I was recommended to watch this movie. After watching it I am still wondering if this is a movie about Tesla or not. Ok the positive stuff first. It is a nicely done movie. It is about to competing magicians(!!) over the year that envy and hate each others. The story constantly tries to pull the magic tricks on the viewers as well, pulling out twists and surprises all the time. The pictures, the music, the acting all work really nice.
Now to the bad part: I really has to put the emphasizes on all these things as there seems to be a problem in modern film making that one has so much resources in making over perfect staged movies but one seem to forget a lot of things that makes a movie good: first off, this is or seem to be a rival movie so the two magicians actually already dislike each other even before the first accident happens. In the beginning the quick swaps between the characters and the time jumps confuses us as watchers and we are not given a soft enough introduction of the characters too keep up the patch. (This is similar to the movie The Departed). While this is extremely irritating I think the movie gambles on the fact that after a while we will get the hang of it and then the movie can continue in the same pace, swapping places, time, and pouring out strange twists.
There is almost no character development in this movie. Anybody in the movie industry should know that one of the key factors to a successful movie is character development, the only thing I see in this movie is one of the magicians going from "not wanting to get his hands dirty" to the opposite, but it happens in a snap and there is no real explanation why.
The movie is way to long, the movie tries to be built up as an epic story, the problem is that the movie is built up by the same blocks all the time, rivalry, fight, surprise twist and than more rivalry. The story simply progress by repeating it self for more than two hours - and in the end I wonder what is it the movie tries to tell us?
The morale of the movie is failing, sometimes there is none; sometimes it tries to be some. However unlike Asian movies which can have strange morality lines, the western movie industry seems not to be able to do this as well and we get something of a schizophrenic taste in our mouth.
I think it is actually trying to tell us what a great wizard Tesla was, and in such the movie is in fact perfect despite its faults. I also think that the movie is playing with us on other levels as well, and in a way the rivalry is maybe also a part of another trick? but I will not say which one - if so - the movie receives another plus point from me.
Although the movie is a bit to long, I think you will enjoy it, together with a magic friend.