Tay’s review published on Letterboxd:
viewed @ Mission Tiki Drive-In—highly recommend to any folks in the LA area if you are looking to see this safely!
but whether you should see this... eh. there are some deeply interesting concepts here buried underneath a bloated, confusing, and muddled script. plot makes sense—any sort of “Tenet Explained!” video will do the trick of connecting some more complicated dots—but what is going on with the narrative and pacing? the most mind-boggling parts of Tenet aren’t anything to do with entropy or temporal fallout, but with basic who/what/where questions.
Inception and Interstellar excel in their innovations and grand ideas because their fundamentals are stable, sure, certain. Tenet feels like you’re being dunked repeatedly underwater and being asked to solve a math problem when all you want is to catch your breath and orient yourself on steady ground. i don’t think it’s fun or new to make your audience feel dumb just because you’ve convoluted the basic narrative arc to the point where an hour in, your audience is asking “who is this? why are they working together?” it’s just... bad writing, of which there is plenty here. my cup of exposition runneth over! yet still somehow The Protagonist and co. don’t explain things in a helpful way... like thank you for explaining nuclear decay but could you also maybe mention whoooo tall drink of water Elizabeth Debicki is supposed to be and how Goya is involved??
i will give it a point bc conceptually this is super cool and the red/blue scene is very Sexy. funniest scene of the year happens toward the end when Kenneth Branagh does something and the audio cuts in such a way it couldn’t be better comedic timing if one tried