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Oppenheimer hailed as ‘spectacular’ and ‘epic’ in rave first reviews

The anticipated Christopher Nolan movie lands next week (July 21)

By Nick Reilly

The Christopher Nolan film stars Florence Pugh, Emily Blunt, Robert Downey Jr., Matt Damon, and more

The first reactions to Oppenheimer have praised the forthcoming film as “spectacular” and one of Christopher Nolan’s best films to date.

The film, which charts J.Robert Oppenheimer ‘s path to creating the first atomic bomb, premiered last night in Paris to rave early reactions.

As well as Cillian Murphy, who plays the titular theoretical physicist, the film also stars Emily Blunt as Oppenheimer’s wife, biologist Kitty Oppenheimer ; Matt Damon as Manhattan Project director Lt Leslie Groves Jr, Robert Downey Jr as Atomic Energy Commission boss Lewis Strauss and Florence Pugh as Oppenheimer’s ex-fiancee, Jean Tatlock.

Praising the film, Telegraph critic Robbie Collin wrote on Twitter: “Am torn between being all coy and mysterious about Oppenheimer and just coming out and saying it’s a total knockout that split my brain open like a twitchy plutonium nucleus and left me sobbing through the end credits like I can’t even remember what else.”

He added: “And for all those who’ve groused about the lack of sex in Christopher Nolan’s earlier work…boy oh BOY, are you getting some sex as only Nolan could stage it in this one.”

Similarly full of praise was The Sunday Times’ Jonathan Dean, who wrote: “Totally absorbed in OPPENHEIMER, a dense, talkie, tense film partly about the bomb, mostly about how doomed we are. Happy summer! Murphy is good, but the support essential: Damon, Downey Jr & Ehrenreich even bring gags. An audacious, inventive, complex film to rattle its audience.”

He added: “The downside? The women are badly served – Emily Blunt only once gets out of her stressed mother role. But it’s straight into my Nolan top three, alongside Memento & The Prestige.”

Associated Press writer Lindsey Bahr also described the film as “a spectacular achievement in its truthful, concise adaptation, inventive storytelling and nuanced performances from Cillian Murphy, Emily Blunt, Robert Downey Jr, Matt Damon and the many, many others involved”.

The film is set for release on July 21.