ACCLAIMED director Christopher Nolan’s time-twisting Tenet has been the focus of much news and speculation in the past year. Eager film fans have been picking apart trailers and marketing packages for clues to Nolan’s cryptic next release – and have been dismayed by repeated delays from the studio. It’s finally looking like Tenet is on track for a UK release – so here’s what to expect.

Why all the rumours and attention?

Aside from the usual speculation from Nolan fans, the news around Tenet (not, as I keep mispronouncing it, Tennent's) has been due to its shaky and at-times uncertain release date. The film has been more-or-less finished for almost a year, but like many films such as the latest Bond, it has been pushed back due to the coronavirus pandemic. Originally scheduled for July 17, the film has been delayed three times and even briefly taken off the roster entirely, triggering worried chatter from film fans.

But now it’s finally coming out?

The film’s producers’ Warner Bros. have announced Tenet will be releasing in 70 countries, a list that notably includes South Korea, Germany and the UK, but not the United States. The odds are in favour of the film debuting in Scotland’s cinemas on August 26 as the producers have likely already lost significant sums due to repeated postponements.

What’s it all about?

Under Nolan’s all-seeing-eye, the cast and crew have taken a vow of silence on the inner workings of the film. Piecing together clues from trailers and marketing packages, the basic outline of the film appears to centre around the protagonist, played by John David Washington (BlacKkKlansman), who works for a shady organisation called Tenet. Washington is tasked with preventing global catastrophe by securing a device that seems able to reverse the flow of time: for example, the trailer features a car crash occurring in reverse, and a building littered in bullet holes from a shoot-out that hasn’t yet occurred. For those familiar with Nolan’s work, time-meddling will come as no surprise.

Time-meddling? Can you be more specific?

Nolan is famous for fiddling with the flow of time in unconventional ways in many of his movies. Interstellar uses Einstein’s theory of Relativity to show Matthew McConaughey’s character, aboard a super-fast spaceship, experience a slower rate of time than his family back home on Earth, as McConaughey is tragically forced to watch decades pass for his family within the space of a few hours.

Inception is infamously indecipherable due to its complicated concept of ‘dreams within dreams’, where the flow of time slows throughout each new ‘layer’ of dreams. His early work, Memento, throws the concept of watchability almost out the window with the scenes arranged ‘back-to-front’ and the plot occurring in reverse.

So it’s going to be totally incomprehensible then?

Probably not. Most of Nolan’s blockbusters are very accessible such as his last big release, Dunkirk, or his acclaimed Dark Knight Batman trilogy. Though his films sometimes contain confusing concepts, they are still an enjoyable experience, especially in the distraction-free cinema environment.

Is it worth going to see then?

If you enjoy Nolan’s previous work or the action or thriller genres, it’s the film for you. And of course, the film features the biggest and best of Hollywood’s blockbuster glitz, glamour, soundtrack and special effects. Remember to come prepared with sweets and drinks for a two-and-a-half-hour runtime.