I think audiences get too comfortable and familiar in today's movies. They believe everything they're hearing and seeing. I like to shake that up.
— Christopher Nolan
Christopher Jonathan James Nolan (b. 1970) is an English-American screenwriter and director, known for making several Mind Screwy neo-noir movies, and for reviving the Batman film franchise. As a good sign of his quality control, his worst rated film on Rotten Tomatoes, The Prestige, still has a 76% "Certified Fresh" approval rating (if you discount Man of Steel's 56%, for which he served as a producer, rather than a director).His films tend to emphasize themes of obsession, deception, guilt, and order versus chaos. And all of his films focus on a man lying to himself or others to cope with grief.
Mind Screw: Nolan's short film Doodlebug would be the most straightforward example. His resume outside of the Batman films to a lesser extent as well, which can be confusing to follow due to their chaotic narrative structures.
Moral Dilemma: Many and the 'right' choices are often debatable. Usually happens to the protagonists, but sometimes not even secondary characters or extras are spared.
Mr. Fanservice: The men in Nolan's films tend to be extremely...pretty.
Multi Take Cut: He sometimes downplays this trope, such as in the hospital explosion in The Dark Knight. As shown here, Nolan filmed the explosion from several angles, but decided to put only two in the finished movie.
Playing Against Type: If you only see the casting list of his movies without knowing the characters the actors play, it'll be difficult to guess who are playing the good guys and who are playing the villains.
Plot Twists: All the freaking time! Even though it's quite difficult to pull off in this time and age.
On the other side of the camera, he collaborates with his brother Jonathan on writing (see below), his wife Emma Thomas produces, Lee Smith edits, Hans Zimmer often scores his films, and Wally Pfister has done the cinematography for all but one of his films (which was Following and it was during a festival showing he met Pfister, they have worked together since).
Reconstruction: The Dark Knight Saga in particular, which takes the pretty fantastical concept of a masked vigilante superhero dressed as a bat and grounds it in a somewhat realistic worldscape.
Auteur License: Hollywood is under the impression that any film in which he has the slightest involvement will turn to box-office gold. Considering his solid three-film streak, it's not exactly far-fetched.
Limited Wardrobe: Nolan's signature dark suit, no tie, and dress shirt with a few buttons open. Sometimes he includes a vest or tie.
Person as Verb: After his approach on the Batman film series, "Nolanize" has been used as a term used by fans, meaning rebooting a science-fiction/fantasy series to strip away all unrealistic elements from it.