Oppenheimer Is Only the Latest In Christopher Nolan’s Award-Winning Career

Oppenheimer Is Only the Latest In Christopher Nolan’s Award-Winning Career

1

Following (1998)

Nolan’s directorial debut follows a writer in search of an idea for a new novel. He follows random people as they go about their day, trying to find any kind of inspiration. But his new habit goes awry when he inadvertently involves himself in the criminal underworld.

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2

Memento (2000)

One of the first Nolan films that’ll have you scratching your head (in a good way), Memento is a mind-bending flick all about memory and seeing what you want to see. A man with short-term memory loss (he can’t keep new ideas in his head for longer than a few moments) sets out on a quest to find the men who killed his wife and gave him a life-altering head injury.

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3

Insomnia (2002)

Fans of True Detective: Night Country will enjoy this psychological cat-and-mouse thriller starring Al Pacino and Robin Williams as a detective investigating the murder of a young girl in Alaska, and his chief suspect. In a similar vein to True Detective, the cops aren’t entirely innocent in their search for the truth, which only makes the film all the more thrilling.

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4

Batman Begins (2005)

The first in Nolan’s highly acclaimed Dark Knight trilogy, Batman Begins stars Christian Bale as the one and only Bruce Wayne/Batman. A star-studded cast including Michael Caine, Katie Holmes, and Gary Oldman make up many of Bruce’s allies. And new Best Actor winner Cillian Murphy—a common figure in Nolan’s work—is the main antagonist as Scarecrow.

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5

The Prestige (2006)

Bale and Caine return for yet another Nolan psychological thriller in The Prestige. Bale stars opposite Hugh Jackman as they play two rival magicians who fight over a coveted teleporting trick. It’s the first Nolan film to delve into a historical setting, and it doesn’t disappoint.

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6

The Dark Knight (2008)

One of the films Nolan is best known for, The Dark Knight once again stars Bale as the caped crusader alongside many of the returning cast of Batman Begins. It also stars Heath Ledger as the Joker, in what’s one of the best supervillain performances of all time (and won the Best Supporting Actor Oscar after his tragic death in early 2008). If you want to see superhero films at their very best, The Dark Knight is one of the most celebrated films in the genre.

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7

Inception (2010)

A film that still brings up debate to this day, Inception stars Leonardo DiCaprio, with Tom Hardy, Elliot Page, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, and Cillian Murphy. You may come away from Inception a little confused, but it’ll only make you want to watch it again and again. In this sci-fi thriller, a man gets a team together to hijack a businessman’s mind, delving into his dreams to unlock his deepest secrets. But the heist leader’s own personal demons threaten the entire job.

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8

The Dark Knight Rises (2012)

The final installment in The Dark Knight Trilogy, Bale returns as Batman, this time going up against Tom Hardy as Bane. In a world where MCU movies’ arcs span decades and DC has had to overhaul its entire cinematic division to bring audiences back, it’s refreshing to know there’s at least one solid superhero trilogy that has a strong beginning, middle, and end all the way through.

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9

Interstellar (2014)

Matthew McConaughey, Anne Hathaway, Jessica Chastain, and more star in this sci-fi drama about time, family, and loss. Forget going to the moon; Interstellar follows humanity’s last chance to discover an inhabitable planet. A team of astronauts is sent to look at all viable options, even if that means leaving everyone they love behind. The film garnered five nominations at the Academy Awards.

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10

Dunkirk (2017)

While he’s best known for carrying the psychological thriller genre (and dabbling in action and sci-fi as well), Nolan hit it out of the park with Dunkirk. The historical war film depicts the evacuation of Dunkirk in World War II and stars an ensemble cast, with a mix of greener stars (Fionn Whitehead, Harry Styles, Barry Keoghan, and Tom Glynn-Carney) and more seasoned actors (Tom Hardy, Kenneth Branagh, and Cillian Murphy). While the film didn’t win Best Picture at the 90th Academy Awards, it went home with three awards.

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11

Tenet

The height of Nolan’s WTF brand of movies, Tenet may not be your favorite of the director’s on your first watch, but it’s an unforgettable film that will stick with you—and almost immediately make you want to watch again (and maybe a few more times after that too). Starring John David Washington, Elizabeth Debicki, and Robert Pattinson, it’s a time-travel heist film you’ll have to see to believe.

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12

Oppenheimer

A film that needs little introduction, Oppenheimer is Nolan at his best. Plus, it serves as a career high for actor Cillian Murphy, whose years as a supporting character in many of Nolan’s films finally resulted in a starring role (and one that won him Best Actor, at that). Robert Downey Jr. also nabbed a Best Supporting Actor award for his role in the film.

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