We go to Christopher Nolan movies for specific things: head-spinning twists, bombastic visual effects, and big questions about the nature of reality. All of these come to the fore in Tenet, and the result is naturally confusing.
Time, relativity, and perception of reality are concepts explored in many of Christopher Nolan's films. Tenet is, in part, assembled from many little pieces of those previous works, filtered through a new perspective like a kind of greatest hits reel.
It has the same sense of social responsibility and civic duty featured in his Batman trilogy. It shares some reverse chronology elements with Memento. It at times evokes Dunkirk, a war drama about the indomitable human spirit tested by unprecedented conflict. Interstellar and Inception both involve time manipulation, though the effects in those movies are more about relative acceleration of time into the future, where Tenet portrays time as being flexible in both directions.
Watch the video for explanations to the end of Tenet!
Greatest hits | 0:00
The conflict, streamlined | 0:52
Neil's two-time temporal trickery | 2:31
Old friends | 3:56
The Protagonist claims his title | 5:05
Sator's fate | 6:11
Kat takes control | 7:37
Faith in others | 8:37
Splitting the Algorithm | 9:41
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