Oppenheimer (2023): A Master Piece

The movie has a sweet run-time of 3 hours and every second counts!
Oppenheimer (2023): A Master Piece
Representational Pic

Oppenheimer is a masterpiece. It is another great movie by Christopher Nolan, one of my favorite movie directors. Oppenheimer stars the famous Irish actor Cillian Murphy, Robert Downey Jr, Emily Blunt and Rami Malek. The movie has a sweet run-time of 3 hours and every second counts!

The movie is based on the book American Prometheus by Kai Bird and Martin Sherwin. Prometheus is considered to be the “Thief of Fire.” In Greek mythology, Prometheus bought fire back to mankind. He was punished for eternity. But what does this have to do with Oppenheimer? Julius Robert Oppenheimer was a young prodigy who worked on developing the first nuclear weapon. He was of German-Jewish descent. Studied physics and chemistry under the guidance of the world’s finest academicians like Neils Bohr, Albert Einstein and Max Born. Later, he was recruited by the government to make a weapon that can destroy the enemies, the Nazis. Oppenheimer took up the offer and went on a years-long journey in 1942 to achieve the theoretically impossible nuclear explosion. He bought fire back to mankind. Oppenheimer and his colleagues worked on a weapon of mass destruction. Oppenheimer is Prometheus.

Oppenheimer also faced a lot of personal problems in his life. His wife was a former Communist. And Oppenheimer was accused of leaking nuclear technology to the Soviets. Was Oppenheimer the destroyer of mankind? Was he a communist spy? Or was he a genius who gave immense power to the wrong people? Did he trigger a chain reaction that would end the world? Watch the movie and think for yourself.

Almost 7 months ago, I came to know of the movie. It was directed by Nolan, and being the Nolan fanboy that I am, I had to watch it. I made my Mom promise to take me to the theatre. And finally, it was released on the 21st of July and I was on my toes. The moment I walked into the cinema hall, the pleasure of watching the movie arose. I knew it was different and greater than almost any other movie I have ever seen. This was the first time I went to the movie theatre in Kashmir. I never expected to be watching the long-awaited film in Kashmir.

As soon as the movie starts, you realize the music is absolutely priceless. The feel, the beats, the innovation and the coordination of the music and the visuals walk hand in hand. The music was specially crafted by the young music director Ludwig Goransson. “Can you hear the Music” and “Destroyer of the Worlds” are the greatest pieces of music I’ve ever heard in a movie. Words can’t describe the feeling of the music. It evokes emotions and awakens your soul. And the music hits the hardest in the cinema hall. Even though the music is available online and can be enjoyed at home, it does not resonate with the real immersive feeling in cinema halls. That is the brilliance of a movie director. Nolan grips us for three hours and shows us his world on the big screen. Hence, this movie deserves and needs to be watched on the silver screen. The music complements the visuals and vice versa. Oppenheimer is a feast for all the senses of the human body.

Another reason to watch this movie on the silver screen is the visuals. IMAX hits differently. Even though there is no true IMAX in Kashmir, even in 2D, the movie immerses you in itself. It hooks you and never lets you go. You never want the movie to end because it deserves to be infinite. I have never been so focused on anything in the entirety of my lifetime as I was in the cinema watching this movie. As each minute goes by, Nolan uncovers a new story. That’s what makes this movie great, it’s greater than life. The goal of the movie is to show you something bigger than yourself. It triggers pain, joy, excitement, anxiety and wonder at the same time. There is no way one can’t cry and clap at the end of the movie. The ending of the movie is one of the best endings in the history of cinema.

The movie explores many aspects of human life. If one wants action and block-buster fight scenes, then Oppenheimer may be a disappointment. It goes deeper into mankind’s soul, addressing righteousness, science, the supernatural, the unknown, the known and the greatest of all, conscience. It is not just a historical biopic, it’s life. Life as Nolan sees it. Life as Oppenheimer sees it. A life that is open for discussion and interpretation. But it’s a life that is beautiful. It makes you love it, hate it, enjoy it, create it or destroy it. It is open to everything and leaves the decision in your hands. You shiver to press the button, your mind and your heart oppose each other. Just like the bomb in the movie, life explodes, but not with a bang. It is silent, it seeps into your soul and shakes you from within. Life is just as Nolan wants you to see it.

The actors in the movie were fabulous. I am left speechless. Kudos to the actors! Nolan is doing the magic behind the camera, but the ones we see on the silver screen are the magicians that enthuse us with the vision of the director. The actors act as a bridge between the director and the audience and without them, the movie will lack its meaning. Oppenheimer is a treat for the eyes, ears and skin of the audience. If it does not make you cry or make your skin crawl, it is not Oppenheimer.

“Barbenheimer” is a new trend nowadays. People are discussing whether Barbie or Oppenheimer is a worthwhile movie to watch. Well, Barbie is happy, joyous and lighter in emotions. Oppenheimer is deep, deeper than stabs of knives. It burns when you touch it. It is a matter of choice whether one wants to watch Barbie or not, but I would say I definitely did the right thing by not watching Barbie. Nolan’s call to the movies is just louder.

I was surprised to see “Nolan in Kashmir.” Not like he was actually in Kashmir, but more like his influence could be felt. I went to the last show of the day and was expecting a dozen people in the hall. But lord, it was house full. Completely packed. It was great to see people coming to appreciate true cinema and applaud the art of filmmaking. This movie has revived my hope in the forgotten and underrated art of cinema. It has saved cinema. Nolan has done it.

Overall, the movie is great. I am running out of words to express my contentment with the movie. I waited for seven long months and I must say, it was worth it. The concern was worth it. I would wait seven more months but would watch it and still be happy. The expectations I had when I walked into the cinema were exceeded by a lot. Nolan did not disappoint a 15-year-old random boy in the middle of nowhere. In fact, Nolan has not disappointed any cinema-goer who goes to the cinema in hopes of watching greatness. I would recommend you watch it on the silver screen, it deserves your attention and applause. Of course, 11 out of 10!

(Student of DPS Srinagar, Abdullah is an author of “No Place For Good” and a Fellow Young Leaders for Active Citizenship (YLAC). Besides being shortlisted for UNESCO International Youth Eyes on the Silk Roads Photo Contest, he also got an opportunity to recite his poem at Pulitzer’s Fighting Words open mic twice).

Related Stories

No stories found.
Greater Kashmir