Following(1998) – The beginning of brilliance


Following was Christopher Nolan’s first movie. Wikipedia tells me that Nolan made the movie at an extraordinarily low budget. The movie is entirely in black and white and was shot without expensive artificial lighting. Nevertheless, Following has a brilliant plot and is made with Nolan’s distinct style.

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Directed by Christopher Nolan
Starring Jeremy Theobald, Alex Haw, Lucy Russell, John Nolan

PLOT: Following is the story of a young man with a wierd habit. He is a wanna-be writer who follows random people on the streets. Just follows them as long as he can. But he has his own set of rules – like where he must not venture, how close can he get to someone he follows, and if or not he can follow certain people. He draws certain lines for himself and never crosses them! That’s until he meets another man.

Cobb is like our young man himself, he claims. Cobb also follows random people from the streets. But Cobb goes beyond. Cobb has no rules and even breaks into people’s homes. Cobb teaches our guy his own ways of following. What happens when the young man crosses his own boundaries, following Cobb is for you to find out when you watch the movie.

Now Nolan does not tell you the story as I have been, so far! The mastermind twists and turns his plots in an entirely chaotic, non-linear fashion. Watching this movie is almost like solving a jigsaw puzzle in the dark! Even though you are completely clueless for most part of the movie, you find yourself concentrating very hard trying to get all possible clues from the scenes that Nolan displays for you.

There are only 3 main characters in the movie – the young man, Cobb, and a woman who house is broken into. The rest are just random people on the street. The young man’s make up is pretty much the only marker that Nolan uses to point to the movie’s time-line. And that evolution when you rearrange the scenes in your head, is brilliant.

I absolutely enjoyed watching this movie. And strongly urge you to. Wiki puts the budget of this movie to be a mere $6000! This movie is a lesson to all movie makers(especially Indian) that it is not the $$$ or the star cast that matters, but the story and story telling!

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With Following, I want to Follow Christopher Nolan’s works. Here are some of his previous movie that the popcorn cousins have reviewed: Inception.

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