Be prepared to be confused upon viewing Christopher Nolan’s latest Science Fiction thriller. The mind bending time travel and convoluted plot requires not one rewatch but I’d suggest three or four. Ever since ‘Memento’ has Nolan been fascinated with the concept of time and how it can be manipulated for good or evil.
Without giving too much away of the plot, as if that would help, ‘The Protagonist’ (John David Washington) is a CIA operative who’s been recruited into a shadowy organization known as ‘Tenet’. His task is to investigate a tool of war worse than nuclear power, where time can be ‘inverted’ so objects can move back in time.
‘The Protagonist’ has a partner Neil (Robert Pattinson) who exudes James Bond sauve. They encounter Kat (Elizabeth Debicki), who is the abused wife of a Russian billionaire villain, Sator played by Kenneth Branagh. Kat leads them to Sator who has been using ‘inversion’ for arms dealing.
Tenet is in the ‘Inception’ family, in that characters do share the ‘rules’ of the time game, which does allow the viewer to at least try and keep up. “Don’t try to understand it, just feel it” is a line in the movie. It pretty much sums up ‘Tenet’.
You have to let the movie wash over you, unless you’re an expert on physics or advanced mathematics and can keep up with the dialogue and plot in real time.
As a Director Nolan relishes the big theatre experience, the locations are breath-taking and the scenes stylish. Nothing is off limits, a 747-plane crash, battles in a Soviet Atomic city and giant windmills out in the ocean. The soundtrack is also fantastic, adding nicely to the tension.
Nolan fan boys will love this movie; the message boards will be clogged with theories and sub versions of the plot. ‘Tenet’ is big and bold, but also I hate to say, leaves you cold.
On future rewatches understanding it more might make it more enjoyable but the characters are underdone and beyond “The Protagonist” trying to save the world you don’t feel that invested in him. As a visual experience ‘Tenet’ is epic, as an entertaining movie it’s average.
hallymustang rating : 3/5 📽📽📽