Tenet (2020) – Transcript

Armed with only one word, Tenet, and fighting for the survival of the entire world, a Protagonist journeys through a twilight world of international espionage on a mission that will unfold in something beyond real time.
Tenet (2020)


An unnamed CIA agent — referred to as “The Protagonist” — participates in an undercover SWAT operation at a Kiev opera house, rescuing an exposed spy and capturing a strange artifact. He is saved from being shot by a masked soldier with a distinctive red tag on his rucksack. The Protagonist is captured by a Russian agent and tortured before consuming a cyanide pill. He later awakens and learns the mission was a test and that the pill was fake. He is also informed that the same organization that captured him stole the artifact and killed all his colleagues from the mission. In order to combat the people who killed his colleagues, the Protagonist’s boss points him to a secret organisation called “Tenet”, leading him to Laura, a scientist studying bullets whose entropy has been “inverted” so they move backward through time.

The Protagonist traces the bullets to Priya Singh, a Mumbai arms dealer. With the help of Neil, a supposed local, the Protagonist infiltrates Priya’s compound and learns she is a member of Tenet. She informs the Protagonist that her bullets were inverted by Russian oligarch Andrei Sator, who is communicating with the future. In London, The Protagonist shares lunch with a contact of Priya’s in British intelligence. He tells the Protagonist that the best way to get close to Sator is through his wife Kat, who is an art appraiser, and that she has sold Sator a fake drawing by a famous artist and that she may have known it was a forgery. The Protagonist meets with Sator’s wife, Kat, and learns that Sator is blackmailing her with a forged drawing she had sold him to keep her from their son, Max. She mentions that the last time she and Sator were truly happy was on their yacht in Vietnam, where she later saw another woman dive from the ship.

The Protagonist and Neil work with a fixer named Mahir to steal the drawing from a storage facility at Oslo Airport by crashing a Boeing 747 into the hangar as a diversion. Inside the facility, they find a machine from which two masked men emerge, one of which is inverted. After unmasking the normal one, whose face is not shown, Neil stops the Protagonist from killing the inverted one. Priya later explains that the machine was a “Turnstile”, a time inversion device developed in the future, and that the two masked men were the same person. Thinking the drawing was destroyed, Kat arranges a meeting between Sator and the Protagonist. After Sator reveals that he had the drawing moved before the crash, Kat attempts to drown him during a boating trip, forcing the Protagonist to intervene and save him. Afterwards, the Protagonist offers to steal a case of plutonium Sator desires in exchange for Kat’s freedom, to which Sator agrees.

The Protagonist and Neil succeed in stealing the “plutonium” from an armoured convoy in Tallinn, but realise it is actually another artifact. An inverted Sator intervenes and a car chase ensues. The inverted Sator takes the artifact, captures the Protagonist and Kat, and takes them to another Turnstile. There, an inverted Sator walks out of the turnstile and demands the Protagonist tell him the location of the artifact. The Protagonist gives him a false location of the artifact before Sator shoots Kat with an inverted bullet. A normal Sator then arrives and demands the location of the artifact as the inverted Sator leaves. Immediately afterwards, a team of Tenet operatives arrive, free the Protagonist, and force the normal Sator to flee into his Turnstile. Shortly thereafter, the Protagonist follows him through to prevent him retrieving the artifact, but accidentally ends up helping him take it while inverted. With Kat mortally wounded, the Protagonist and Neil take her through Sator’s Turnstile and travel back to the Oslo Airport crash a week earlier. As they re-infiltrate the airport, the inverted Protagonist fights his non-inverted self before reaching the Turnstile and reverting to normal.

The Protagonist meets with Priya demanding answers about the full nature of what is happening. She explains that the artifacts are parts of a future-developed “algorithm” capable of inverting the entire world; future humans are using Sator to activate it, in a desperate attempt to counteract the effects of climate change despite knowing it would mean the end of existing human history and possibly destroy the world. The inventor of this technology, fearing its possible consequences, separated them into nine pieces and inverted them so they could remain hidden in the past. The Protagonist realises Priya wittingly knew he would fail to steal the artifact and that it would only end up in Sator’s hands and confronts her. She defends herself by explaining that she knew Sator would one day acquire the artifact and that she believes the future cannot be changed. She also tells him that Sator now has all nine pieces of the algorithm. Disillusioned, the Protagonist decides he will attempt to take the algorithm from Sator.

Kat reveals to the Protagonist and Neil that Sator is dying from inoperable pancreatic cancer; they deduce that he will trigger the algorithm through suicide via a dead man’s switch, believing the world should die with him. Kat believes Sator will choose to die on their day in Vietnam when they were last happy together. The Protagonist, Kat, and Neil decide that they will invert back in time to that day so Kat can delay Sator’s death whilst Tenet secures the assembled algorithm.

Tenet tracks the assembled algorithm to an abandoned Soviet closed city and commences a “temporal pincer movement”, wherein half of their troops move forward in time to the blast zone, while the other half moves backwards. As the operation is about to begin, Kat finds Sator on his yacht, who believes she is younger version of herself, and inadvertently reveals he will commit suicide with a pill. Meanwhile, Tenet infiltrates the city and a fierce battle ensues. The Protagonist and a Tenet operative named Ives are prevented from reaching the algorithm by a locked gate, until an inverted masked corpse with the familiar red tag on its rucksack springs to life, saves the Protagonist from a gunshot, and unlocks the gate. Kat prematurely kills Sator just as the Protagonist and Ives capture the algorithm. Kat dives from the yacht’s deck, where she is witnessed by her past self.

The Protagonist, Neil, and Ives break up the algorithm’s components and part ways. The Protagonist notices a red tag on Neil’s rucksack; Neil reveals that a future version of the Protagonist recruited him to Tenet years earlier, and this mission is the end of a long friendship that the Protagonist has yet to experience. In London, Priya is about to order Kat’s assassination, but is killed by the Protagonist. Afterward, a narration of the Protagonist’s thoughts reveals that he now believes he is the mastermind behind Tenet.



Wake the Americans.



We live in a twilight world. We live in a twilight world.

And there are no friends at dusk.

You’ve been made. This siege is a blind so they can vanish you.

But I established contact.

Bring you in or kill you, you have 2 minutes, make up your mind.

Where’s the package?



Take his!

What are you doing? What are you doing?

Who are you?

No friends at dusk huh?

You go. Get him to the rally point.

Swap clothes! Ukrainians are expecting a passenger. I’ve never seen a encapsulation like this.

We don’t know how old it is but it’s the real deal.

Did you have an out?

A service tunnel to the sewer.

Take this. Take him. Take his exit. I don’t trust ours anymore. Can you defuse that?

It is centrally synchronized. Are there more?

They’re covering their tracks.

Take out the audience?

It’s just the cheap seats.

That’s not our mission.

It’s mine now.

Move away.

You don’t have to kill these people.

That wasn’t one of us.

I’ll take the help.

Go, go, go, go, go!

It’s not him!

A man can be trained to hold out for about 18 hours, so your colleagues will be free by seven. He didn’t last 18 minutes. He didn’t have anything to hide.

You’re smuggling a no body. Thats’s risky. Or were you counting on this? Death. The CIA’s.

Spare yourself. Once they clear.

Almost seven, uh-oh, it’s running fast.

We have to put it back 1 hour.

Get it out!

Welcome to the afterlife. You’ve been in a medically induced coma while we got you out of Ukraine and rebuilt your mouth.

