Christopher Nolan’s films – How do they compare?

Last night I had insomnia…so I watched the movie Insomnia, thereby completing my goal to watch all of the films directed by Christopher Nolan.¹

So I thought it would be fun to make a list of Nolan’s films in the order of the ones I liked the best.
Now, before somebody pops a vein and asks why I didn’t put The Dark Knight higher on the list, I’ll ask this question first: “Why so serious?” Relax. It’s just a movie.

This is just a list in the order of my most favorite Nolan flicks. I made this list for fun, and I’d be just as interested in seeing your Nolan flick list in the order of your most favorite–so feel free to leave a comment with your list!

  1. Batman Begins – In my opinion the most intellectually stimulating and soul-searching of his works (screenwriter David Goyer and actor Christian Bale also deserve a lot of credit)
  2. Inception – Again, a hero searching his soul, that seems to be a common thread in movies I like
  3. Following – Extremely well done British neo-noir film done on a $6,000 budget, absolutely brilliant
  4. Momento – Very clever narrative structure, which allows the viewer to experience events as someone with anterograde amnesia (which the film’s protagonist has) would
  5. The Prestige – True to form, this Nolan flick keeps you thinking the whole time, and has a great twist at the end
  6. Insomnia – Another soul-searching flick, a little less nonlinear storytelling than most of Nolan’s films, but a solid film nonetheless. Great revelation of the protagonist in the end.
  7. The Dark Knight – The most Hollywood-esque and least Nolan-esque of all his films. If you like a lot of explosions and dark heros, you’re in for a treat, but don’t expect the standard Nolan non-linear storytelling or soul-seaching.
Alright…Christopher Nolan flick lists! Now I’ve shown you mine, so show me yours in the comments below!


1. I’ve watched all his feature films, now I just need to watch his three short films: Tarantella, Larceny, and Doodlebug.



  1. Memento is his best made in my opinion, most enjoyable though would be Inception. Love The Nolan though, I wrote a piece the other day about him on my blog…

    1. I really enjoyed Momento. Its reverse chronology narrative structure was the perfect way to
      convey the perspective of someone with anterograde amnesia. So I think that was its main appeal to me. My favorite films are ones in which I can identify with the protagonist, so Momento didn’t fall into that category, but it was a very intriguing work of art nonetheless. It’s classic Nolan!

  2. fakescorpion · · Reply

    7. Insomnia (8/10)
    6. Following (7/10)
    5. Memento (9/10)
    4. The Dark Knight (10/10) – The film that introduced me to director Christopher Nolan and get me interested in the Batman and other “American mythologies”.
    3. Inception (10/10) – Nolan’s best film in my opinion.
    2. The Prestige (8/10) – I rated this one lower than Inception and The Dark Knight but still ranked it higher on my list because it always got me thinking for days after viewing.
    1. Batman Begins (9/10) – The Dark Knight may be the one that introduced me to the Batman mythology, but it was later after I watched Batman Begins that made me a believer.

    1. Very cool! Looks like we have similar tastes, with Batman Begins and Inception both ranking high. Thanks for the share!

  3. todayiwatchedamovie · · Reply

    I guess you’ll need to update this soon. I wonder where The Dark Knight Rises will fall on your list.

    1. Yeah…I wasn’t too thrilled about the trailer. I may go see it in theaters but will more likely wait till it hits DVD

      1. todayiwatchedamovie · ·

        The latest trailer got me more interested than the earlier ones. Before that, I was planning to go see it out of obligation.

      2. I’m a big Nolan fan, but as it always seem to happen with these uber-hyped trilogies, even the best of directors start to slip. Look at Sam Raimi, who is one of my heroes…but then Spider-man 3 sucked

      3. todayiwatchedamovie · ·

        Spiderman 3 was really bad, wasn’t it? I chose to blame Topher Grace for that rather than the director.

      4. But…it was the director that chose him…lol. Sam Raimi is the man, though. I just watched the Evil Dead trilogy the other week. So awesome

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