Christopher Nolan is no stranger to the intricate dance between big-budget spectacles and thoughtful auteur cinema. A masterful director, Nolan brings to life dazzling action-packed movies that are nothing short of cinematic marvels, thanks to hefty budgets and his undeniable talent. Yet, he also infuses his films with enigmatic storytelling and playful time twists, which might not always hit the sweet spot for the casual moviegoer. Fully aware of the diverse spectrum of film appreciation, Nolan champions both cinema’s timeless masterpieces and the modern titans of the summer box office. Among the latter, the ‘Fast & Furious’ franchise holds a special place in his heart.
During an interview about his movie ‘Oppenheimer’—which has been stirring early Oscar buzz for 2024—Nolan shared his fondness for the high-octane ‘Fast & Furious’ series. When asked about his so-called “guilty pleasures,” Nolan dismissed the notion that enjoying the Vin Diesel-led franchise should be accompanied by any guilt. “I don’t feel guilty for being a ‘Fast & Furious’ fan. It’s a tremendous action franchise,” Nolan admitted. He shared his enjoyment with a childlike enthusiasm, praising the films for their standalone excitement and admitting that while later installments delve into their unique mythology, they can still be enjoyed out of sequence. His personal starting recommendation is ‘Tokyo Drift’—or as it’s known in Spain, ‘A Full Gas: Tokyo Race.’
Nolan’s admiration for ‘Fast & Furious’ isn’t a recent revelation. He has previously spoken with passion about his favorite installments and his reasons for embracing the franchise. A fan of the original film by Rob Cohen, Nolan reserves a special place in his heart for ‘Tokyo Drift.’ He appreciates the directorial work of Justin Lin, recognizing how the franchise evolved into something grander and more fantastical under Lin’s vision—a transformation he finds both distinctive and entertaining.
He finds humor in the fact that, despite the franchise growing more bombastic with each film, it embodies what sequels ought to be—bigger and more thrilling. Nolan confronts the common complaint about sequels becoming too excessive by flipping the narrative. He emphasizes that this escalation is exactly what audiences crave; they don’t yearn for downsized follow-ups but rather expect each sequel to outdo the last in spectacle and adventure.
It’s clear that Christopher Nolan sees the value in all forms of cinematic expression, from the intellectually complex to the sheer adrenaline-fueled joyrides. His perspective encourages us to appreciate film as a multifaceted art form, capable of offering both profound depth and pure, unbridled entertainment. He stands as a reminder that, regardless of budget or narrative structure, the core of cinema is to captivate and inspire—a credo ‘Fast & Furious’ eminently subscribes to and one that Nolan himself embodies through his diverse and exceptional body of work.