The suicide pills are fake. Why?

A test.

A test? They pulled my teeth out. Did my team get clear?

No. Private Russian, we think.

Somebody talked.

Not you. You chose to die instead of giving up your colleagues.

We all believe we’d run into the burning building. But until we feel that heat, we can never know. You do.

I resign.

You don’t work for us, you’re dead. Your duty transcends national interest. This is about survival.


Everyone’s. There’s a cold war, cold as ice. To even know it’s true nature is to loose. This is knowledge divided. All I have for you is a gestor, in combination with a word. “Tenet”. Use it carefully. It’ll open the right doors, but some of the wrong ones too.

That’s all they told you?

That test you passed? Not everybody does.

With a high-vis vest and a clipboard you can get almost anywhere. Almost.

I’m here for Tenet.

No small talk. Nothing that will reveal who we are or what we do.

I thought I was here to find out what we do?

I don’t care for “what”, you’re here for “how”. “What”, is your department. None of my business.

Well to do what I do, I need some idea of the threat we face.

As I understand it, we are trying to prevent World War III.

Nuclear holocaust?

No. Something worse.

Aim it and pull the trigger.

It’s empty.

Aim it.

Check the magazine.


One of these bullets is like us, traveling forwards through time. The other ones going backwards. Can tell which is which?

How about now? It’s inverted. It’s entropy runs backwards. So to our eyes, its movement is reversed. We think it’s a type of inverse radiation triggered by nuclear fission.

You didn’t make it?

No we don’t know how yet.

So where’d it come from?

Someone manufacturing them in the future. And their streaming back to us. Try it.

You have to have dropped it.

How can it move before I touch it?

From your point of view, you caught it. But from the bullet’s point of view, you dropped it.

But cause comes before effect.

No. That’s just the way we see time.

Well what about free will?

That bullet would have never have moved if you hadn’t put your hand there. Either way we run the tape, you made it happen. Don’t try to understand it. Feel it.

Instinct. Got it.

Why does it feel so strange?

Your not shooting the bullet… Your catching it.

Wow! I’ve seen this type of ammunition before.

In the field?

I was almost hit.

Then you were exceedingly lucky. An inverted bullet passing through your body would be devastating. Not pretty.

These look like today’s.

They’ve only been made today and inverted years from now.

Where do you get them?

They came with the wall. I was assigned it, like all the material I’m studying here.

Do you have an analysis on the metals?

Sure. Why?

The mixture of alloys can tell me where they have might have been made. Look… I’m not seeing Armageddon here.

The bullet may not seem like much but it’s a simple machine. Lead bullet, brass casing, gunpowder. If they can invert that, we see no reason they couldn’t invert pretty much anything. Even an nuclear weapon can only affect our future. An inverted weapon might be able to affect our past as well. Now that we know what to look for, we’re finding more and more inverted material. Remanences of complex objects.

What do you think we’re seeing?

The detritus of a coming war.


We live in a twilight world.

No friends at dusk. Was told you left the building.

Even the dead need allies.


I need an assist in Mumbai, I need to get to Sanjay Singh.

Singh? He never leaves his house, and his house is… his house.

Yes it is. I’m looking right at it.

I’ll see who’s on deck. Bombay Yacht Club in two hours.

I assume you need an introduction to a prominent Mumbai local on short notice. I’m Neil.

I need an audience with Sanjay Singh.

That’s not possible.

Ten minutes, tops.

Time isn’t the problem. Getting out alive is the problem. Would you take a child hostage? A woman?

If I had to. I’m not looking to make much noise here.

Yes? Vodka tonic. And a diet Coke. What? You never drink on the job.

You’re well informed.

Ah, it pays to be in our profession.

Well I prefer soda water.

No you don’t. How’s your parachuting?

I broke an ankle during basic training. Singh’s house isn’t tall enough to parachute off of.

It’s bungee jumpable.

I don’t think “bungee jumpable” is a word

It may not be a word but it may be our only way out of that place. Or in to it for that matter.

I know you’re tired. So am I.


Stay back. I was almost taken out by a very unusual type of ammunition in Ukraine. I want to know who supplied it.

My name is Sanjay. And you are? No chit chat?

There’s no one at the other end, no one who’s going to help you anyway.

Don’t let it get cold.

Why should I know who supplied it?

The combination of metals is unique to India, If it’s from India it’s from you.

Fine assumption.


Deduction then. Look, my friend. Guns are never conducive to a productive negotiation.

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

I can’t…, I can’t tell you.

You’re an arms dealer, friend. This may be the easiest trigger I’ve ever had to pull.

To say anything about a client would violate the terms he lives by.

If tenents are important to you, then you can tell me. Everything.

Not while you have a gun to my husbands head. Sanjay, make a drink for our guest please.

Cheers. Priya.

This is your operation.

A masculine front in a man’s world has its uses. The dealer you are looking for is Andrei Sator.

The Russian oligarch.

Do you know him?

Not personally. Made his billions in gas. Moved to London, said to be on the outs with Moscow.

Very good. Except the gas he made his billions from was actually plutonium.

None of which explains how or why you sold him inverted munitions?

When I sold him the arms they were perfectly ordinary.

So how did he get them inverted?

We believe he’s functioning as some sort of a broker between our time and the future.

He can communicate with the future?

We all do, don’t we. Email, credit cards, texts. Anything that goes into the records speaks directly to the future. The question is, can the future speak back?

And I’m supposed to find out?

To get anywhere near Sator will take a fresh faced fresh protagonist. And you are fresh as a daisy. Get close, find out what his receiving and how.

Is it safe to involve British Intelligence?

I have a contact, whos’s out of Sator’s reach.

You must have had a plan for getting out.

Not one I love.

May I help you sir.

I’m Mr. Crosby’s lunch.

I presume you mean “Sir” Michael Crosby’s lunch.

Presume away.

If you’ll follow me.

I started without you. Hope you don’t mind.

I’ll catch up. Same for me, please.

I’ll send the waiter.

No, just pass on the order.

I gather you have an interest in a certain Russian national.

Anglo-Russian, so I have to watch my step.

Indeed, he’s tapped in to the intelligence services. I’ve warned them his feeding them rubbish, but…, they don’t seem to care

Tell me about him.

I assume you’re familiar with the Soviet era secret cities.

Closed cities, not shown on maps built around sensitive industries. Most of them have been opened up and renamed as regular towns.

Not the one Sator grew up in. Stalsk 12. In the seventies it had a population of about 200,000. Thought to be abandoned.


Had some kind of accident. After which it was used for underground tests. Two weeks ago, the same day as the Kiev opera siege, we spotted a detonation in northern Siberia just where Stalsk 12 was. Sator emerged from this blackspot on the map… with ambition and enough money to buy his way into the British establishment.

Through his wife?

Katherine Barton. Eldest niece of Sir Fredrick Barton. She works at Shipley’s. Met Sator at an auction.

Happily married?

Practically estranged.

Well how do I get to Sator?

Through her of course.

Well, you may have an inflated idea of my powers of seduction.

Hardly. We have an ace in the hole.

You’re carrying a Goya in a Harrods bag?

It’s a fake by a Spaniard named Arepo. One of the two we confiscated from an embezzler in Bern.

What happened to the other one?

It turned up at Shipley’s. Authenticated by Katherine Barton. Put on auction, and who do you think bought it?

