Features and Columns · Movies

Visual Rhymes: The Cinematic Resonances of ‘Tenet’

Because no one is a bigger film dork than filmmakers.
Tenet Resonances
Warner Bros.
By  · Published on June 4th, 2021

Welcome to The Queue — your daily distraction of curated video content sourced from across the web. Today, we’re watching a video essay that looks at the cinematic resonances in — and influences on — Christopher Nolan’s Tenet.

Very few filmmakers create within a vacuum. I challenge you to think of a filmmaker who, by and large, is not enthusiastic, open, and enamored with their own cinematic influences. Movie-making is an inherently referential art, and a lot of it rhymes with each other, intentionally or otherwise.

And sure, there are downsides to this distinctly post-modern notion that everything is a remix. In certain instances, plagiarism can masquerade under the cover of homage. There is also the lurking fear that too much intertextuality can stifle genuinely new ideas. But I think we’d be kidding ourselves to argue that filmmakers don’t watch films and that these films don’t then affect their own creative output.

It’s no secret that Christopher Nolan is a passionate cinephile. What is Inception if not a love letter to Satoshi Kon’s Paprika? How can you watch Interstellar and not see the connective tissue to the likes of 2001: A Space Odyssey, Solaris, and Slaughterhouse-Five?

Noting cinematic rhymes and visual similarities isn’t necessarily pejorative. Instead, I’d argue such comparisons merely acknowledge the fruitful reality that art influences artists. And that’s precisely why videos like the one below, remarking on the cinematic similarities within Nolan’s Tenet to LooperTo Live and Die in L.A., Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol, the James Bond movies Goldfinger and Casino Royale, and many more, are so valuable.

Watch here “Déjà Vu: Tenet” here:

Who made this?

Paris-based actress and videographer Candice Drouet is an old favorite around these parts. She has worked with the likes of Adidas and Fandor, and she currently collaborates with the French premium television channel Canal+, for which she created today’s video about the cinematic resonances of Tenet. You can follow Drouet on Instagram here. And on Twitter here. And you can check out her back catalog of videos on Vimeo here.

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Based in the Pacific North West, Meg enjoys long scrambles on cliff faces and cozying up with a good piece of 1960s eurotrash. As a senior contributor at FSR, Meg's objective is to spread the good word about the best of sleaze, genre, and practical effects.