How Christopher Nolan’s Iconic Movies Changed Cinema

Nolan! This name has been chanted on and on many times in cinema that it has become a regular pop culture reference. Christopher Nolan, a director whose work spans over a whopping three decades. He has created films that deal with concepts of time, existentialism, and the psychological questioning of reality and how we perceive it. Not only has he directed his work, but he has been responsible for some of the best screenplay along with his brother, Jonathan Nolan, who together have written some staggering scenes that are regarded as iconic today.

The best thing about Nolan as a director is that he likes to production as real as possible. If a particular sequence can be performed without a green screen or the help of any computerized editing, then Nolan would perform that stunt in real-time. But now, we have to look at some of Nolan’s best films to see how brilliant of a director he is and the heights he takes his imagination to deliver a story that can stun the audience. Here are some of the best Christopher Nolan movies ever made:

The Prestige

Arguably to be Christopher Nolan’s best film, this movie takes on the story of two rivaled magicians, Alfred Borden and Robert Angier, to perform tricks that outdo the other and impress the audience until one doesn’t accept defeat. The movie blends well with the philosophical brand of epistemology as Nolan tests the limits of both characters and creates a striking tragedy that intensifies the storyline for the audience.

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It keeps up the rivalry until the final scene of the movie, and where one of them emerges victorious. This movie is one to put on the list for all Nolan lovers. The film stars Christian Bale, High Jackman, Scarlett Johansson, and Michael Caine in the main roles.

The Dark Knight

Again, considered by many as Nolan’s apex mountain, The Dark Knight proves itself of its cinematic appraisal as it wins the hearts of millions and millions of people. The unforgettable performances of characters such as Joker, Two-Face, Scarecrow, and others make this movie what it is.

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It shows Bruce in the true light of being a playboy billionaire who transforms himself into Gotham’s most trusted vigilante as the sun sets and the bat signal goes up in the sky. It is one of the few movies of Nolan which have received the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor, i.e., Heath Ledger for the anarchist portrayal of Joker. This movie is shot in multiple real-time sequences and uses very little CGI, as many custom Nolan films usually go. The film stars Christian Bale, Michael Caine, Morgan Freeman, Heath Ledger, Aaron Eckhart, Maggie Gyllenhaal, and Gary Oldman in the main roles.


A movie that takes the world of action to the next level. This movie is known for its undying visuals and the sounds effects that it has to offer. Working again with the multi-talented music composer Hans Zimmer, this movie brings the story of the Dunkirk invasion of WWII to the screen.

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The best thing about this movie is the number of sequences that have been shot in real-time. It is considered one of the war films because of the aerial visuals, ground-level shots, and dynamics displayed in the movie. None of the scenes have gone for CGI. Some of the scenes, such as the plane dives, the sinking of the ships, the ground attacked by ballistic missiles fired by jets, and much more, have all been filmed after months and months of training and practice. The film stars Tom Hardy, Cillian Murphy, Harry Styles, Fionn Whitehead, Mark Rylance, and Kenneth Branagh in the main roles.


A dream within a dream within a dream within a dream, and on and on it goes. Probably considered Nolan’s most complex film, this film has gained some of the biggest critical appraisals for the kind of creativity Nolan displays. This story is based on Cobb, a thief who is considered intellectually entering people’s dreams and infiltrating their thoughts to persuade them to give up.

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With these powers, he gets a special assignment from one of his clients where he has to infiltrate the dream of a wealthy businessman to bring down his business. In exchange, Cobb gets to go back to his daughter and live with her forever. This movie is one out watch as the action and the story has been very carefully planned out! The film stars Leonardo DiCaprio, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Elliott Page, Tom Hardy, and Cillian Murphy in the main roles.


One of the absolute best of what Christopher Nolan has created so far. Interstellar is a movie that deals with a NASA exploration project in which astronauts are tasked to look for a new planet for life as Earth becomes uninhabitable over time and ceases to exist.

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However, On a mission, these few astronauts dedicate their entire leaves to the findings of this mission and pass through years and years of Earth time to only realize that they have missed out on most of everything in their life. The movie stars Matthew McConaughey, Anne Hathaway, Jessica Chastain, Michael Caine, Casey Affleck, Matt Damon, and Wes Bentley in the main cast.


This is considered one of Nolan’s lesser-known films as this one hasn’t got the required attention it deserves. This movie is a simple yet elegant crime and murder story; this movie stars Al Pacino and Robin Williams in the main roles, along with Hilary Swank and Martin Donovan in supporting roles.

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In Addition, The story is based on Detective Will Dormer, one of the best in the field, who comes to an Alaskan town to investigate the killing of a teenage girl. In this time, wherever the detective stays in the city, he starts to lose his sleep and can never get himself to have some shuteye. The robber then tries to create a cat and mouse-like situation to make the detective run around for catching until the detective loses all mental stability and dies. This movie is certainly one to look at if you are into absolute suspense.


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The movie that led to Nolan’s stardom is the movie that gave Nolan his directorial career debut. As the movie name goes, this movie is based on a simple crime story. The movie revolves around Leonard Shelby, a man who has recently lost his wife due to a tragic killing. Leonard is suffering from anterograde amnesia, which means he can forget most events in a very short period. Because of this, he uses different notes and tattoos to refresh his memory and look for the killer who took his wife away from him. However, The film stars Guy Pearce, Carrie-Anne Moss, and Joe Pantoliano in the main roles.