Her husband? Does she know it’s a forgery?

Oh, it’s hard to say. Rumor has it, that she and Arepo were close.


Look, No offence… but in this world where someone is claiming to be a billionaire… Brooks Brothers won’t cut it.

I’m assuming I’m on a budget.

Save the world, then we’ll balance the books. Can I recommend a tailor?

I’ll manage. You British do not have a monopoly on snobbery you know.

Well, not a monopoly. More of a controlling interest.

Can you box that up for me?

Certainly not.

Goodbye, Sir Michael.

How can I help sir?

Sorry, I wasn’t notified of any appointments, Mr…?


Mr. Goya?

No, I’m told you’re the person to see about Goya.

That’s extraordinary.

What’s it worth?

Let’s not get ahead of ourselves. Lots of work to do before any kind of valuation. Provenance, microscope examination, X-rays…

But what does your heart tell you?

So where did you say you acquired this drawing?

Tomas Arepo.

I bought my Goya for cents on the dollar from an irate Swiss banker. Traced it back to Arepo and then realized I had scored a bargain, when he told me who paid top dollar for another of his pictures. Your husband.

There’s your bargain! Your drawings and obvious fake.

My drawings a very good fake. You know that better than anyone. The information is the bargain.

The information that I helped defraud my own husband?

He and I are in related businesses, but he’s a very hard man to meet. If you and I were to make an arrangement…

An arrangement? You mean blackmail? You can’t be afraid of the word. My husband isn’t. Sorry, to tell you he got there first.

He knows, and he’s never done anything about it?

Why would he?

He paid 9 million dollars for it.

Barely cover the cost of the holiday the just forced us on.

Where’d you go? Mars?

Vietnam on our yacht. His yacht. You’ve got the suit. the shoes, the watch, But you’re a little out of your depth.

People who’ve amassed fortunes like your husband, generally are not ok with being cheated out of any of it.

The drawing is his hold over me. He threatened me with the police. Prison. The works. He controls me. The contact with my son. Everything. Leaving would never have been easy but now it is impossible. You can’t fight. Just beg. In Vietnam I tried to love him again. I thought if there was love there he might give me my son back. We sat, on that bloody boat watching the sunsets imitated some earlier time in our life. He seemed happy so I asked him, and he made me an offer. He’d let me go, if I agreed never to see my son again. I expressed myself, and took Max ashore. He called us, contrite. And when we got back I glimpsed some other woman diving off the boat, and then vanished. I’ve never felt such envy.

You do not seem like a jealous type.

Of her freedom. You know I dream of just diving off that boat.

But you share a son.

That’s my life now.

Did you know that the drawing was a fake?

No. Tomas and I became close, maybe too close. I failed. Andrei can’t conceive of failure. Only betray. But I didn’t betray my husband. But it feels like maybe I missed my chance.

And he let Arepo walk free.

If you had actually met Arepo, as you claimed, you’d understand that he no longer walks… anywhere.

We spoke on the phone.

He can’t do that either.

Where’s the drawing?


Get me an introduction. I’ll take the drawing out of the equation. No picture, no prosecution, no more hold over you. I might just be your second chance.

I don’t need redemption.

At betrayal.

Friends of your husbands?

You knew this was going to happen?

Do not worry, they won’t kill you. Andrei dislikes tangling with local law enforcement on that level.

You must have really not like the look of me.

The look was fine, it’s best to get to the nasty part before I care one way or the other.

There’s a number in your left coat pocket, do not call from home.

You won’t be taking my call.

I might surprise you.

I ordered my hot sauce an hour ago.

Can we get going?


He wants you to see it.

And he gets what he wants.

Not always apparently.

Anna says we’re going to Pompeii and see lava.

We will, We’ll go together. I’ll be there too.

I told you I’d surprise you. He’s a cute kid.

He’s everything.

Where’s the drawing?

Oslo, at the airport.

The airport?

Do you know what Freeport is?

A storage facility for art that was acquired…

But not yet taxed. We started a network. Rotas, his construction company, built them, I brought in the clients. The facilities are tax havens.

The clients can view their investments without importing them, so they avoid paying tax. So it’s sort of like a transit lounge for art?

Art, antiques, anything of value really.


Anything legal.

But it’s not done like the Swiss banking system. Opaque.

As I’m sure you are aware, most Freeports are just warehouses, but here we ensure that you can enjoy…

Rotas has assets in the Oslo Freeport. I’m guessing it’s there.

And this way to the vaults.



We make trips there four, five times a year.

To view art?

And do whatever it is he does. Turns out arts of no importance to Andrei.

But the Freeports are.

The structure of the vaults is based on the Pentagon. Each vault a separate structure within the other. Damage to one structure won’t compromise the other. Some customers choose biometric access control. You can go straight in… Off the tarmac.

From the terminal?

From their private planes.

Of course.

Our logistics department ships to and from any other Freeport in the world without customs inspection.

What are you hoping to find there?

Do you really want to know?

I’m not sure.

Bring some lead-lined gloves.

Jesus, its Nuclear.

When you’re on the tour, pay attention to the fire precautions.

Documents are vulnerable to…

Fire, absolutely?

I was going to say, water damage from sprinkler systems.

We don’t use sprinklers.

The facility is flooded with Halide gas, displacing all the air within seconds.

Can you show me?

Well if I did, we’d suffocated.

What about the staff?

Halide only fills the vaults, they just have to get into either corridor, and there is a 10 second warning.

At least you give them 10 seconds.

Well sir, our clients use us, because we have no priorities, above their property.


All doors are fireproof. Hydraulic closers, simple key and some electronic triggers. Surprisingly easy once they have been locked down.

Why a locked down?

The power switches to failsafe, securing the outer doors. But the inner doors revert to factory settings.

You can pick the locks, its child’s play really.

Child’s play? Your inside airport security. They have to worry about climate control, not armed raids.

So how do we get enough firepower through the perimeter to trip their lockdown procedure? The back wall of the Freeport.

You’ve got something?

You’re not gonna like it.

You want to crash a plane? Not from the air, not so dramatic. I want to run a jet off the taxi way, and breach through the wall and start a fire.

Well how big a plane?

Well… that part is a “little” dramatic. This is Mahir. His team will work the plane.

There can’t be passengers.

Norsk Freight. They use the hangar west of the Freeport.

You want to crash a transport plane? What about the crew?

We pop the slides, chuck ‘em off.

On the move?

What’s the problem, they’ll be fine.

Well it seems… bold.

“Bold” I’m fine with. I thought you were gonna say “nuts”.

And if you get caught?

We won’t.

And if you do?

Everyone assumes terrorism, but no one’s died, so a swift extradition and lost in the system. It’ll barely make the news.

That all depends on the size of the explosion.

Well actually the gold bars might get some play.

Gold bars?

Norsk Freight ships treasury gold once a month.

Blow the back, drop it out on the runway.

No one will be looking at the building. I guarantee you.

The space in this inner pentagon is too big. There’s something there. I can’t figure it out, it’s just not marked.

It’s 45 seconds.


Won’t you be running?

Okay, it’s your turn. Start packing.

Gentlemen, if would, through the detector please. Sir, and Sir.

Can I offer you perhaps a coffee? A water?

I’ll take an espresso.


No thank you.

Is everybody on this plane vegetarian? Cause all I got here is vegetarian. So that, looks like meat, but, I think that looks vegetarian, I think they both look vegetarian, I do not know. Okay.

