Himesh Patel left ‘awestruck’ by Tenet’s visuals, raves about Nolan
English actor defends and raves about film-maker Christopher Nolan
Writer-director Christopher Nolan's mind-bending sci-fi action thriller Tenet may have bewildered the majority of those who watched it in cinemas with its perplexing plot.
But cast member Himesh Patel claims he was not one of them.
In the film, which has grossed over US$280 million (S$383 million) worldwide and is currently showing here, he plays Mahir, an inventive fixer who assists John David Washington and Robert Pattinson's characters in the airport heist sequence.
Speaking to The New Paper from London last week, the 29-year-old English actor of Indian descent - who made his film debut as the lead in Danny Boyle's Beatles musical romcom Yesterday (2019) - said he naturally had a deeper understanding of Tenet as he had the advantage of reading the entire script beforehand.
He recalled: "When I got the script, I knew I was going to read something precious. I was wondering how the complexity could be translated to the screen. But to be able to turn the first page was a thrill. The writing was done profoundly well.
"Nolan is such an original film-maker, and I'm always so impressed with his stories."
Patel admitted that he did have to flip the pages back every now and then because there was "too much to keep up (with) at times".
He eventually caught Tenet at a preview screening in London with the press and has watched it "a couple of times" since.
He said: "When the screening ended, I discussed it with some of the people there and talked to some friends about it. You would want to watch it a few more times to figure stuff out."
What Patel, whose character crashes a cargo plane into a hangar, was truly "awestruck" by was that particular set piece and Tenet's overall visual effects prowess.
A real Boeing 747 was purchased by the production team to be blown up and piloted into a real building - without relying on scale models, green screens or camera trickery.
Patel said: "Tenet is a truly unique cinematic spectacle unlike any other. Very little computer-generated imagery is used, which is not done very often anymore."
However, some critics have accused Nolan of going too far this time with Tenet's over-complicated and convoluted story structure.
To this, Patel defended: "He has always been pushing his films to the next level.
"That's what I love about him as an artist. It has been pretty special to be part of such a high-concept idea."