Is Christopher Nolan’s Tenet Worth Risking Millions Of Lives?

  • AUTHOR: dua
  • POSTED ON: July 21, 2020

Is it pride, desire, or
simply ignorance? Christopher Nolan is willing to risk everything for the love
of cinema.

There’s no denying that Christopher Nolan is a celebrated filmmaker who has passionate fans all
around the world. His movies like
Dark Knight
, Dunkirk,
have genuinely earned the status of legendary – but does that permits him to risk the lives of millions of people around the world for the
sake of a… movie? 

Image Source – Google | Image by Twitter 

It’s true that we were
all excited to watch Tenet in theatres before the COVID-19 pandemic splashed
dirt on all our plans and confined us into our homes. It’s been over three
months since the theatres have been shut, and of course, we’re all getting
restless and just want to get our lives back into normalcy.

If things had been
normal, we’d be watching Tenet with our family and friends in theatres. But
here’s the thing: the thought of opening theatres and permitting thousands of
people to watch movies together is scary and almost absurd considering the
current scenario. The United States is struck by the second wave, so letting
people sit in close proximity just to watch a film is reckless and dumb.

Yes, we’re getting
impatient and want to unfold all secrecy surrounding the storyline of Tenet.
And let’s face it – it’s an important film for not only the industry but also for the theatre chain as a lot of money is at stake. But when there’s heightened anticipation around the movie, why is
Nolan so adamant that the movie should be released in theatres only? Why isn’t an
online release possible? He has urged that he wants “to show faith in the form and solidarity with exhibitors” and
that’s truly remarkable – but at what cost?

It’s actually insane
that a filmmaker of that caliber, being fully aware of the circumstances, would
be so persistent on releasing the film on 12th of August. What’s
driving this cause? Is it passion because this burning desire is dangerous? Is
it ambition? But how can ambition be so fatal? Or is it blind ignorance
submerged with pride? For now, it feels like it’s a mix of all.

He’s the filmmaker whose
work is thoroughly studied by film students globally. Whether it’s reading and
Nolan: A Critical Study of the Films
or just watching and
dissecting his movies repeatedly as an exercise, it’s evident that the man has
created a cult following. So, what is he trying to prove with this greedy
obsession of a theatrical release?

If the problem is about
the money, then it is plain foolish to go ahead with a theatrical release now because the timing is off and the movie would never recover the money. Under these circumstances, only an online release makes sense.

Honestly, if it’s about
legacy and him trying to be the savior of cinema, then he’s killing his own
dream with his own hands. Does he want to be the first filmmaker who managed to
get thousands of people sick because instead of advocating for public health, he
fought for his film to be released in theatres? Even the thought of this
possibility is concerning.

Now the only problem
with an online release is this: would it manage to bring the kind of revenue
that a theatrical release would in usual circumstances? The feat is challenging
but not impossible. If Nolan goes big with the digital release and put it up
for rental and purchase on iTunes, Vudu or Amazon, then the movie can get at
least 80% of the returns.

Indeed, no
digital release has made that amount of money as of yet. However, no one has
ever released a big-budgeted movie on digital platforms as of yet either. So,
if it’s really about legacy, wouldn’t Nolan want to be the first filmmaker ever to
take that leap of faith? If Nolan actually wants to create impact and change
the face of Hollywood forever, releasing Tenet online is the way to start.

Updated July 21, 2020
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