Reviews

Tenet Review

Tenet offers you not just an action fest, but a new universe to dig into and that alone is worth the jump into this crazy movie.

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I want to preface everything you are about to read below with some background. First, I have a Christopher Nolan bias. I can see the flaws of his movies, but generally speaking, they never overcome the things that I love about his movies. In my book, he is one of the best at creating something big and explosive while also trying to create something with substance. He’s the blockbuster auteur. Second, I watched this movie at home well after the theatrical release which meant even while avoiding full on reviews or spoilers, I did hear rumblings about problems that some viewers of the movie had. Third, along with watching it at home I watched 75% of the movie with subtitles on.

ALLLLRIGHT, with all of that out of the way let’s get to this. I watched Tenet last night. At the time my thoughts were, I liked this movie a good deal. After a night of sleep and a day to let this movie rattle in my brain more. I love this movie. It’s Nolan’s deep world building and unique concepts dialed up to 11. Which for a story and world building creative like myself it’s like a drug to my veins. I couldn’t get enough. It’s shot beautifully, with composition of scenes both capturing bold images and reality warping action. It’s score it’s loud booming Nolan but with a techno spy thriller vibe. Finally, it’s cast also hits a typical Nolan high of excellent high caliber actors getting to play in a crazy action heavy world.

I don’t want to spoil too much of the plot at all, but for the sake of discussion of other elements here’s a brief idea of what you are getting yourself into. Tenet is a cold war spy movie where instead of trying to stop some nuclear holocaust, it’s a cold war about the flow of time. You read that right, the flow of time. The normal flow we all know and an inverted version of time, where objects and people inverted are experiencing time backwards. Where everything, movement, flow of energy, life and death, it’s all playing in reverse. Why this is happening, who is fighting for what? I will leave that to you to find out.

Anyways this long explanation was all to let me say the action is this movie is insane. Have you ever seen a car chase where several cars are moving in reverse time reacting as if they are course correcting to things that have already happened to them but not to you? How about a fist fight where one person is fighting as if they are leaning into punches or stabs because this has already happened to them? It’s at times difficult to comprehend but it makes for something you just haven’t seen before. It makes the action interesting not just on the first watch but on several watches later. You have something new to focus on, a perspective shift. That is awesome and I love this movie for this mind twisting way of seeing these things.

A complaint that was in my head from the start of watching the movie was for many the movie didn’t make sense, where did some people come from at the end of the movie? Why was this event happening? So on and so forth. Basically the thought in my head was be prepared for this movie to not make sense. As I watching though, that was never a problem for me. I don’t know what was so difficult for some other viewers to follow but most of it contextually from the world the movie establishes answers most of the simple questions to me. The making sense of the action is what is more of a challenge. Where at the start of the movie there were moments where I had no idea what I was watching but as I watched the movie and learned more with the lead character called the Protagonist (played by the excellent John David Washington) it made sense to me just as much as it was making sense to him. Which shocker makes for a better viewing experience over knowing everything detail beforehand like some must have wanted.

The other major complaint of the movie I had noticed involved the audio of actor’s voices. Basically the audio mixing sucks. This, I agree with 150%. I don’t know why the mix of dialog is always such a pain point for Nolan movies but they tend to be his Achilles’ heel. This is still true hear. It was very inconsistent between scenes and more of an issue at the start of the movie. I tried watching the movie without subtitles but a quarter of the way flipped them on and kept it that way till the end of the movie when it was mostly action. So caution to those who watch this movie, you should flip those subtitles on because it will make taking in the plot of this movie a whole lot easier.

I could and would love to talk more about this movie, but to say too much would just spoil the fun. If you are like me and like Nolan’s body of work, Tenet hits all the Nolan highs and the pesky audio mixing lows. For movie watchers who have a low attention span, like several of Nolan’s other movies this may not be the one for you unless you willingly accept that you won’t get the movie and just want to watch the spectacle. Which make no mistake this movie brings it in that regard. It’s loud, and it’s unlike anything you have seen before. For those though interested in jumping into a unique time bending world, Tenet offers you not just an action fest, but a new universe to dig into and that alone is worth the jump into this crazy movie.

Preview

2020 Movie Preview

2020 is upon us! Which means we have another year of amazing movies to look forward to! 2019 was a pretty impressive year so let’s see what 2020 has in store. Below are some of the movies I’m looking forward to this year.


