The Prestige

Factual error: When Angier and Cutter are looking for a new workshop they enter a room, with a fully glassed wall on one side. A very modern white radiator is in the room. (00:35:00)


Factual error: When Robert Angiers (The Great Danton) meets Nikola Tesla for the first time at the laboratory in Colorado Springs, Tesla makes his grand entrance by walking straight through the crackling electrical discharge arcs of a full-size, fully-powered Tesla Coil. This is impossible, given that Tesla is not protected in any way from the multi-million-volt arcs of electricity and radio-frequency energy. In reality, an unprotected human being would suffer instant heart failure from the high-voltage discharge, and internal organs would literally cook from the extreme radio-frequencies. Oddly enough, the myth that an unprotected human being could survive within the Tesla Coil's discharge field was inadvertently started by Tesla himself, in real life, when he posed for double-exposure publicity photos that appear to show Tesla casually sitting and reading a book within the active discharge field.

Charles Austin Miller
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Suggested correction: Nikola Tesla, in this movie, is building a machine that uses electrical discharges for teleportation/duplication. The electrical currents he passes through are from the machine and not a fully powered Tesla coil, or magnifying transmitter. Next to that, at radio frequency the damage to the skin can be decreased by having a small metal object with you to deter the current and evenly disperse it over the body. Doing it just this once to show the effects is dangerous but not directly harmful. Since Tesla is an expert at the field he knows what frequencies are harmful and how to take precautions. He of course teaches those to the Great Danton who later on passes into electrical arcs himself for the trick.


The original submission is 100% correct as a factual error. The fictional correction might serve to explain a plot hole, but a fictional explanation does not negate the fact that a human being would die almost immediately within such a discharge field in real life.

Charles Austin Miller

Except its not "such" a discharge field. Its the same type of arc that Danton passes through himself every night in his show. Like I said, in the movie its not a fully powered tesla coil but a fictional device, thus any real life errors are irrelevant.


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