[SPOILER] Discussion/Speculation Thread

An original action espionage film releasing in IMAX on August 12, 2020
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Janky Sam wrote:
September 14th, 2020, 3:14 am
It seems like a lot of people have a problem with the ending because
it's possible for Tenet to dig up the algorithm even after it's buried and Sator dies, and the only explanation I can think of is the fact that only The Protagonist and Ives seem to know its location (since they purposely don't spread that info among their team, who doesn't even seem to know that one of their objectives is to get the algorithm). So if The Protagonist and Ives die in the explosion, then their knowledge dies with them.
Dialogue from the screenplay:
SATOR (during his bad-guy speech at the end): You fight for a cause you barely understand. With people you trust so little you’ve told them nothing. When I die, the world dies with me. And your knowledge dies with you. Buried in a tomb like an anonymous Egyptian builder, sealed in a pyramid to keep your secret.
And then there's this exchange from earlier when Ives is briefing his team:
IVES: Now our job is to fail to diffuse that bomb, while the splinter unit achieves its task undetected.

RED SOLDIER 3: Which is…?

IVES: Need to know, and you don’t.
I actually got this on second watch :D

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Oku wrote:
September 14th, 2020, 3:43 am
How about having Neil unnamed throughout the film like the Protag (and like with the Protag, don't make it obvious that we don't know his name).

Then at the end/ending shot, show the red string tied to Max's backpack, tying it all together literally and figuratively.
:gonf:
We would have called him : tsinogatorp eht

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MuffinMcFluffin wrote:
September 13th, 2020, 8:19 pm
quervo wrote:
September 13th, 2020, 6:11 pm
About THAT theory.
I just watched it third time, and was trying to imagine that Max is Neil, but I just can't. I think since Vader=Anakin people are trying to find forced connections between characters, but since that I can't recall any good usage of this kind of plot twists. The Prestige did it well, but remember, it wasn't our task to find it out, Nolan showed the truth just as he did in TDKR (Miranda=Talia). Of course, Max can be Neil, because there's nothing denying it, and as Tenet is a fiction without any pre/sequels, you have the right to believe or even to be sure that's the truth, but I'm nearly 100% sure that in Nolan's head they're not the same.
I wasn't speculating though, I was wondering why it wasn't canonized in the first place.

That said, it's not that much of a stretch:

  • MAXIMILIEN -- NEIL.
  • Longer blonde hair.
  • English accent.
  • Graduate degree in Physics.
  • Speaks Estonian, as does Sator.
  • "Would you take a child hostage? A woman?"
  • Knows much about Protag and is one step ahead every step of the way.
  • Cares for Kat after injury, like a good boy.
  • Knowledge of personal date from Kat's past of which Max was around.
  • Performs an indebted sacrifice to Protag with his own life.
  • "See you at the beginning." Next (and final) scene shows Protag watching Kat & Max.
I don't know why these prove that they are related: English accent; Physics degree; "Would you take a child hostage? A woman?"
For the rest... longer blonde hair can be a visual confirmation, but in a realistic world hairstyles do change through the decades. I don't think Sator speaks Estonian, he is Russian. We only hear him speaking English and Russian (and backwards). Estonian isn't a slavic language, like I'm from Hungary, which is in Central-Europe (which is a lot smaller than the former Soviet Union), but I don't speak any other central-european languages. Knows everything about Protagonist, because I think Future Protagonist already told him the background infos. Cares for Kat... yeah, this is the point that proves me the most he is not his son. He cares for her, but not like a child, but like a doctor. There are no chemistry and emotions between them, no emotional reaction for Mom killing Daddy. Knows personal date... Protagonist knew the exact date when Kat and Andrei were at that party in Riyadh (maybe?), that's a part of their job to know these kinds of things. And Maximlien is a French name, its Russian equivalent is Maximilian.

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Oku wrote:
September 14th, 2020, 3:20 am
MuffinMcFluffin wrote:
September 14th, 2020, 1:50 am
KEM wrote:
September 14th, 2020, 1:36 am


I certainly think it does and I’m totally fine with it not being confirmed cause it gives us a lot more to talk about, same as the ending to Inception, both have tons of hints and clues pointing to the answer but not getting it up front is a great choice in my opinion. Every I tell this theory too has their mind blown and ends up loving the film a lot more
The difference is Inception's payoff already feels grander and more tangible for audiences.

And just as you said, people end up loving it more once they learn about it. Think about the 99.91% of audience members who aren't even aware of the thought.
Imagine Dunkirk ending with Tommy saying, "I wonder how my father Farrier is doing" :lol:

I feel it's better as the maybe-sorta-wink-wink, maybe-sorta-nudge-nudge thing that it is now.
How am I just hearing of this Dunkirk theory now?

