Allow me to begin the analysis with a confession. Six months later, I went back into a movie theater, and the moment I did, I felt tremendous joy, not only for the taste of popcorn, but also for the need to escape this complicated moment and immerse myself in the whirlwind of emotions that only these cinemas make us feel. But at the same time, I felt empty, not being comforted by a crowd of people, something that Tenet would easily achieve, especially on the opening day.
And there would be no better way to return, with a film by the award-winning filmmaker Christopher Nolan, which manages to put several on my list of favorites. In addition, I went in the purest possible state, without watching any trailers and without any expectations. The truth is that Tenet is not Nolan’s riskiest film, I manage to put several on a higher level, but that does not invalidate or deprive him of any value.
Here and there we see the finger of other films by the director, but Tenet manages to be unique. The narrative explores one of the themes most addressed by Nolan, the manipulation of time and space, but through a single lens. It is known that Nolan likes to play with the viewers’ minds, and during the two and a half hours of film we are bombarded with concepts and theories, causing our brain to melt slowly, in a pleasant feeling and that we would like to have no end.
This is one of its main brands, which puts it on another level: the focus on the plot. At no time did I empathize with any character, in fact, I left the movie theater without remembering the name of the protagonist, played by John David Washington. And do you know why? Because it is never mentioned, and even if at first glance it turns out to be an unimportant detail, it fits brilliantly into what your life is.
His performance grows as the film unfolds (I thought it was a brutal casting error, something unusual), unlike Robert Pattinson, who wins us over immediately with his presence and qualities of interpretation. Still, there is not much room for individual sparkles, many of the characters end up being average, starting with the great antagonist, but it is more of a demonstration that the narrative was put in the foreground, being it that guides us from beginning to end.
Visually it is exactly what we expected from a Nolan film. Soft colors, dynamic and expert camera work and several incredible action sequences, involving war, hand-to-hand fighting and car chases. If we look at Inception and Interstellar, where the director uses and abuses special effects, Tenet turns out to be the one who gives us to such manipulation of time and space in a more real way, more land to earth.
Regarding the sound component, this is yet another masterpiece by the entire production team. It is difficult to explain without ending up missing one or another narrative detail, but it is a whole experience that at one point I imagined myself enjoying the film without speaking, just sound. And despite the absence of Hans Zimmer, a composer who walks side by side with Nolan, it was Ludwig Göransson’s turn to show all his talent (after the phenomenal work with The Mandalorian) and deliver a powerful and unique soundtrack.
Tenet is another of the great works of Christopher Nolan, who shows us again that cinema does not live only on adapted reboots and arguments, delivering an original story that goes hand in hand with its fetish of manipulating time and space. Focused entirely on the narrative, it has interpretations capable of John David Washington and Robert Pattinson, combined with the director’s unique cinematic style and a brilliant sound component. Tenet is not Nolan’s masterpiece, but he is the nominee for the film of the year.