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Oppenheimer Film Review

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Summary and Plot

Hi EC Blog Readers,

Jessica here with a review for one of this summer’s biggest film releases!

I didn’t manage to do the ‘Barbenheimer’, where dedicated film fans watched both Barbie and Oppenheimer on the same day, but I did watch the three-hour nuclear epic Oppenheimer.

Set during the Second World War (1939-1945), the film follows the story of Julius Robert Oppenheimer, an American theoretical physicist who developed the atomic bomb for the Allies. The race to develop this weapon before the Germans did, to influence the outcome of the war, was intense.

It was interesting to get a glimpse of Oppenheimer’s personal life and life within the scientific community of 30’s and 40’s America, which was full of heated disagreements and bitter rivalries. The amount of work and the number of people who were involved in the project was phenomenal, as was their sense of responsibility and later guilt. The bomb was dropped, with horrific consequences, on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Japan in 1945.

In a memorable scene, Oppenheimer confessed to US president Truman that he felt he has blood on his hands, to which Truman replied that no one cared who made the bomb, they only cared who dropped it.

Cillian Murphy as physicist Oppenheimer


The film has a fabulous cast, especially Cillian Murphy in the role of Oppenheimer, who apparently starved himself to lose enough weight to look similar to the extremely thin physicist.

Another recommendation for fans of this brilliant actor is the incredible series Peaky Blinders (Series 1, 2013) which follows the rise of a crime family in 1919, Birmingham. (Great to familiarise yourself with a Birmingham accent!)

Another actress, playing the role of Oppenheimer’s love affair and very much worth watching is Florence Pugh. She also starred in the terrifying horror, Midsommer (2019), where a holiday to Sweden for a group of friends is not what they expected.

Tickets please!

Star Power

Well-known American actors Matt Damon and Robert Downey Jr. also have roles in this film and supposedly volunteered to reduce their usual salaries because they wanted to be part of the project so much.

Another great film to watch with Matt Damon is in The Martian (2015) about a space mission gone wrong.

Robert Downey Jr, is famous for his role as Sherlock Holmes (2009 and A Game of Shadows 2011). There are rumours of a possible third film in the works…

Enjoy watching Oppenheimer, you’ll have a blast! (no pun intended whatsoever.)

Improve your English!

A reminder to students watching films on Netflix, there are lots of ways to improve your English through film.

  1. Watch the film in your language first, then watch again in English with English subtitles.
  2. To improve your listening, see how much you can understand in English with no subtitles, then rewatch with English subtitles.


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