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How to watch Oppenheimer at home

Christopher Nolan’s blockbuster is coming to streaming service NOW after winning Best Picture at the 2024 Oscars

Cillian Murphy as J. Robert Oppenheimer in Oppenheimer
Cillian Murphy as theoretical physicist J. Robert Oppenheimer in Oppenheimer. (Universal)

Last summer, audiences were treated to Christopher Nolan’s latest film, Oppenheimer, his first movie since 2020’s Tenet and his split from Warner Bros.

Billed as an epic thriller about “the man who changed the world”, this $100m (£80m) drama went on to win seven Oscars in March 2024, including Best Picture, Best Actor and Best Director.

Shot on IMAX cameras both in colour and black-and-white, Nolan’s three-hour biopic charted its title character’s contributions to the Manhattan Project and the creation of the atomic bomb.

As the film prepares to arrive on streaming service NOW, here’s everything you need to know about Oppenheimer, including the plot, cast and reviews.

Where can I stream Oppenheimer?

Christopher Nolan on the set of Oppenheimer with Cillian Murphy
Director Christopher Nolan on set with Cillian Murphy. (Universal)

Oppenheimer will be available to stream on NOW from 12 April, following its huge success at the 2024 Oscars. The biopic won Best Picture, while Nolan was awarded Best Director, Murphy took the Best Actor crown and Robert Downey Jr won Best Supporting Actor.

The film is also available to watch at home via digital download, 4K, Blu Ray and DVD.

It was originally released in cinemas and IMAX worldwide in July 2023. After Nolan’s falling out with Warner Bros over the day-and-date release strategy for its 2021 film slate on HBO Max, Universal Pictures is financing and distributing the film.

Read more: Cillian Murphy reveals 'unlikely' rockstar inspiration for Oppenheimer

Amusingly, Nolan’s old muckers at Warner counter-programmed Greta Gerwig’s Barbie opposite it on the same day and in doing so, helped break records via the ‘Barbenheimer viral craze of seeing both movies back-to-back.

What have critics said about Oppenheimer?

Cillian Murphy as J. Robert Oppenheimer in Oppenheimer
The acclaimed biopic won seven Oscars in March 2024. (Universal)

The fallout to Oppenheimer has been resoundingly positive.

Our own write-up praised Murphy’s performance, calling it a “career best” in a war drama that was labelled “masterful.” The Independent commented on Nolan’s depiction of this harrowing real-life tale, explaining that he delivers it with a “sickly wonder” while the Evening Standard also noted how the filmmaker tackles Oppenheimer’s post-bomb remorse.

The film currently holds a 93% fresh score on Rotten Tomatoes. Read a review round-up below...

Yahoo Movies UK: Cillian Murphy gives a career-best performance in masterful war drama (4-min read)

The Independent: Clever, imaginative and Christopher Nolan at his best (4-min read)

Evening Standard: Christopher Nolan’s dark, immersive epic gives Cillian Murphy the role of his career (3-min read)

The Telegraph: A film that dazzles on the most intimate and cosmic scales (4-min read)

Total Film: Christopher Nolan firing on all cylinders (2-min read)

Who is in the Oppenheimer cast?

Emily Blunt and Cillian Murphy in Oppenheimer
Emily Blunt plays activist and scientist Kitty Oppenheimer. (Universal)

Cillian Murphy plays the title character, theoretical physicist J. Robert Oppenheimer. This marks his sixth film collaboration with Nolan after the Dark Knight trilogy, Inception, and Dunkirk, but the first time he’s been in the leading role. And not for lack of trying.

“I have always said publicly and privately, to Chris [Nolan], that if I’m available and you want me to be in a movie, I’m there. I don’t really care about the size of the part,” Murphy told AP in 2023. “But deep down, secretly, I was desperate to play a lead for him.”

Cillian Murphy as J. Robert Oppenheimer in Oppenheimer
Murphy previously appeared in the Dark Knight trilogy, Inception, and Dunkirk. (Universal)

“You realise this is a huge responsibility. He was complicated and contradictory and so iconic,” Murphy said of Oppenheimer, the man. “But you know you’re with one of the great directors of all time. I felt confident going into it with Chris. He’s had a profound impact on my life, creatively and professionally. He’s offered me very interesting roles and I’ve found all of them really challenging. And I just love being on his sets.”

Additionally, Nolan’s Interstellar surprise guest-star Matt Damon plays a major role as Lt. General Leslie Groves, the engineering officer who directed the Manhattan Project.