This way, gentlemen.

Gentlemen, your central…

Continue. Not the radio.

Come on.


Let’s go! Now!



You said ten seconds, right?

There’s someone in here with us.

Do you need a hand?

Actually yes.

Do not touch them!

What the hell happened here?

It hasn’t happened yet.

Don’t kill him! We need to know if we’re compromised.

Why are you here? Who are you? How’d you know we’d be here?

We need to go.

What happened to the other guy?

I took care of him.

Well, I’ve seen too much. I’m still alive, which must mean you’ve decided to trust me.

Or maybe I lost my edge?

Mmm, your edge is still intact.

There’s a Cold War.



Time travel?

No. Technology that can invert an objects entropy.

You mean reverse chronology, like Feynman and Wheeler’s notion that a positrons and electrons moving backwards in time?

Sure, that’s exactly what I mean.

I have a master’s in physics.

Well try and keep up.

I mean the implications of this are…

Beyond secret.

Then why did you bring me in?

I thought we’d find a drawing and couple boxes of bullets.

Not as surprised as I was.

I’m going back to Mumbai to get some answers. I’ll set you up as a go between, but remember to you… It’s all about plutonium. Or when we’re done, they’ll kill you.

Won’t you have to do that anyway?

I rather that be my decision.

So would I… I think.

Your work? What did you find in the vaults?

Two antagonists. One inverted. We took out the regular one, but the inverted one got away.

Both emerged at the same moment?


They were the same person. Sator has built a turn-style in that vault.

A turn-style?

A machine… for inverting.

You told me that technology hasn’t been invented yet.

It hasn’t, he’s been given it by the future.

For what?

You have the best chance of finding out.

Have you met him?

I was close.

What if you have… something he needs?

Such as?

Plutonium-241. Sator tried to lift the only used 241 from under the CIA team at the opera siege in Kiev. He got the team. Not the 241.

Who did it?

Ukrainian security services. It moving to Tallinn in a week.

Helping an arms dealer steal weapons grade plutonium is unacceptable, Priya. I’m just gonna take him out.

No, no, no, no. No, Sator has to stay alive. He has to stay alive until we know his part in things. Manage the situation without losing control of the 241.

It is too dangerous.

A terrorist bomb , even one that can kill millions, is nothing compared to what could happen if you don’t stop Sator.

From doing what?
We are being attacked by the future.

And Sator helping. We have to find out how.

I saw the news about Oslo. Do you have the drawing?

You do not have to worry about it anymore.

You destroy it?

I didn’t think you’d want it back.

Does he know?

Not yet. So sit tight.

Sit tight? Every day my son spends with that monster, he thinks a little less of me.

It won’t be long. In the meantime, introduce him.

As what?

I’m a former first secretary from the American Embassy in Riyadh, we met for a party last June.

We were at a party in Riyadh, but I don’t think it was in June.

June 29, 7 to 7.30. Salmon was on the printed menu, swapped for Seabass on the night. Sator left early, that’s when we met. I came into Shipley’s in London. You ran into me here, and want to show me your yacht.

He’ll think we’re having an affair.

Then he’ll want to meet me.

Or have you killed.

Let me worry about that.

Did I look worried?

Sleeps 70 with crew. Two helicopters. Missile defense.

Afraid of pirates?

Andrei lives playing one government off the other. Till they turn, that’s his refuge.

May I join you?

Not sure Volkov take passengers just now.

Then we’ll take mine.


Who’s the American?

He’s a friend.

The man from Shipley’s.

That you tried to have beaten up.

I ask again. Who is he?

We met in Riyadh last June at the American Embassy.

Good with fists for a diplomat.

Paranoia is your department, Andrei. He seems nice. I invited him to the dinner.


He’s visiting Pompeii and Herculaneum.

Did you send him off? I promised him I’d go with him.

I explained you were busy. With your friend.

Hey!, easy fella, where I’m from you buy me dinner first.

Mr. Sator.

Don’t bother, Just tell me if you’ve slept with my wife yet.

Ahhh, no. Not yet.

How would you like to die?


You chose the wrong profession. There is a walled garden up the road. They’re going to take you and cut your throat. Not across, in the middle like a hole. Then we take your balls and we stuff them in the cut to block the windpipe.


It’s very gratifying to watch a man you don’t like, try to pull his own balls out of his throat before he chokes.

This is how you treat all your guests?

We’re finished.

Do you like opera?


Not here.

You sail?

I’ve messed around on boats.

Be on the dock at 8 ready to talk, I don’t mess around.

8 am.

Max missed too much school this year. I’m taking him to England. School won’t be ok with him missing so much.

Yes, they will.

Can I finish? You want the trappings of a king. We both know you’re a grubby little man playing power games with a wife that doesn’t love you anymore.

You seem… spirited today.

Do I?

Yes you do. Were you worried it had been destroyed? Rest assured instinct told me to remove it from the vault. I’ve always had instincts about the future. That’s
how I built this life you no longer value.

Sailing or diving?


What do you know about opera?

In 2008, a Russian missile station was occupied for a week. When the station was recaptured, three-quarters of a kilogram of plutonium was missing. The missing plutonium… appeared at the Kiev Opera House on the 14th.


What do you propose?

A partnership. I do not want that with you.

You can take care of yourself. There are no papers on you.

A trained arms dealer who covers his tracks. It’s not shocking.

By being an intelligence agent.


Burn to hell, Andrei!

This is not how you can steer a boat!

Yes, if you have to!

Why did you not let him drown?

I need him.

To sell guns?

I’m not who you think I am.

I know. He showed me the drawing.

Pardon. I had to get into the life of him. What do you think your husband is doing?

We both know he’s an arms dealer.

He is much more than that.


Andrei Sator has everyone’s life in his hollow hand. Not just yours.

Mr. Sator will talk to you.



Will he see me without pants on?

Trust me.

I do not fall for it twice.

Do you have a better option?

You will do anything to achieve your goal. You’re not thinking about me or my son.

What do you think he will do to me now?

Try not to use it. Against anyone.

Then that’s enough. Can you see? A resting pulse like a young man. Drink with me. I owe you my life now.

It was nothing.

My life is not nothing. And I do not like to be in debt to anyone.

So pay me by not taking revenge on your wife.

Do you think she loosened my harness?

It was my own fault.

Then help me steal the plutonium.

It is refined plutonium, so it must be handled and stored properly.

I know all that well. Are you going to teach me about radiation? Andrei Sator, who dug plutonium out of the ruins of my city as a teenager.


Stalsk 12. My home. One part of a warhead exploded at ground level, scattering the others. They needed people to find the plutonium. It became my first contract. Nobody even else bid, they thought it was a death sentence. But… one man’s probability of death… is another man’s possibility for a life. I staked my claim in the new Russia. Even now, my company is the only one to operate in the ruins.

The 241 is being transported through Northern Europe on its way to the longterm storage depot in Trieste.
I’m told you have resources in Tallinn.

Stay with us tonight. I insist.

What do you want?

We’re going to talk about today.

No, we’re not.

No? We’ll see.

Don’t think for a second you can treat me like you treat your other women.

And… how do you imagine… I treat these other women? Do you think I force them into conversation? Do you want to be quiet, fine. You can bite down on that.

Even a soul as empty and fragile as yours needs response. Is fear and pain enough, Andrei? I can not offer you anything else.

Then I have to settle for that.

Why did not you just let me go?

