Christopher Nolan's Tenet is the first major blockbuster to hit the theaters during our COVID times — Nolanite's may be eager to experience it in the theaters, whereas; I felt more comfortable watching Tenet from the safety of my car at my local Drive-In.
I am thrilled that there is still a local Drive-In Theater less than 40 minutes from my house, which provided me the opportunity to experience Christopher Nolan's (The Dark Knight Trilogy, Inception, and Dunkirk) Tenet on the big screen but from the safety and comfort of my car. After weeks-months of delays, Tenet is the first major Hollywood blockbuster to make a crack at helping filmgoers return to the theaters during this global pandemic. While other countries have excelled at slowing the spread of this virus through a variety of safety measures, testing, masks, and actually listening to our health experts — the United States has failed at every corner. This failure has made it harder for the US to return to a 'new normal.' Where other countries that have succeeded in containment; are now allowed to re-open their theaters at a less health risk than we are. Re-opening theaters in the US has been incredibly risky on a health level and a financial level. The numbers don't lie: Tenet only managed to open with $9.6 million domestically, which makes sense given the circumstances and that people are still not comfortable on returning to the theaters, myself included.
Only 65% of the American and Canadian theaters are operating at 25–40% capacity. During the film's first eleven days, Tenet acquired $20.2 million from 2,810 theaters — while all of the New York, LA, and San Francisco theaters are still closed. Tenet has fared much better overseas — $242 million in other territories. Since we have witnessed Tenet's shaky box office performance, more studios have decided to push their big-budget blockbusters into 2021, giving the US more time to, hopefully, get a hold of this virus. I believe this was a smart move. Studios need theaters, and theaters need studios, but the studios are willing to wait until it's safe, or at least until they can make good money. If you do have a local theater in your neighborhood, I encourage you to buy a gift card to help support them during these troubling times. Finally, let's talk about Tenet: Nolan's latest feature is undoubtedly his weakest film yet — however, that doesn't stop Tenet from still being entertaining, puzzling, and at times, cathartic. Even though Tenet's plot was a bit convoluted, I still might be a little bias when it comes to Nolan movies because I've always welcomed their presence, and maybe it was also the fact that I had not seen a movie on the big screen in seven months. I feel like most of my excitement was returning to see a Hollywood blockbuster on the big screen.
Nevertheless, Tenet displayed some pulp-worthy action spectacles upheld by strong performances from John David Washington and Robert Pattinson. Plus, we cannot forget composer Ludwig Göransson's (Creed and Black Panther) intoxicating score that will chill your bones. Göransson was unable to complete his score in-person due to the US lockdown last February, resulting in him putting together individual recordings of the musicians in their homes to finish the soundtrack. Impressive doesn't even begin to describe what Göransson accomplished with this task, providing us with a mesmerizing score that will send shivers down your spine from the first to the final note. Tenet follows the storyline of an unnamed CIA agent, The Protagonist (a strong Washington), as he embarks on a dangerous mission to prevent the start of World War III. During this mission, The Protagonist discovers a time-bending method allowing the antagonists to move backward through time, achieving their mischievous goal.
Doctor Who explains time better than I do: "People assume that time is a strict progression of cause to effect, but actually from a non-linear, non-subjective viewpoint - it's more like a big ball of wibbly wobbly... time-y wimey... stuff." Along the way, The Protagonist meets Neil (a wonderful Pattinson), who becomes his handler. They also get caught up with a man named Sator (Kenneth Branagh) — who I won't spoil — and his estranged wife, Kat (Elizabeth Debicki). Though Tenet fails to meet the same standard as previous Nolan treats, Tenet still had enough smart action and trippy mind games to keep the ball rolling. I was happy that I got experience Tenet on the big screen in a safe environment. In the end, it's a twilight world out there. I got to experience this movie from the safety of my car at the Skyview Drive-In. If you live in Greater St. Louis area and are itching to see a movie on the big screen but still feel uncomfortable, then I highly recommend attending the Skyview Drive-In. You won't be disappointed.
Tenet is rated PG-13 (Parents Strongly Cautioned) Brief Strong Language, Action, Intense Sequences of Violence, Some Suggestive References.
This time-y wimey movie is directed by Christopher Nolan
Starring John David Washington, Robert Pattinson, Elizabeth Debicki, Kenneth Branagh, Dimple Kapadia, and Aaron Taylor-Johnson.
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