List of Best Christopher Nolan Movies of All Time

Christopher Nolan is easily one of the most notable directors of the 21st century. With 11 risk-taking, thrill-seeking films under his belt, as we gear up to watch Oppenheimer this July, it's only fitting that we deep dive into the best Christopher Nolan movies of all time.

Prestige (2006)

Set in the 19th century, horror hits two magicians when an illusion goes extremely wrong. In retaliation, Alfred Borden (Christian Bale) and Rupert Angier (Hugh Jackman) battle for supremacy in this dazzling period cinematic experience. When feuds escalate, how do you decide upon the ultimate winner? One man will be sure to fall to the consequences of his ego. It's challenging, unique and engaging; audiences are generally hanging onto their seats in anticipation of discovering each man's fate.

Memento (2000)

A fractured narrative brilliantly portrays the protagonist's experiences in this mysterious thriller directed by Christopher Nolan. The film skillfully follows Leonard (Guy Pearce) as he embarks on a task to track down the man who gruesomely killed his wife. However, tainting his journey, Leonard suffers from extreme memory loss. Emotional and unnerving, this film completely strips stability from underneath you – it is by far one of the greatest Christopher Nolan movies of all time.

Dunkirk (2017)

Written and directed by the iconic Christopher Nolan, Dunkirk is an emotional retelling of a fact-based story. Set in May 1940, the film sees Germany advance into France, trapping troops on the beaches of Dunkirk. After a long and painful endeavor, British and French forces set out on a mission to rescue every single survivor. And to great success - by the end of the mission, over 300,000 soldiers were brought safely home. Starring Fionn Whitehead, Tom Glynn-Carney and Harry Styles, this historical drama is intense and spectacular.

The Dark Knight (2008)

What started as an entertaining comic book has become a rich and brooding crime saga. Bringing the DC universe of Batman to life, released in 2008, this film is dark and thrilling. Batman, played by Christian Bale, meets the Joker (Heath Ledger), and Gotham descends into chaos. This menacing tale remains a fan favourite, grossing over $1 billion at the box office.

Insomnia (2002)

Al Pacino and Robin Williams go head-to-head in this psychological thriller and fast-paced game of cat and mouse. A veteran police detective (Pacino) is sent to a small Alaskan town to crack the code of a recent murder. All seems well until his prime suspect (Williams) forces him into a tricky and tempting series of mind games. The question of how far things will escalate hangs in the mix as the detective soon begins questioning his stability. Released in 2002, this film by Christopher Nolan deserves a prime place on this list.

Batman Begins (2005)

Batman is born in this dark and moody introduction to Christopher Nolan’s superhero franchise. The film follows a young Bruce Wane (Christian Bale) who travels to the Far East to be trained in martial arts by Henri Ducard (Liam Neeson), a mysterious member of the League of Shadows. Learning a vital secret that will change the course of his actions, Bruce Wayne returns to Gotham to clean up the city. Brooding and exciting, this film reintroduced one of DC's most famous heroes and grossed a more than reasonable $373.7 million.

Inception (2010)

Intelligent and innovative, Inception follows Dom Cobb, played by Leonardo DiCaprio. A thief who has the rare ability to enter people’s dreams and steal their darkest secrets, Cobb battles career success and family life. Released in 2010, a chance at redemption is very tempting. If it goes well, it's a perfect crime, but Dom Cobb's livelihood may be compromised if he fails.

Interstellar (2014)

Earth will soon be uninhabitable, and NASA scientists scramble for solutions to keep the human race alive. Offering an answer to the planet's biggest problem, Professor Brand (Michael Caine) works to transport Earth's population to a new home via a wormhole. But first, NASA's astronauts must go to test-drive the experiment and explore the new planet. Starring Matthew McConaughey and Anne Hathaway, this 2014 sci-fi thriller is thought-provoking, intellectual, and one of the best Christopher Nolan movies ever.

The Dark Knight Rises (2012)

The final instalment of Christopher Nolan's Batman franchise, The Dark Knight Rises, is a potent action film starring Christian Bale. Set eight years after its prequel in this Christopher Nolan trilogy, Batman is forced out of exile into a battle against a cunning cat burglar (Anne Hathaway) and a cruel terrorist named Bane (Tom Hardy). Grossing over $1 billion worldwide, the film took the title of the highest-earning Batman film to date.

Tenet (2020)

An oblique yet sprawling and opulent action thriller, the film has been widely criticized for being meaningless and hard to follow. But that aside, the 2020 release serves Nolan-esque spectacles that fans of the director's notable cinematic style will love. In the sci-fi film, a secret agent endeavors to prevent the start of World War III through a series of time-bending missions. An action-packed spectacle starring Robert Pattinson and Kenneth Branagh, this film has been recognized by critics as a delivery system of thrills.

Following (1998)

A Film Noir suspense thriller starring Alex Haw and Lucy Russell, this 69-minute feature film is Christopher Nolan's first big directing credit. Filmed in 15-minute stints over a year to help Nolan manage the budget for the film, this film is the first example of his iconic directing style and cinematic values. As for the film itself, it's hard to compare against his later projects due to the low quality and funding – and that's the only reason it's last on the list - but the story is excellent and worth a watch.

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