Because… if I can not have you… there is no one who can get you.

If you touch me, I scream so he hears it.

Do you think I’m letting him in?

Then you had to kill him.

Then the deal is over. So let me be, damn it.

Not now!

98. Not bad after that effort.

He was standing by the window.

I was curious.

My property should not concern you. Who are you? How did you get your information about the opera?

You would never deal with someone who was not good enough to be recruited. The CIA accounts for 2/3 of the market for fissile material.

They tend to buy, not sell. But we live in a twilight world.

Is that Whitman? That sounds nice.

Next warning will be a bullet in the brain.

No balls in the throat?

There will be no time for that… in Tallinn. Go there. I want Volkov on your team.

No. I provide the material. You pay me. Your wife is in charge of the handover.

She’s never involved.

That’s why I trust her.

Throw him ashore.

How do I contact you?

You do not.

How do I get money in advance?

Take better care of the plutonium.

What did you find on the gold?

No marks, no cast marks. Nothing.


Pick-up locations. He buries a time capsule, sends the coordinates and digs it up again to retrieve the inverted materials.

It seems to happen instantly. Where does he bury it?

A place that will not be discovered for centuries.

What did the soil samples show?

Northern Europe, Asia. Radioactivity.

Everything that was saved from Oslo has been sent here.

What am I doing here?

I do not trust the judgment of others.

The convoy through the city. What are we thinking?

Many people. Unpredictable traffic.

It is almost impossible to plan an ambush.

Good point. Is the convoy being monitored from the air?

Tracked via GPS. One wrong turn, and then the cavalry moves in.

We need weapons that send the message without firing. A fast car that does not look fast. Four heavy vehicles. All different. A bus, a bus, a truck. One of them has to be a fire truck. And there must be no trace of our planning. Nothing electronic. No papers. Sator should not attack us as soon as we have the material. Only his ignorance protects us.

You see, Kat? Some of my favorites. Singed, but ah, salvageable, wouldn’t you say?

It’s not my area of expertise.

Ah that’s right, you would never have anything to do with such things.

But this is where our worlds collide.

What is this, Andrei?

You know perfectly well what it is, Kat. The filthy business… That put those clothes on your back, and our boy in his school. But you thought you could negotiate your way around it.

The convoy drives through the city in ten minutes.

We’ve got to go.

I’m not going anywhere with you.

Look at me! And understand… You don’t negotiate with a tiger. You admire tiger until it turns on you, and you feel it’s true, fucking, nature!

Don’t. You stay right there.

Green, two minutes.

You ‘re not going to kill me.

I’ve already tried.

You pushed me off a boat, you not shoot me in cold blood.

My blood’s not cold, Andrei.

No, but you’re not angry enough. Because anger scars over into despair. I look in your eyes… I see despair.

Vengeful Bitch! Living off me thinking that you’re better! Enough!

Tell me everything as it happens.


Yellow, 60 seconds.

60 Check.

Blue, 45 seconds.

Blue, 45, check.

Okay, Red. We’re coming to you.

The three vehicles are in place.

Watch everything. Give me all the details.

Alight, all set?

Five. Four. Three, Two. One.

Now, Yellow!

We have a problem!

We need reinforcement! Shit!

The radio is down.

Are they still in motion?



Check the radio chatter.

I’ve seen samples of encapsulation in every weapon class. This is not one of them.

That’s what he’s after.

I can’t understand this.

You said you spoke Estonian.

It’s not Estonian. It’s backwards.

What the hell is that?

Go, go, go, go!

Don’t give it to him.

This isn’t plutonium.

It’s worse than that God dam it!


He’s getting away.

He left her in the car!
Go after her! Go, go, go, go, go!

Pull up along side.

Come on, come on. Closer!

Keep it steady! Keep it steady!

Hurry up!

Come on!

(?) that’s it, I’m calling in the cavalry.

What cavalry?

If you are not telling the truth, she dies.

I don’t know what you’re talking about.

You left it in the car, not the firetruck right?

Who told you that?

Just tell me if it’s in the BMW.

I don’t know.

Say it or I’ll shoot her again.

Leave her alone! Kill him!

I do not have time for negotiations.

Listen to me.


I can help you.




Next time she gets a bullet to the head.


One. Two, Three.

Okay! Okay. The car, The BMW, I left it in the BMW.

We will check if this is real (?).

It’s in the glove box!

Where did you leave it?

In the car or fire truck, which one?

Which vehicle did you leave it in, I need to know before I go out there.

I’ve already told you that.

I believe in you.

You wanted her here, I hope you’ll be happy…


Wheeler, go check the other side.

You two!

Where did he go?

The past.

It’s in the glove box!

We will go to check if this is real.

Three, two, one.

Okay! Okay.

Next time she gets a bullet to the head.

No. No!


Listen to me.

Two, Three.

I can help you.

I don’t have time to negotiate.

Tell me or I’ll shoot her again.

Leave her alone!

Just tell me if it’s in the BMW.

I do not know.

You left it in the car, not the firetruck right?

Who told you that?

If you are not telling the truth, she dies.

I don’t know what you’re talking about.

Medic! What’s her status?


Was she shot with an inverted round?

This is Ives. He’s one of us.

“US”! Who’s are these guys?

Priya’s, ours.

How did Sator know about the ambush?

It’s posterity. An ambush in the middle of the street leaves a record.

Bullshit! He knew every move we made! Every one of them! Somebody talked! Who was it? Was it you?

No. No.

At every stage, you’ve known too much. I’m going to ask you again. Did you talk?

Nobody talked. He’s running a temporal pincer movement.

A what?

A pincer maneuver. But not in space, In time. Half his team moves forward through the event, he monitors them, and then attacks at the end as he moves backwards. Then he knows everything.

Except where I stashed the plutonium. Which isn’t really plutonium, is it?

I told you it is what he was after. And you just told him where it was.

I lied.

Jesus, you lied about it?

He couldn’t verify inside the room. He’d have shot her anyway. Lying is standard operating procedure.

It has spread too far.

Meaning what?

She’s gonna to die.

Standard operating procedure.

Can’t, can’t you help her, can’t you do something?

Can you stabilize the inverse radiation by inverting the patient?

It takes days.

Lets go!

We took control of this machine minutes ago, before that it was Sator’s.

How long is she going to live on this side?

Three hours tops.

I’m taking her through. I’m not going to let her die. I’ll take my chances.

There’s no way of bring you back.

We find another machine.

A week ago? Where?


That facility is inside an airport security perimeter.

It’s impenetrable.

Mmm, it wasn’t last week.

We’re going in.

You might as well help us.

This is a reimbursement window.

If you approach the lock, and if you do not see yourself in it, do not go inside.

Why not? If you do not see yourself, you will not come out.

Does it work?

Yes. See for yourself. There is your answer. Came.

I clean and close the wound, but she needs time.

How long does she need?

Four five days. Preferably a week.

Neil, find us a way to Oslo. I’m going out there again.

What will you?

Prevent Sator from getting away with whatever I gave him.

No. You lied about where it was. Wait. You want to save her.

He wanted to kill her in the past. What happens if he does?

We can not know. If you change something there, you do not see the effect here.

What do you think?

What has happened has happened. We must save her here and now. If you go out there again, you might give him what he’s after.

They must not take her through again. Okay?

We can not stay here.

We do not have that much time. Find us a cozy shipping container, who has just come from Oslo.

