List of the Most Fascinating Quotes from Christopher Nolan’s Movies

Last updated on Nov 30th, 2023

List of the Most Fascinating Quotes from Christopher Nolan’s Movies

… If you picture the story as a maze, you don’t want to be hanging above the maze, watching the characters make the wrong choices because it’s frustrating. You actually want to be in the maze with them, making the turns at their side, that keeps it more exciting… I quite like to be in that maze.” – Christopher Nolan

Christopher Nolan is a British-American award-winning filmmaker who participated in creating some of the most successful films in the past 20 years. With a huge commitment and undeniable talent, Nolan quickly became one of the most recognizable directors in Hollywood.

After his feature debut Following (1998), Nolan gained international recognition with his second film, Memento (2000). His further critical and commercial success continues with Insomnia (2002), Batman Begins (2005), The Prestige (2006), The Dark Knight (2008), Inception (2010), and The Dark Knight Rises (2012), Interstellar (2014), Dunkirk(2017), and Tenet (2020).

His latest feature film, Oppenheimer, was released in 2023.

Table of Contents
  1. Following (1998)
  2. Memento (2000)
  3. Insomnia (2002)
  4. Batman Begins (2005)
  5. The Prestige (2006)
  6. The Dark Knight (2008)
  7. Inception (2010)
  8. The Dark Knight Rises (2012)
  9. Interstellar (2014)
  10. Dunkirk (2017)
  11. Tenet (2020)
  12. Oppenheimer (2023)

Following (1998)

Cobb - Following
1

You can tell a lot about people from their stuff.Cobb

2

You take it away… to show them what they had.Cobb

Memento (2000)

Leonard-Shelby
1

We all lie to ourselves to be happy.Leonard Shelby

2

We all need mirrors to remind ourselves who we are.Leonard Shelby

3

Memory can change the shape of a room, it can change the color of a car. And memories can be distorted. They’re just an interpretation, they’re not a record, and they’re irrelevant if you have the facts.Leonard Shelby

4

If we can’t make memories, we can’t heal.Leonard Shelby

Insomnia (2002)

Ellie-Burr
1

A good cop can’t sleep because he’s missing a piece of the puzzle. And a bad cop can’t sleep because his conscience won’t let him.Ellie Burr

Batman Begins (2005)

Thomas-Wayne
1

Why do we fall, Bruce? So we can learn to pick ourselves up.Thomas Wayne

Henri-Ducard-Ras-al-Ghul
1

If you make yourself more than just a man, if you devote yourself to an ideal, and if they can’t stop you, then you become something else entirely.Henri Ducard

2

Criminals thrive on the indulgence of society’s understanding.Henri Ducard

3

The training is nothing! Will is everything!Henri Ducard

4

Create enough hunger and everyone becomes a criminal.Henri Ducard

5

To conquer fear, you must become fear.Henri Ducard

Bruce-Wayne-Batman-Begins
1

People need dramatic examples to shake them out of apathy and I can’t do that as Bruce Wayne. As a man, I’m flesh and blood, I can be ignored, I can be destroyed, but as a symbol… as a symbol I can be incorruptible, I can be everlasting.Bruce Wayne

2

I won’t kill you… but I don’t have to save you.Batman

Rachel-Dawes
1

Justice is about harmony, revenge is about you making yourself feel better.Rachel Dawes

2

It’s not who you are underneath, it’s what you do that defines you.Rachel Dawes

Carmine-Falcone
1

You always fear what you don’t understand.Carmine Falcone

Scarecrow
1

There’s nothing to fear but fear itself!Scarecrow

Alfred-Pennyworth
1

You start pretending to have fun, you might have a little by accident.Alfred Pennyworth

The Prestige (2006)

Robert-Angier
1

Man’s reach exceeds his imagination!Robert Angier

2

The audience knows the truth, the world is simple. It’s miserable, solid all the way through. But if you could fool them, even for a second, then you could make them wonder. And then you got to see something very special.Robert Angier

Alfred-Borden
1

The secret impresses no one. The trick you use it for is everything.Alfred Borden

2

The sacrifice… that’s the price of a good trick.Alfred Borden

Cutter
1

Obsession is a young man’s game.Cutter

2

Now you’re looking for the secret. But you won’t find it, because, of course, you’re not really looking. You don’t really want to work it out. You want to be fooled.Cutter

Nikola-Tesla
1

You’re familiar with the phrase “Man’s reach exceeds his grasp”? It’s a lie. Man’s grasp exceeds his nerve.Nikola Tesla

2

Things don’t always go as planned. That’s the beauty of science.Nikola Tesla

3

Society tolerates only one change at a time.Nikola Tesla

The Dark Knight (2008)

Harvey-Dent
1

You either die a hero or live long enough to become the villain.Harvey Dent

2

The world is cruel, and the only morality in a cruel world is chance.Harvey Dent

Joker
1

Whatever doesn’t kill you, simply makes you… stranger.Joker

2

If you’re good at something, never do it for free.Joker

3

Madness… is like gravity. All it takes is a little push!Joker

4

It’s not about money… its about sending a message.Joker

Bruce-Wayne-the dark knight
1

Sometimes the truth isn’t good enough. Sometimes people deserve more. Sometimes people deserve to have their faith rewarded.Batman

