Tenet

Tenet ★★★

Nolan takes the spectacle of Dunkirk and strips away that film’s harrowing emotional resonance, simultaneously updating his temporal obsessions in an ouroboros iteration of Interstellar that neglects even to hide its narrative contrivances. Tenet, a globe-trotting espionage tale, frustratingly dodges the scientific and philosophical implications of tinkering with time; “inversion”, Nolan’s latest brainchild, is less an essential conceit dismantled and reassembled by traditional storytelling structures than it serves as a conceptually audacious fantasy upon which are built scattershot, neurotically detailed puzzle-pieces not meant to be pieced together separately but ingested hazily, en masse. It’s quite possibly his worst — and most overtly clinical — film, but there’s still an admittedly fetishistic pleasure watching these technological battles go boom boom.

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