It’s something cowboys. You have no idea what happens if you go out there.

I’m going out there, so do you have any tips?

Wheeler, letter him.

You need to have air with you. Normal air does not pass through inverted lungs. The most important rule: Never get in touch with the forward-looking version of yourself. That’s the point of the protective suits.

We do not have time for that.

Do your particles collide…



That would be bad, right?

When leaving the airlock, orient yourself. It will feel weird. When you run, you feel the wind in your back. If you encounter fire, ice will form on your clothes, because the heat exchange is reversed. Gravity will feel normal, but seem the other way around for the world around you. You may experience disturbances in your vision and hearing. It’s normal.

Can I drive a car? Cowboys.

The steering will feel different. Friction and wind resistance are reversed. You are inverted. It’s not the world.

Was the transponder at the checkout?

We’ve thrown the box away.

I’m moving backwards. That’s the ball I have to follow. Give me the tracker.

Okay. Are you ready?


The material is not in the box. Get the other sections of the algorithm to the hypocenter. He lied. It was not in the BMW.

So where is it?

I saw the handover.

You made me shoot her for no reason. But you got my heart rate above 130. No one has ever succeeded before. Not even my wife.

You left a terrible mess for Ives and his team. The heat exchange was reversed. You’re probably the first to get a cold shock from a gasoline explosion.

Nothing surprises me anymore. Are we on our way back to Oslo?

In a Rotas container.

He grabbed the material, Neil. I gave it to him on a silver platter.

I warned you.

Done is done. I’m fine now. But it’s hard to trust people who speak in half truths.

It is not fair.

You were involved before we met. Did you work for Priya?


Who recruited you, Neil?

It does not help you to know it now.

This is over.

And if we’re alive and you still want to, then you have to get my life story.

Sorry, I mixed you up in this.

What’s going on?

Neil here obviously knows more about it than I do. Good luck.

If we tell Kat something, Priya sees her as a threat.

Priya sees her as a threat now. She has a right to know why she might die.

Should I die?

Not if it’s up to us.

And it does.

Who are you?

Let’s start with the simple things.

All laws of nature…

The material is not in the box. Get the other sections of the algorithm to the hypocenter.

Are you hurt?

What’s the algorithm, Neil?

The plutonium is a section of it. One in nine. It is a formula in physical form, so it cannot be copied or communicated. It is a black box with one function.

Which is?

Inversion. But not objects or people. The world around us.

I do not understand.

As they invert the entropy of more and more objects, the two directions of time are becoming more and more intertwined. But because our environment flows in our direction, then we have taken over. They always swim against the current. It saved your life. The inverted explosion crashed into the surroundings.

It pissed against the wind.

The algorithm can change the wind direction. It can invert the entropy of the world.

And if it happens?

Then the game is out.

Can you be more precise?

Everyone and everything that has lived is wiped out instantly. Is that accurate enough?

Including my son.

The more you sleep, the faster you recover.

On a truck.

Now it does not last long.

I have thought about it. We are their ancestors.

If they destroy us, do they not destroy themselves?

Then we come to the grandfather paradox.


If you traveled back in time and killed your grandfather, how can you have been born so that you can commit the murder?

What is the answer?

Nothing. It’s a paradox. But in the future, those in power clearly believe that one can… kick grandfather down the stairs, prick his eyes out at him and cut his throat on him without consequences.

Can they be right?

It does not mean anything. They believe in it. They are willing to annihilate us. May I sleep again now?

No, listen here.


That time is reversed… Does that mean we are here now, not that it never happens? That we stop them?

Optimistically, you are right.

And pessimistic?

With parallel worlds we can not understand the relationship between… consciousness and more realities. Does it hurt in the head?


Try to get some sleep.

Shit. They did not drive us inside.

What do we do then?

We use the hole in the building. The chaos, right after the plane hit it. Get ready. Has she recovered enough?

I do not know. I’ve never done this before.

The firefighters are here.

Before Kat enters, I arrange Sator’s men and secure the safe.

Then you come with her.

How is your arm? Not so good.

We move as soon as we hear the engines.

Wait. Wait. You’re bleeding. Let me look at that.


Wait here. I’m moving in.

Come on! Run, run, run!


You knew it was me.

Why did you not say something?

It is complex when someone is plucking the bud by itself.

But afterwards?

I knew you would handle it.

Done is done. Who knows what would have happened if I had told you? The policy is to conceal it.

Whose policy? Ours, my friend.

We are the ones who save the world from what could have happened.


I’m here.

There comes something of a scar, but you manage it. You did it.

Did what? Andrei has the algorithm. You do not know where he is.

Or when.

Get Priya here to Oslo.


In two days she will tell me about the plutonium.

It does not stand to change.

We will see. Now just get her here.

Hello, Priya.

What’s going on? Where’s Neil?

He cares for Katherine Barton, who almost died because of you.

What have I done?

It’s something you do. In two days, you’ll get me to use plutonium as an arms dealer bait. I want to know why.

Did you let Sator get hold of plutonium?

No, I let him get hold of the algorithm. Tell me about it, Priya.

It is unique. The scientist who created it took his own life, so she could not be forced to create a new one.

One from the future?

About many generations.

Why does she have to kill herself?

Do you know about the Manhattan project? Before the first test blast, Oppenheimer was concerned that, whether it would create a chain reaction that would envelop the whole world.

They did it anyway, and it went.

She is the Oppenheimer of her generation. She creates a method to invert the world, but become convinced that by annihilating us they will annihilate the world.

The Grandfather Paradox.

But unlike Oppenheimer, she opposes, divides the algorithm into nine sections and hides them in the best possible place.

In the past. Here. Now.

There are nine nuclear powers. Ni bomber. Nine sets of the best-guarded material in world history. The best possible hiding place.

Nuclear storage facilities.

Sator’s mission has been funded and guided by his future throughout his life. He must find and assemble the algorithm.

Why do they choose him?

He was at the right time and place.

The collapse of the Soviet Union.

The most uncertain moment in the history of nuclear weapons.

How many sections does he have?

After the plutonium all nine.

Oh God. Therefore, you need to do it differently this time.

To change things? So Katherine does not get hurt?

So Sator does not get hold of the algorithm.

If that universe can exist… then that’s not what we live in.

Let’s try. You warn me.

No I do not. Ignorance is our ammunition. Frankly. If you had known what the algorithm is, would you have let Sator get it?

You want Sator to get the last section.

Only in this way does he gather the other eight.

I was supposed to steal it… and lose it?

The mission is completed.

You took advantage of me.

As you took advantage of Katherine. This is the standard procedure. You’ve done your part.

My part? I’m the protagonist of this operation.

You… are one protagonist. Did you think you were the only one who could save the world?

No. But it’s me. For I have not said where and when he assembles the algorithm.

You’ll be doing it soon.

No. I dont do that. Let’s join.

“US”? Why involve her again?

She can get close to him.

Does he still trust her?

He thinks she’s dead. But he did.

You see the world in a new way.

Now it’s your turn. If she survives. If you do not think she knows too much.

I can not.

So talk to the one who stands for loose ends. I need you to promise that she and her son will survive, Priya.

What does a promise in our industry mean?They will be safe. There is a meeting place off the coast of Trondheim. Get on it. Ives has a team ready to invert.

Do you have a lock? The technology we are trying to stop.

