Tenet's Christopher Nolan defends 'inaudible' dialogue in his movies

Tasha Hegarty
·2-min read
Photo credit: Frazer Harrison - Getty Images
Photo credit: Frazer Harrison - Getty Images

From Digital Spy

Christopher Nolan has defended the sound mixing in his movies after a number of complaints.

The director has faced criticism for what some viewers have deemed 'inaudible' sound in the likes of The Dark Knight Rises, Dunkirk and his latest blockbuster Tenet.

In new book The Nolan Variations: The Movies, Mysteries, and Marvels of Christopher Nolan by Tom Shone, the director revealed that he got "a lot of complaints" from other filmmakers about the sound mixing in Interstellar.

Photo credit: Warner Bros.
Photo credit: Warner Bros.

He said that the complaints included hard-to-understand dialogue and the music being too loud, but Nolan explained that it was completely intentional and exactly how he wanted the film to sound.

"It was a very, very radical mix," he said of Interstellar. "I was a little shocked to realise how conservative people are when it comes to sound.

"Because you can make a film that looks like anything, you can shoot on your iPhone, no-one's going to complain.

"But if you mix the sound a certain way, or if you use certain sub-frequencies, people get up in arms."

Photo credit: Frazer Harrison - Getty Images
Photo credit: Frazer Harrison - Getty Images

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He added that composer Hans Zimmer mixed the sound a certain way in Interstellar to include "low-end frequencies", which usually get automatically filtered out in the editing process.

"It's a pretty fascinating sound mix. If you see it particularly in an IMAX theatre, projected, it's pretty remarkable."

The Nolan Variations: The Movies, Mysteries, and Marvels of Christopher Nolan is available now.

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