A Quiet Place: Part II – March 20th

I loved 2018’s A Quiet Place. John Krasinski did a great job creating a tense horror movie that also happened to have a lot of heart with the Abbott family. The world he created was interesting, like a new take on zombies. From the looks of this first trailer it appears that Krasinki is looking at the same page book that the zombie genre has used when your characters have learned a true strategy against the nightmare, reveal that humans are just as bad as monsters. I’m in, but then they threw in the talented Cillian Murphy? Yeah I’m in double for this one.

The New Mutants – April 3rd

What a wild journey this movie has had. Originally it was supposed to come out in 2018, then it was delayed for “retooling”. Then Fox was sold to Disney, then it was delayed again, and now the word is the retooling (cough producer meddling cough) has been thrown out the window and we are set to see the original vision of this movie. That alone makes me interested to see what the fuss was about, but really I was excited for this movie since they announced it. A coming of age horror movie with mutants from the X-Men Universe? Yeah, that sounds crazy awesome.

No Time To Die – April 10th

First there was Casino Royale. Welcome back Bond. Then there was Quantum of Solace. You okay there Bond? Then Skyfall. Bravo James. And then there was Spectre. Uuuh what happened?

It’s been a mixed bag with the Daniel Craig Bond films, but even with the bad ones, it’s always a good time to see Daniel Craig in the role. i have higher hopes for this one, I enjoy the visual style of director Cary Joji Fukunaga, and the new cast members (Ana de Armas, Rami Malek) are both excellent actors that I can’t wait to see in the world of Jams Bond. This is Craig’s last go as 007 and another odd numbered entry so I’m hoping all of these ingredients gives us another great film before the end.

Black Widow – May 1st

And the Marvel Train keeps on moving! Black Widow is giving me serious Winter Soldier vibes, which I absolutely loved. It’s been a long while since Marvel has made a movie that I haven’t enjoyed and this entry does not look like it’s going to break that streak. I wasn’t sure how interesting a Black Widow movie could be when they first announced it, but if this trailer is anything to go by, it’s going to be another fun ride.

Wonder Woman 1984 – June 5th

Two female leading superhero movies within a month of each other? What kind of madness is this? The best kind if you ask me. Wonder Woman 1984 looks like an even more fun movie than the original. What I loved about the original, the chemistry between Diana and Steve, is back. Add in the fun 80’s vibes and it’s looking like this sequel might rise above the original. I’m crossing my fingers for a Captain America style growth to this franchise with this second entry. Here’s hoping.

Ghostbusters: Afterlife – July 10th

I never did see that odd Ghostbusters reboot that came out a few years back. It didn’t feel like the old Ghostbusters in terms of mixing horror and comedy. Luckily this new entry, that’s a continuation of the classics looks to strike that balance that made the originals great. I’m also liking the Stranger Things / Goonies vibes with focusing on a younger cast of characters.

Tenet – July 17th

Nolan is one of my favorite directors. His movies are huge, pull off insane filmmaking feats, have great ensemble casts, and booming scores. Tenet looks insane. Like a time bending spy movie. Almost like taking bits of Inception and Interstellar into one movie. I’m also really excited to see more of John David Washington and the future Batman Robert Pattinson.

Last Night in Soho – September 25th

An Edgar Wright horror movie? The same guy who made Shuan of the Dead, Scott Pilgrim vs. the World, and Baby Driver? Yeah that alone is all I need to hear. His movies have a unique voice that I thoroughly enjoy. Also it happens to star two actresses that have been on a solid rise over the last couple of years between Anya Taylor-Joy and Thomasin McKenzie. I can’t wait to check out what Wright has in store for us next.

Godzilla vs. Kong – November 20th

This is the title fight we have all been waiting for. Rocky vs. Creed? No way. This is the heavy heavy heavy heavy weight. The Godzilla and Kong movies have been a lot of fun, and I still can’t believe we are finally going to get to see these massive titans go head to head this year. I got my money on the ape, always bet on the underdog.

Dune – December 20th

I’ve never read the book Dune. I hear it’s pretty great for fans of sci-fi. Even so, this is my most anticipated movie of the year because of the man directing it. Denis Vileneuve. The guy is a movie making master as far as I’m concerned. His last three movies? Sicario, Arrival, and Blade Runner: 2049. Those are some top tier movies there. Then there is the cast of this monster of a movie: Timothee Chalamet, Rebecca Ferguson, Oscar Isaac, Zendaya, Jason Momoa, Josh Brolin, Dave Bautista, Javier Bardem, Stellen Skarsgard, I could keep going and going with this one. It’s nuts. BUT WAIT, there’s more. Hans Zimmer is handling the score. Yeah just take all the money, I’m there opening night.