It is treacherous to fight evil with evil. But there is someone in the future who will let the algorithm continue its journey in the past. Do you understand… Tenet was not founded in the past. Tenet will be founded in the future.

It’s so crazy about those birds.

How are you feeling?

Say you want to kill him.

I can not.

Why not? You must have killed a lot of people.

Not with a dead man’s button.

His heart rate monitor.

He is obsessed with his health.

It is connected to a system. Another pile of emails set to reveal the pickup location, if his heart stops.

His death activates the algorithm. If he dies, the world will perish. No one dares kill him.

No, that’s not the point. He wants to take his own life.


He is dying. Inoperable cancer of the pancreas.

And he takes the world with him to the grave.

If he can not get her, then no one can get her.

He chooses where and when the world will go under. What moment does he choose?

You told about a vacation where you made him feel loved.


You said he disappeared. Which day?

Yes, but I do not know what day it was.

It was the 14th ten days ago. He was in Ukraine.

The attack on the Kiev Opera. How do you know that?

He was not on the yacht, so that’s his window.

To revisit the golden moment and let it be his last.

Everyone’s last minute. We have to snatch the algorithm without Sator discovering it. If he thinks it’s there, he’s killing himself.

But not the rest of us. Where is the pick-up location?

Shared knowledge, my friend.

Won’t you say that?

Ignorance is our ammunition.

But you have to be on the yacht, Kat.


You must prevent him from killing himself until we know the algorithm has been removed.

If I’m taken there, my son sees it. It must not be a painful moment, if it’s to be his last.

It does not have to.

So. We work our way back to the 14th, but without knowing where the place is, I can not prepare the big.

Do you know what a hypocenter is? Center for an underground nuclear test. Sir Michael Crosby told me about a detonation in Stalsk 12 on the 14th. The pick-up location is at the bottom of the hypocenter. The explosion buries the algorithm.

Then we better get it out of that hole before the bomb goes off.

On geled. Forward.


On geled.

Where’s Neil?

He must have gone through.

I did not say goodbye. This is a farewell, right?

I wish you did not do this, Kat.

The worst thing Andrei did to me was the offer he made me. That I had to go if I promised never to see my son again. I shouted and… cursed. But he saw it in my face for a brief second. I considered it. I do not know if I hate him most for what he has done, or because he knows about me. A chance to save his child. You have no idea what that means for a mother.


You killed people you hated.

It does not tend to be personal.

He is dying. Maybe it does not count.

It always counts, Kat. You’re not there to kill him. You’re the backstop. If we do not remove the algorithm and he kills himself, he will take us all to the grave.

Just do your part, okay?

It’s the 14th today. The coast off Siberia. Now we’re off. Continue one day to the back, then you can reach Vietnam.

Who gets me on board the yacht?

You get good help. When it’s over and you take care of your boy, go with it here. You may feel threatened. Press “talk”, say where you are, hang up.

Who gets the message?

The afterlife.

Stalsk 12. Hidden from the rest of the world here is a city where anything can happen. And today, in ten minutes, it will definitely happen. You are divided into two teams that have to do a time-squeeze maneuver. We are the Red Team moving forward. Put them on here. Our friends over there, the Blue Team, led by Wheeler, are inverted.

Why will they not let us see them?

Maybe we do not like what happened.

They got this briefing in an hour. Then they were set off on the edge of the hypocenter as close in time to the detonation as possible. Their goal was security and clarification. This briefing benefits from their experiences.

Both teams have clocks that count down. Our count down from ten from the landing… to zero at the explosion. Blue Team is inverted.

If you are not at the landing zone at zero, you will not get away from there. Understood?

We are clearing the landing zone so that the Blue Team can be evacuated. Then we move into the city. The buildings are abandoned, but we know there is a lock. Expect bitemporal resistance.

Do they have inverted guns?

Inverted, conventional, forward antagonists, inverted antagonists. On the other side of town is the ridge above the hypocenter. A smaller group takes the tunnel from the city to the bottom of the hypocenter. Blue Team found an entrance here. The bomb is in the rock here. High up so that it will cause the cave to collapse so that it is sealed.

How do we disarm the bomb?

The explosion must take place. Our task is not to be able to disarm the bomb, while the smaller group achieves its goal unseen.

Which is…?

You do not need to know. Other stupid questions? Well. Let’s get started. Let’s get ready.

I wanted to be in the first wave.

There is no first wave. Red Team and Blue Team operate simultaneously. Do not get on the helicopter if your thinking is only linear. Do you want to be on the team that steals the contents of the capsule?


It’s us.

We are the smaller group.

Only us?

No one who knows the contents of the capsule can leave the battlefield. I think we take care of ourselves.

There are 12 meters from the private deck down to the water. Can you jump from there?

On the head.

Do not let him die until you see my signal.

30 seconds!


We burst into a shock wave. Hold on!

Stand up!


We thought you were ashore.

I want to surprise Andrei.

The boss has left.

Lad mr. Sator find me here. And do not say anything to the others. I’m fixing the mess.

Miner! Miner!

They said you had gone ashore.

They said you flew.

I came back to see you and Max.

Max is on land with Anna. We need time after what happened.

It was just a stupid joke.

You think I’m a terrible mother.

I have higher thoughts about you than you have about me.

I want us to get better, Andrei.

In coverage!

Get me a fucking AT4! Shoot him! Now!

Cover source! Off! Off!

Come on! Go, go!


Get away from there! Come on!


The smaller group. Here.

It will be a beautiful sunset. I can get Max. Let’s share that moment with him. I’m making you a drink. Take my son back to the boat.

Time is running out. Come on!

If they see us, it has been in vain.

We must have derived them.

Do not think about it.

At my signal!

RPG, fire at the base!

That building on my signal!

Three! Two! One! Fire!


Move! Move!

Now there is no going back. Came.

What is it?

I borrowed it from the CIA.

What is it?

The way the world is going down. Not with a bang, but with a whimper.

I do not understand.

When I take it here, everything is over.

So do not take it yet.


Because we have to watch the sunset. And there’s some vodka left.

And Max is coming soon. They said they thought it was you, not Anna, who went ashore with Max.

As long as you can see the difference…

I just need to work for a moment, my beloved.

Mahir, has it been received?

Repeat: Not out of danger!


Repeats: Not out of danger!

Neil! Neil!


We have nothing that can blow this up.

Check him out. See if he has a grenade.

Does he have anything?

No, nothing.

Try to see. Can you break it up?

I hope not.

I paid a lot for that lock.

Do you like the place where my journey began and your ends?

It’s a little too radioactive for my liking. Radioactivity is my destiny. We worked where no one else would work. I traded with the devil. Money for time. We sold our future.

And now you will make the same mistake on behalf of the whole world.

It was not a mistake. That was the offer I got. What was your fault? You’re fighting for a cause you barely understand, with people you trust so little that you have told them nothing. When I die, the world dies with me. And your knowledge dies with you in a tomb, as if you were an anonymous Egyptian worker, trapped in a pyramid to keep the secret. You’re a fanatic.

What’s more fanatical than wanting to wipe out the world?

No, I want to create a new world. Somewhere, once, a man in a crystal tower presses a switch, and Armageddon is both triggered and prevented. Time itself changes direction. The sunshine we enjoyed will warm the faces of our descendants.

How can they want to kill us?

Because their garden rose and their rivers dried up. They have no choice but to turn around. We are to blame for that. Now that you know this, do you still want me to stop?

Yes. Each generation provides for its own survival.

