Caleb’s review published on Letterboxd:
Saving the world from what might have been. The beginning of the the end of a beautiful friendship. Not time travel, but inversion, but actually time travel. Christopher Nolan unhinged. Either the man is a genius or he just thinks he is, either way I don’t think anyone else in this world thinks the way he does. Tenet will not be for everyone. Yes, the mechanics of Nolan’s time travel are a bit complicated. I did not NOT like that aspect, it gives you something to think about. Challenging your preconceived notion of how it should work. Of all the characters, Elizabeth Debicki’s is the only one to really experience any sort of growth, and that’s ok.
The others, John David Washington’s “Protagonist” and Robert Pattinson’s Neil, don’t truly need development - they just need to successfully complete the mission. That’s all you care about as well. That said, Washington and Pattinson have great on screen chemistry. Their development comes with knowledge and the audience learns along with them. However, the sound mix can get in the way of your education in inversion - in true Nolan fashion -making some dialogue unintelligible. Especially so in some important scenes where they are discussing the method of “time travel” and plans to move against the antagonist. The sound also fully immerses you in the giant set pieces like a jumbo jet crashing into a building or the climactic third act “temporal pincer move” which throws you into the middle of a military operation involving people running forwards and backwards in time. It’s mind-boggling and will have you wondering just how the hell they pulled it off.
A second viewing may be required to fully grasp what’s happening in this temporal spy thriller. Though you may not even have the opportunity to experience a first time. I certainly won’t be going back in any time soon. When theaters announced reopening plans, they said masks would be required except in the event of eating or drinking. I get that theaters only make their money off of food, but they have to know that people would abuse this loophole. I personally felt comfortable watching the movie, as I kept my mask on the whole time. In fact wore two different kinds of masks; the normal medical mask and a KN95 which creates a tighter seal. Helped keep my glasses clear from fog and just made me feel safer. But this guy on my row brought in a big bucket of popcorn, a soda and a bunch of candy. Before the previews even began he sat without a mask on, stuffing his face. At points in the movie he wasn’t even eating and didn’t put a mask on. Other people who had snacks eventually did put masks on. Going out to the movies during a pandemic is a personal choice and you may shame me for being selfish or whatever, but at least I’m taking the steps to keep myself and others safe.