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Six movies to watch after you've seen Oppenheimer

All these movies are rich in drama but, sadly, lack a giant explosion at the end.

Oppenheimer screenshot
Image credit: Universal Pictures

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It was one of the biggest movies of 2023 and looks set to be one of the major winners at the upcoming Oscars, so it is high time you got around to seeing Oppenheimer. Christopher Nolan's film is a thought-provoking look at the man largely responsible for one of the most important moments of the 20th century. However, it isn’t the only great biopic out there that will keep you glued to your screens.

If you’re looking for something to watch after you’ve seen Oppenheimer, here are our top suggestions.

The Founder

The Founder Screenshot
Image credit: The Weinstein Company

While the atomic bomb changed the way wars were fought in the wake of World War II, McDonald's changed the way America ate forever. Michael Keaton plays the unscrupulous Ray Kroc, who is the man who made McDonald's into one of the most recognizable brands on the planet. If you’re expecting to see him portrayed positively, think again. The movie goes out of its way to show how he cheated and stole from almost everyone around him to build a real estate empire that happened to sell burgers at the same time.

The Imitation Game

The Imitation Game screenshot
Image credit: The Weinstein Company

The atomic bomb wasn’t the only major, top-secret project to change the course of World War II. Cracking the Enigma Code, which enabled the Allies to effectively spy on German messages without them knowing, not only gave the UK and the US a huge advantage against the Nazis, it also helped jumpstart the development of computers as we know them today. Benedict Cumberbatch plays Alan Turing, the tragic but brilliant cryptanalyst who changed the world forever.

The Theory of Everything

The Theory of Everything screenshot
Image credit: Universal Pictures

Stephen Hawking is one of the most famous physicists of his time, but this film barely mentions his academic work. Instead, it focuses on the impact that Hawking’s rapidly deteriorating physical condition had on his relationship with his first wife, Jane. Eddie Redmayne won an Oscar for his portrayal of Hawking, which is one of the more heartbreaking stories on this list.

A Beautiful Mind

A Beautiful Mind screenshot
Image credit: Universal Pictures

How do you cope when you can’t trust what your mind sees? That is the problem facing mathematician John Nash. For much of the movie, Nash believes that he has been tasked with finding Soviet codes in magazines, but it is revealed that he has been hallucinating many of the most important relationships in his life. Eventually, he is awarded the Nobel Prize in Economics for his revolutionary work in game theory, but only after a series of relapses and eventual acceptance of his mental health condition.

Malcolm X

Malcolm X screenshot
Image credit: Warner Bros.

Few people are more important to the US Civil Rights Movement than Malcolm X. While he is usually portrayed as a counterpoint to MLK’s principle of non-violent resistance, this film shows Malcolm X as a more complicated figure than many of us were taught. The movie follows Malcolm X from his early days through his civil rights campaigning, incarceration, and conversion to Islam, right through to his assassination in 1965.

28 Days Later

28 Days Later screenshot
Image credit: 20th Century Studios

This isn’t a biopic like the other films on this list, but it is worth watching simply because it is the breakout role of Oppenheimer’s star, Cillian Murphy. Murphy plays a coma patient who has woken up to find British society has collapsed as a “rage virus” has ripped through the population. While it goes out of its way not to say the word zombies, the movie is credited with breathing new life into the zombie movie genre with its grounded, terrifying portrayal of the monsters. Murphy is fantastic as its confused and scared protagonist, though we aren’t sure if he’s going to return for the upcoming sequel, 28 Years Later.


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28 Days Later

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A Beautiful Mind

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Oppenheimer

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The Founder

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The Imitation Game

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About the Author
Trent Cannon avatar

Trent Cannon

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Trent is a freelance writer who has been covering anime, video games, and pop culture for a decade. (He/Him)
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