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21 Jul 2023 | U/A | 180 Mins



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Oppenheimer movie review: Cillian Murphy's brilliant acting shines through Christopher Nolan's explosive epic

Oppenheimer starring Cillian Murphy, Robert Downey Jr, Emily Blunt, Florence Pugh and more proves to be Christopher Nolan's best work so far. Read Pinkvilla review!

Updated on Jul 20, 2023   |  07:08 AM IST  |  787.8K
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Cillian Murphy as J. Robert Oppenheimer in Christopher Nolan directorial. (IMDb)

Name: Oppenheimer

Director: Christopher Nolan

Cast: Florence Pugh,matt damon,Cillian Murphy,Emily Blunt,rami malek,Robert Downey Jr.

Writer: Christopher Nolan

Rating: 4.5


Oppenheimer is a biographical feature film based on the 'Father of Atomic Bomb' aka J. Robert Oppenheimer. The movie walks you through the life of a theoretical physicist who played a significant role in developing nuclear weapons. He was also part of The Manhattan Project. It also portrays the aftermath of the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombings 1945 and how they changed the course of history for the world. Along with this, the documentary shows how America treated Robert after he shared his strong opinions on security matters. The film features Cillian Murphy, Robert Downey Jr., Emily Blunt, Florence Pugh, Matt Damon, Rami Malek, and more. 

What Works?

Coming from the director of Dunkirk, The Dark Knight, and Inception, one cannot expect less of a masterpiece. Oppenheimer brings the story of a man who managed to change the world with his innovation. The Nolan storyline is faultless and keeps you on the edge of your seat the whole time. While the movie starts slow, it picks up pace in the second half. The three hours cover quantum mechanics, the Communist Party, and Robert's personal life. The powerful yet raw take on what happened back then makes you believe that you are actually living in that era. The movie does justice to its name and it is safe to say that Oppenheimer is Christopher Nolan's best work to date. 

Additionally, the scenes are visually pleasing. With the ongoing talk about no usage of CGI, the impact of the atomic bomb on screen is breathtaking. The movie jumps to the court case often to show how Americans are trying to prove if the person who created the bomb is a Communist or not. The scenes range from black and white to colour which beautifully portray the time jump. You will witness how Nolan's vision meets the actor's brilliant performance on screen. Each character is thoroughly studied and placed in this movie. 

It has a lot of references from history as well as science, so make sure to revise and then watch the movie. 

What Doesn't Work?

The only complaint I have from Oppenheimer is the pace. While the movie manages to capture your attention from the first scene itself, it also fails to keep the same pace in the first half. It took a lot of time to build up and there was plenty of back and forth.

Star Performances

Cillian Murphy as J. Robert Oppenheimer takes the award home for the best actor. He brings depth to his character with his charisma and gives a brilliant performance. You cannot take your eyes off him. After playing supporting roles for Christopher Nolan, it is clear that Cillian got the stage to showcase how extraordinary he is. Every close-up scene which includes him is equally captivating as the atomic bomb. The character was not easy to play but Cillian managed to ace every emotion. 

Robert Downey Jr. plays the role of Oppenheimer's rival, Lewis Strauss. The power he holds on screen is unmatched. While we have seen him as our beloved Iron Man, it was surprising to watch him play such a significant character. He gives his 100% to this character and it shows. The best part is how he is the total opposite of Cillian. His character creates the balance perfectly and we get to witness a sensational performance. 

Emily Blunt, on the other side, delivers an outstanding performance as Kitty Oppenheimer. She carries herself with grace and brings the right attitude to the table. Her character is far from what a 'wife' would have been defined back in the day. She is outspoken and openly shows how she dislikes motherhood. On top of that, she is a biologist who talks about her political views without hesitation. 

Florence Pugh (Jean Tatlock) and Matt Damon (Leslie Grooves) as supporting actors are impressive and will leave a mark. They tend to compliment others in a beautiful manner. Other supporting actors like Rami Malek, Tom Conti, Josh Hartnett, and more are remarkable. 

Oppenheimer movie review: Final verdict

A movie that you should not miss watching in IMAX. The visuals are magnificent, the dialogue delivery is a class apart, the actors are stunning, and it is a Christopher Nolan movie. I don't think I need to add anything more. Oppenheimer is a must-watch and it is indeed a great movie of its genre after a long time. Watch the explosive movie in the theatre near you!


Entertainment journalist who is also a cinephile. With over 4 years of experience in the industry, Ruchi brings her journalism ethics to the tabl... Read more

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