Having seen Tenet recently from the relative safety of my apartment, I’m glad that I didn’t risk my life to see it in a theater because it’s not only too long – at 2 1/2 hours it could have easily been whittled down at least a half hour – but it’s also more than a little bit pretentious.
This self-indulgence isn’t unusual for Christopher Nolan but when a studio is investing somewhere in the ballpark of $205 million dollars in a movie, it’s not too much to ask that it undergo more judicious editing.
And it’s worth mentioning that I don’t think any movie should last that long and watching it at home – where you can pause it whenever convenient – you really feel the length.
And if an overlong runtime weren’t enough of an issue, Nolan also chose to write an overly convoluted story, turning it to more of a chore watching a movie had any right to be.
Though that’s not to say that it isn’t watchable though it’s not close to being as clever as Nolan seems to think it is.
Though it is a gorgeous movie – you can see every penny of that $205 million on screen – with great music by Ludwig Göransson (Black Panther) though it takes a level of patience I’m not at all sure most people have to get through it.
In fact, the movie is oddly similar to Marvel Studios’ Doctor Strange (2016) in some very crucial ways (let’s just say that some people say that the whole folding buildings and such from that movie were inspired by Nolan’s Inception, though Nolan returns the favor and takes Doctor Strange‘s third act as a crucial plot device for his entire movie).
I find it fascinating that Warner Bros would release such a film in the United States during the height of coronavirus epidemic because if you’re going to potentially risk Covid-19 I’d at least hope it were for a movie that was less demanding.