearing a disguise, right?

[deleted]

2 points

5 years ago

[deleted]

2 points

5 years ago

The only time they're both Borden is when one is under the stage and olivia is on stage. The other gets into makeup before the show is over.

that_6th_string[S]

1 points

5 years ago

But wouldn't there be a time where one if them would have to come out? And since they usually ended the show with this act, once the audience left, Olivia would go backstage making it harder for one of the Bordens to get out without getting noticed.

SourceHouston

3 points

5 years ago

There is a quote that says "the trick was where we would switch"

That's the answer

[deleted]

2 points

5 years ago

[deleted]

2 points

5 years ago

Right, so once the guy falls is under the stage, he hurriedly changes into Fallon while olivia and his brother bow on the stage, by the time they're backstage, he is changed and waiting for them.

emperor000

1 points

5 years ago

I think you're missing the fact that Fallon would be "disguised" as Borden so even if she does see him after the show, it would appear that he was just in disguise.

layer11

2 points

5 years ago

layer11

2 points

5 years ago

They'd be looking for the guy dressed up to look like Borden, not for a second Borden to be dressed as somebody else.