Inception (2010)

Cobb-Inception
1

An idea is like a virus. Resilient. Highly contagious. And even the smallest seed of an idea can grow. It can grow to define or destroy you.Cobb

2

Positive emotion trumps negative emotion every time. Cobb

3

Dreams feel real while we’re in them. It’s only when we wake up that we realize something was actually strange. Cobb

4

The seed that we planted in this man’s mind may change everything. Cobb

5

Downwards is the only way forwards.Cobb

Arthur
1

True inspiration is impossible to fake.Arthur

Eames
1

You mustn’t be afraid to dream a little bigger, darling.Eames

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The Dark Knight Rises (2012)

Miranda-Tate
1

Suffering builds character.Miranda Tate

Bane
1

It doesn’t matter who we are, what matters is our plan.Bane

2

You think darkness is your ally? But you merely adopted the dark. I was born in it. Molded by it.Bane

Alfred-Pennyworth-the-dark-knight-rises
1

Maybe it’s time we all stop trying to outsmart the truth and let it have its day.Alfred Pennyworth

Bruce-Wayne-the-dark-knight-rises
1

A hero can be anyone. Even a man doing something as simple and reassuring as putting a coat around a young boy’s shoulders to let him know that the world hadn’t ended.Batman

Interstellar (2014)

Cooper
1

Murphy’s law doesn’t mean that something bad will happen. What it means is whatever can happen, will happen.Cooper

2

We used to look up in the sky and wonder at our place in the stars. Now we just look down and worry about our place in the dirt.Cooper

3

This world’s a treasure, but it’s been telling us to leave for a while now.Cooper

4

Mankind was born on Earth, it was never meant to die here.Cooper

5

Once you’re a parent, you’re the ghost of your children’s future.Cooper

Dr.Mann
1

Our survival instinct is our single greatest source of inspiration.Dr. Mann

Dr.Amelia-Brand
1

Accident is the first building block of evolution.Dr. Amelia Brand

2

Love is the one thing we’re capable of perceiving that transcends dimensions of time and space.Dr. Amelia Brand

Donald
1

Don’t trust the right thing done for the wrong reason. The why of the thing, that’s the  foundation.Donald

Dr.-John-Brand
1

I’m not afraid of death. I’m an old physicist. I’m afraid of time.Dr. John Brand

2

Do not go gentle into that good night; Old age should burn and rave at close of day. Rage, rage against the dying of the light.Dr. John Brand ('Do not go gentle into that good night' by Dylan Thomas)

Dunkirk (2017)

Men my age dictate this war. Why should we be allowed to send our children to fight it? - Mr. Dawson (Dunkirk Quotes)
1

Men my age dictate this war. Why should we be allowed to send our children to fight it?Mr. Dawson

Seeing home doesn't help us get there. - Commander Bolton (Dunkirk Quotes)
1

Seeing home doesn’t help us get there.Commander Bolton

Wars are not won by evacuations. - Tommy (Dunkirk Quotes)
1

Wars are not won by evacuations.Tommy (reading Churchill's statement in the newspaper)

Tenet (2020)

I'm not the man they send to negotiate. Or the man they send to make deals. But I'm the man people talk to. - The Protagonist (TENET Quotes)
1

I’m not the man they send to negotiate. Or the man they send to make deals. But I’m the man people talk to.The Protagonist

One man's probability of death is another man's possibility for a life. - Andrei Sator (TENET Quotes)
1

One man’s probability of death is another man’s possibility for a life.Andrei Sator

We're the people saving the world from what might have been. The world will never know what could happen. And even if they did, they wouldn't care. Because no one cares about the bomb that didn't go off. Only the one that did. - Neil (TENET Quotes)
1

We’re the people saving the world from what might have been. The world will never know what could happen. And even if they did, they wouldn’t care. Because no one cares about the bomb that didn’t go off. Only the one that did.Neil

Oppenheimer (2023)

The important thing isn't can you read music, it's can you hear it. - Niels Bohr (Oppenheimer Movie 2023 Quotes)
1

The important thing isn’t “Can you read music?” It’s “Can you hear it?”Niels Bohr (to Oppenheimer)

2

You can lift the stone without being ready for the snake that’s revealed.”Niels Bohr (to Oppenheimer)

Amateurs seek the sun and get eaten. Power stays in the shadows. - Lewis Strauss (Oppenheimer Movie 2023 Quotes)
1

Amateurs seek the sun. Get eaten. Power stays in the shadows.Lewis Strauss

And now I am become Death, the destroyer of worlds. - J. Robert Oppenheimer (Oppenheimer Movie 2023 Quotes)
1

And now I am become Death. Destroyer of worlds.J. Robert Oppenheimer

2

They won’t fear it until they understand it, and they won’t understand it until they’ve used it. When the world learns the terrible secret of Los Alamos, our work here will ensure a peace mankind has never seen.J. Robert Oppenheimer

3

We imagine a future and our imaginings horrify us.J. Robert Oppenheimer

A prophet can't be wrong. Not once. - Isidor Rabi (Oppenheimer 2023 Movie Quotes)
1

A prophet can’t be wrong. Not once.Isidor Rabi

What are your favorite quotes?