Dr. Robert Oppenheimer, right, director of the Institute for Advanced Study, listens intently to a discussion by Dr. Albert Einstein regarding matter in terms of space. (Photo by © CORBIS/Corbis via Getty Images)
Dr. Robert Oppenheimer, right, director of the Institute for Advanced Study, with Dr. Albert Einstein. (Corbis via Getty Images)

Other returning Nolan collaborators include Sir Kenneth Branagh, James D’Arcy, Matthew Modine, David Dastmalchian, and Casey Affleck. Another Dark Knight alum, Gary Oldman, has a cameo role as US President Harry S. Truman.

Working with Nolan for the first time, Emily Blunt plays activist and scientist Kitty Oppenheimer; Robert Downey Jr plays Lewis Strauss, Oppenheimer’s opponent in the debate about developing the hydrogen bomb; and Florence Pugh plays Jean Tatlock, an old flame of Oppenheimer’s and a member of the American Communist Party.

Robert Downey Jr in Oppenheimer
Marvel star Robert Downey Jr plays Lewis Strauss. (Universal)

Rounding out the star-studded cast (among others!) are Rami Malek, Benny Safdie, Olivia Thirlby, Michael Angarano, and Josh Hartnett.

And that’s not all – there’s also Jason Clarke, Alex Wolff, Tony Goldwyn, Jack Quaid, Emma Dumont, and Dane DeHaan.

We could go on all day listing even more names, but suffice to say, it’s a suitably epic ensemble.

What is the plot of Oppenheimer?

Cillian Murphy and Emily Blunt in Oppenheimer
The film covers some of Oppenheimer’s life after the Second World War. (Universal)

Per Universal’s official synopsis, Oppenheimer is “an epic thriller that thrusts audiences into the pulse-pounding paradox of the enigmatic man who must risk destroying the world in order to save it”.

Often credited as “the father of the atomic bomb”, Oppenheimer was a theoretical physicist whose involvement in the war effort began with his appointment to the Office of Scientific Research and Development, (OSRD) whose role was to explore the weapons potential of uranium.

The screenplay was adapted from Kai Bird and Martin J. Sherwin’s Pulitzer Prize-winning biography, American Prometheus: The Triumph and Tragedy of J. Robert Oppenheimer, which was published in 2005. The biography spans from his early career to the beginnings of the Cold War and his life after the Second World War.

Three of the men who played leading roles in the development of the atomic bomb visit the American Chemical Society Atomic Exhibit in Grand Central Palace. Looking at a photo of the atomic explosion over Nagasaki, Japan, are left to right, Brig. Gen. K. D. Nichols, Prof. H.D. Smythe who wrote the government atomic report and J.R. Oppenheimer, director of the Los Alamos, N.M. atomic labratory.
Brig. Gen. K. D. Nichols, Prof. H.D. Smythe who wrote the government atomic report and J.R. Oppenheimer, director of the Los Alamos, N.M. atomic laboratory. (Getty)

Talking about the film at Cinemacon in 2023, Nolan said: “I know of no more dramatic tale with higher stakes. Like it or not, J. Robert Oppenheimer is the most important person who ever lived. He made the world that we live in for better or for worse. His story has to be seen to be believed.”

When command of the OSRD was handed over to the military in 1942, Groves selected Oppenheimer to head the top-secret Manhattan Project in a purpose-built laboratory at Los Alamos, New Mexico.

The joint efforts of Oppenheimer and the scientists at Los Alamos eventually resulted in the world’s first nuclear explosion, the Trinity nuclear test, in July 1945. The famously CG-averse Nolan revealed that the film recreates this event using real explosives, which should make most of us happy that he didn’t film anywhere near us.

The film also covers some of Oppenheimer’s life after the war, including subsequent accusations of disloyalty to the United States and a pivotal security hearing before the House Un-American Activities Committee in 1954.

Is there a trailer for Oppenheimer?

Cillian Murphy in Oppenheimer
The film was adapted from an award-winning biography of Oppenheimer. (Universal)

Universal launched the official teaser for Oppenheimer in July 2022 — nearly a full year before its release — via a dynamic, livestreamed teaser that counts the hours, days, and months to the anniversary of the Trinity test with every viewing.

The first full trailer was released in December 2022 after it appeared in front of Avatar: The Way of Water, another film with strong links to the IMAX format. Watch it below.

A third, more revealing, trailer was released in May 2023 which gave a more straightforward look at the plot of the film.

Oppenheimer will be available to stream on NOW from 12 April