SR Pick: The Christopher Nolan Flowchart

Published 5 years ago by , Updated February 10th, 2012 at 10:52 am,

christopher nolan filming SR Pick: The Christopher Nolan Flowchart

While Christopher Nolan has set a new gold standard for filmmaking over the last decade, his films share a lot of elements. An infographic has finally nailed down the 40-year-old director’s career into a nifty flowchart. If you are ever confused as to which Nolan film you are actually watching, the answers lie within this graphic.

One aspect Nolan’s films share is the “well-dressed morally-ambiguous protagonist,” as Entertainment Weekly‘s unique infographic explains. The key to recognizing one of his movies begins with the main character. From the beginning of his feature film career, Nolan has established a main character whose goals are specific, but intentions are questionable.

As the flowchart progresses, it grows more specific. Instead of forcing humor, there are laughs within the truth to the it. For instance, one of the questions is, “Who is an English woman played by?”

Without dwelling on the beauty of the infographic, just take a look at it and notice the connection between all of his films. I’d love to see somebody come up with a “Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon”-style flowchart for the actors in Nolan’s films. Soon enough, we may find that everybody in his Batman trilogy was in Inception.

Christopher Nolan infographic SR Pick: The Christopher Nolan Flowchart

Insomnia sits alone in the corner of this infographic, but still shares the dead family member story arc with most of the other films. Memento, The Prestige and Following all feature a woman with a dark side. If you haven’t seen the latter film, it is living proof of a future film guru.

Nobody is calling Christopher Nolan’s films unoriginal. Each one has a unique aesthetic that sets it apart from his other work. Yet, he has stayed true to a core concept that works. His films continue to get better, while only making slight tweaks to his specific style of storytelling.

You can guarantee at least one more Nolan film will fit this flowchart. The director will continue his Batman franchise, featuring the morally-ambiguous protagonist who dresses up like a bat.

Source: Entertainment Weekly

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  1. This is awesome. My favorite piece might be ‘I prefer plot twists: once in the middle then at the end or every five minutes.’ This is funny in how on the mark it is.

  2. That chart is hilarious. Two parts especially.

    Plot twists every five minutes and this is not a Nolan film.

    As soon as I stopped laughing at the well dressed one I read the plot twist one and started laughing .

    • Plot twists every 5 minutes only refers to Memento. ;)

  3. This is freaking AWESOME! I’m still laughing. Favorite part: Does it feature a well-dress morally-ambiguous protagonist?—>No—>Christopher Nolan did not direct this movie. Hahahaha!

  4. LMAO!!!!!! well im a huge fan of hans zimmers scores theyre effing awsome!

  5. I gotta be honest… I saw no consistancies in the graph. There was really no pattern at all. I’m just saying.

    • It spells it out for you after the chart. Did you read?

  6. As awesome as this is, it also proves that Nolan has a formula that works, no matter how he tweaks it. He brings tons of class to his projects, which seems pretty rare these days. Feeling kind of bad for Ken Watanabe, though. lol

  7. I love the fact nolan uses duality, plot twists, unsure motives, and just all around crazy human themes that we have everyday. It is very refreshing. Very educated director. Still this list is awesome!

  8. I would like to add i think alfonso cauron is in the same caliber as nolan and so under appriciated (probably spelt that wrong, but i’m slightly stoopid drunk and don’t care).

  9. haters will always hate. nolan is a genuis, and has a much more creative mind than the person who devised a silly chart.

    and hans zimmer is a genuis too!

    F*** the haters!! :)

    • I don’t think the chart is an attack on Nolan. I’m as big a Nolan fan as there is and I thought it was hysterical. I’m still chuckling. “Christopher Nolan did not direct this movie.” BWA HA HA HA HA HA etc.

  10. Check out this interactive map, which allows you to expand out various films:

  11. I give Nolan full marks for delivering complicated movies that actually make sense, unlike Richard Kelly’s Donnie Darko or Southland Tales. The odd thing is.. I own copies of all of Kelly’s movies and none of Nolan’s.

  12. I see a lot of similarities between Nolan and Scorsese’s recent films like Shutter Island and even to some extent Hugo…someone make a flow chart linking them up…please!

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