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Well, if the theory is true, there's a funny outcome of the movie's worst line. :D
- Everyone and everything that has ever lived… Destroyed. Instant. Precise enough?
- Including my son.

And if Neil is indeed Max, then... nearly everyone survives that moment but him.

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I'm sure this has been discussed before, but since my second viewing I have been very confused about one thing.
At the end of the movie, Neil says that they have a future in the past. Does this mean that after the events of the film the Protagonist will get into another turnstile and live in the inverse world for however many years, until he gets into another turnstile and un-inverts. He will then be living blank number of years in the past and will meet Neil. He will then recruit younger Neil, knowing that he will eventually give his life for him [the Protagonist] and the mission.
Am I understanding this correctly? I'm so confused and have been thinking about this since Saturday.

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marshallmurphy wrote:
September 14th, 2020, 9:35 pm
I'm sure this has been discussed before, but since my second viewing I have been very confused about one thing.
At the end of the movie, Neil says that they have a future in the past. Does this mean that after the events of the film the Protagonist will get into another turnstile and live in the inverse world for however many years, until he gets into another turnstile and un-inverts. He will then be living blank number of years in the past and will meet Neil. He will then recruit younger Neil, knowing that he will eventually give his life for him [the Protagonist] and the mission.
Am I understanding this correctly? I'm so confused and have been thinking about this since Saturday.
I'm not sure yet, but I thought Nolan got too cute with a line that I thought I would hear in any one of these types of films, especially since it's not exactly explained and he starts saying other stuff after.

But let's pretend time only goes one direction as far as characters aging, so let's pretend that the Neil that we see, whether he's ever inverted or normal, is always going forward age-wise... in his younger self past, he was in the future with an older JDW, who formed Tenet and recruited Neil, having him invert backwards at least as far back as the Opera House. So what Neil is telling him is: "Back when for me? When you recruited me? That's coming for you later, and it'll be big for us and the world."

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marshallmurphy wrote:
September 14th, 2020, 9:35 pm
I'm sure this has been discussed before, but since my second viewing I have been very confused about one thing.
At the end of the movie, Neil says that they have a future in the past. Does this mean that after the events of the film the Protagonist will get into another turnstile and live in the inverse world for however many years, until he gets into another turnstile and un-inverts. He will then be living blank number of years in the past and will meet Neil. He will then recruit younger Neil, knowing that he will eventually give his life for him [the Protagonist] and the mission.
Am I understanding this correctly? I'm so confused and have been thinking about this since Saturday.
My reading is this:
The Protagonist stays in the present for a while (months? years?) and creates Tenet to get all information and resources he needs to carry out the events of his past self (AKA, the events of the movie that save the world), before inverting back several years and recruits Neil / most other members of Tenet from that time. I don't think Priya ever inverted from the future, for example. I think most of "Tenet" was actually created in the past.

-Vader

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Vader182 wrote:
September 14th, 2020, 9:46 pm
marshallmurphy wrote:
September 14th, 2020, 9:35 pm
I'm sure this has been discussed before, but since my second viewing I have been very confused about one thing.
At the end of the movie, Neil says that they have a future in the past. Does this mean that after the events of the film the Protagonist will get into another turnstile and live in the inverse world for however many years, until he gets into another turnstile and un-inverts. He will then be living blank number of years in the past and will meet Neil. He will then recruit younger Neil, knowing that he will eventually give his life for him [the Protagonist] and the mission.
Am I understanding this correctly? I'm so confused and have been thinking about this since Saturday.
My reading is this:
The Protagonist stays in the present for a while (months? years?) and creates Tenet to get all information and resources he needs to carry out the events of his past self (AKA, the events of the movie that save the world), before inverting back several years and recruits Neil / most other members of Tenet from that time. I don't think Priya ever inverted from the future, for example. I think most of "Tenet" was actually created in the past.

-Vader
Okay, that makes more sense. @MuffinMcFluffin confused me even more there for a minute! Lol. :lol:
It seems weird to me that the Protagonist has to live in inverted time for several years (that would be pretty boring, right, since he probably can't do much or interact with people unless others inverted with him)? Also seems strange that he will recruit Neil knowing that they will become close friends and that Neil will eventually die for him and the mission. Almost feels like he's cheating him or tricking him, though I guess the fate of humanity is more important?
Last edited by marshallmurphy on September 14th, 2020, 10:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Well... remember there's no reason he'd have to do several years in a row. He could do several week (or month) long stretches before going through a turnstyle and getting more supplies, seeing what's what in the world, and inverting again until the point he recruits everyone like Priya, Neil, etc.

-Vader

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