That’s exactly what they’re doing.

No, you’re a traitor. You will kill everyone because your own life will soon be over.

Life goes on when I’m done.

Not your son’s.

My biggest sin was putting a child in a doomed world. Do you think God will forgive me?

Wait! Wait!

Because then…!

Cover me!

Go! Go!

You do not believe in God, the future or anything beyond yourself.

Everything else is belief. And I have no conviction.

Without it, you are not human. Then you’re just crazy.

Or a god. Of a kind.

As I said…

Do not. Cross.

Our time is up. I greet my wife lovingly from you.

You forget I have not met her yet.

Oh yeah. After you meet her, she dies. Then I greet her lovingly myself.

Do not…

Volkov. Shoot him in the head.

No more work now, beloved.

You have no idea what I’m talking about, do you?

But it sounds terribly important.

Where are you going?

Are you not hot?

What are you doing now?

I spilled some sunscreen.

So what?

You can slip into it.

Now just come here.

Turn around. You will enjoy it.

I do not know this. Do not think you have won.

Do not ruin the moment, Kat.

Do not think we are going to die with you. You must die alone, Andrei.

Come on, come on! The tunnel has been smashed. The gate is closed.

Mahir, can you hear me? Yes.

Wait. Repeat: Wait.

Look me in the eye. What can you see? Despair or anger? I’m not her who could love you despite the mental scars you gave her. I’m the vengeful bitch you gave scars on your body.



Ives, she killed him.

Is it received, Ives?

She could not wait. She killed him.

Come on! Do you think they made it?

Up the ass with it.

Kat, it was too early!

I could not let him die in the belief that he had won.

I knew you would find a way out.

No you did not? We’re okay, are we?

Yes, I found a way out.

We are out of danger.

I thought you were inverted.

I shifted gears halfway. You probably needed help here.

We needed help down there. How did you break the lock?

It was not me.

Did your team not need you?

I’ll pick them up next time.

Are you okay, Ives?

Yes, when I’ve got my breath.

No one who has seen it comes from here.


We’re hiding it. We take our own lives. That’s the only way we can be sure.

When it’s going to happen… we may have to decide for ourselves each.

You do not want to kill us?

If I find you, I will.

But you do not want to lead so thoroughly?

Yes, I will.

You’re not going to London to see Kat?

No. It’s way too dangerous.

Not even at a distance?

Not even at a distance.

Ives! Wait.

Do you really want to go in there again?

I’m the only one who could open the door in time.

No one is better than you at opening doors.

Can you see? It’s me again. I weave a new past into the mission.

Neil, wait!

We just saved the world. We can not leave anything to chance.

But can we change something if we do something different?

Done is done. It is an expression of confidence in the mechanisms of nature. Not an excuse for not doing something.

The destiny?

Call it what you will.

What do you call it?

The reality. Let me go.

You never told me who recruited you.

Haven’t you guessed it now? You did. But not when you thought. You have a future in the past. Many years ago for me. In many years for you.

Have you known me for years?

For me, this is the end of a beautiful friendship.

But for me, it’s the beginning.

We make amber in it.

You will love it. You’ll see. This whole operation is a time-squeezing maneuver.


Yours! You have only reached halfway. See you at the beginning, my friend.

We are the ones who save the world from what could have happened. The world will never know what could have happened. And if they did, they would not care. For no one cares about a bomb that did not go off. Only the one who jumped.

Do it before the boy comes out.

Is that your kind of grace? You gave me your word.

And I told you what it would be worth. Here. Today. How did you know?

Cannon Place at three o’clock. It’s probably nothing, but…

The afterlife.

Cannon Place at three o’clock. It’s probably nothing, but…

I said you had to start looking at the world differently.

I have to remove the loose ends.

It was never your job.

Whose task was it then?


I realized I was not working for you. We both worked for me. I’m the protagonist.

Then you better remove the loose ends.

The mission is completed.

It’s the bomb that did not go off. The danger, no one knew, was present. It is the bomb that can change the world.


10 thoughts on “Tenet (2020) – Transcript”

  1. Your transcript states:
    How’s your parachuting?
    I broke an ankle during basic training. Singh’s house isn’t tall enough to parachute off of.
    It’s bungee jumpable.
    I don’t think “bungee jumpable” is a word
    It may not be a word but it may be our only way out of that place. Or in to it for that matter.

    I have seen TENET three times and each time I hear the dialog as:
    Is it bungee jumpable?
    I don’t think “bungee jumpable” is a word.
    It may not be a word but it may be our only way out of that place… or in to it for that matter.

    1. No, the transcript is correct. Neil states “it is bungee jumpable”, he does not ask a question. He knows it is bungee jumpable.

  2. The very first line is “Wake the Americans”, not “take away the Americans. Then, someone nudges Protagonist who seems to be sleeping and throws him a patch with an insignia of the Ukranian SWAT.

  3. I’ve caught a few small errors;

    “A terrorist bomb , even one that can kill millions, is nothing compared to what could happen if you don’t stop Sator.
    From doing what?
    (?) Being attacked from the future.”
    – That line says “We are being attacked by the future.”

    “Sit tight? Every day my son spends with that monster, he thinks less of me.”
    – “he thinks a little less of me”

    “June 29, 7 to 7.30. Salmon was on the printed menu, but you swapped for Seabass on the night.”
    – “Salmon was on the printed menu, swapped for Seabass on the night”

    “Hey!, easy fella, where I come from, you buy me dinner first.”
    – “where I’m from”

    “Yes you do. Were you worried it had been destroyed? Yesterday the instinct told me to remove it from the vault. I always had instincts about the future. That’s how I created the life you no longer appreciate.”
    – “Rest assured instinct told me to remove it from the vault. I’ve always had instincts about the future. That’s
    how I built this life you no longer value.”

    “Stalsk 12. My home. Part of a warhead exploded at the ground, scattering the others. They needed someone to find the plutonium. It was my first contract. No one else bid on it. They thought one would die. But… one man’s probability of dying… is another man’s chance to create a life for himself. I took my position in the new Russia. To this day, my company is the only one operating in the ruins.”
    – “One part of a warhead exploded at ground level, scattering the others. They needed people to find the
    plutonium. It became my first contract. Nobody even else bid, they thought it was a death sentence. But… one
    man’s probability of death… is another man’s possibility for a life. I staked my claim in the new Russia. Even
    now, my company is the only one to operate in the ruins.”

    “Plutonium is transported through Northern Europe on the way to the permanent depot in Trieste. I hear you have resources in Tallinn. Stay here tonight. I insist on that.” (And lines continuing)
    – “The 241 is being transported through Northern Europe on its way to the longterm storage depot in Trieste.
    I’m told you have resources in Tallinn.

    Stay with us tonight. I insist.

    What do you want?

    We’re going to talk about today.

    No, we’re not.

    No? We’ll see.

    Don’t think for a second you can treat me like you treat your other women.

    And… how do you imagine… I treat these other women? Do you think I force them into conversation? Do you
    want to be quiet, fine. You can bite down on that.”

    Just some small changes.

  4. There’s your bargain! Your drawings and obvious fake.

    -> Where’s your bargain? Your drawing’s obvious fake.

    Would you check if the line needs correction into my suggestion?

  5. Nate Winchester

    Thx for this. I double checked on youtube and where you have “time-squeeze” in the transcript, the proper term from the movie is “temporal-pincer.”

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