What Christopher Nolan And Stanley Kubrick Have In Common, According To Matthew Modine
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It’s hard to compare Christopher Nolan to any other filmmaker. He has such control over his storytelling methods, and tells such a signature type of narrative, that he’s isolated in the industry. But his work on movies like Interstellar, Insomnia, The Prestige and Inception have earned Nolan comparisons to the late Stanley Kubrick. Can you see it?
Recently, Matthew Modine guested on our ReelBlend podcast, and we started down a conversation comparing Christopher Nolan to Stanley Kubrick. Modine was one of the precious few actors able to work with both men (on Full Metal Jacket, and then on The Dark Knight Rises), and when asked if the directors had any traits in common, Modine said:
Without question, Christopher Nolan succeeded in finding his own way. Despite doing three Batman films, Nolan has carved out a niche in the industry as telling personal, individual stories on a massive scale. He writes (or co-writes) his own screenplays, and develops a project from idea phase to theatrical opening. And it’s this approach to his material that lines Nolan up to Stanley Kubrick, at least in the eyes of Matthew Modine.
The Full Metal Jacket star continued:
The comparison comes about because these two filmmakers have carved out their paths in an industry that constantly forces strong voices into dull templates. Barry Jenkins doing a Lion King continuation, or Olivia Wilde taking on a Spider-Woman film. Might they work? Of course. But we follow those filmmakers because of their approach to material, and support the cottage industries that THEY have become.
Matthew Modine was speaking with us on behalf of the 4K release of Stanley Kubrick’s anti-war drama Full Metal Jacket, which is available for purchase right now.
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Sean O’Connell is a journalist and CinemaBlend’s Managing Editor. He's frequently found on Twitter at @Sean_OConnell. ReelBlend cohost. A movie junkie who's Infatuated with comic-book films. Helped get the Snyder Cut released, then wrote a book about it.
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