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5 movies like ‘Oppenheimer’ to watch for more biopics about people who changed the world

The GC team developed a list of five must-see flicks that are sure to be equally as introspective and thought-provoking.

By Culture Editor

Cillian Murphy as J. Robert Oppenheimer in 'Oppenheimer' CREDIT: Universal

Oppenheimer is undoubtedly one of the biggest films of 2023. The film released in theaters on July 21st and garnering a mind-blowing $200 million (MYR 911 million) during its first two weeks of release in the United States alone.

The movie tells the life story of the scientist behind the creation of the atomic bomb, J. Robert Oppenheimer, all in an extremely poetic way. Thanks to the sophisticated mind of Christopher Nolan, Oppenheimer takes you on a journey ultimately that leave an impact on the mind, body and soul of every viewer.

While Oppenheimer might be the only film about J. Robert Oppenheimer himself, there are plenty of other biopics about people who changed the world that are sure to catch your attention....

  1. Tesla

While Oppenheimer is centered around scientist J. Robert Oppenheimer, Tesla is centered around scientist Nikola Tesla (Ethan Hawke), the under-appreciated founder of many forms of electrical motors and machines.

Being far less known than his colleagues Thomas Edison and George Westinghouse, the science-focused film gives Nikola Tesla the recognition he deserves, sharing his life story and achievements in an extremely intriguing way. 

Where to stream: Amazon Prime Video, Hulu

  1. Interstellar

Interstellar is another one of Christopher Nolan’s must-see films that Oppenheimer fans are sure to love, doubling as one of Nolan's masterpiece.

Interstellar follows the lives of Joseph Cooper (McConaughey) and Dr. Amelia Brand (Hathaway), two astronauts who embark on an adventure to find a new home for humanity within outer space when disaster strikes on Earth. Throughout the movie, we see the realities that come with space exploration, causing the science fiction film to be just as thought-provoking as Oppenheimer.

While Interstellar may not appear similar to Oppenheimer, you will see exactly how they correlate after just one watch of the respective films; the cinematography and overall aesthetics of the movie.

Where to Stream: Amazon Prime Video, Paramount+

  1. The Theory of Everything

The Theory of Everything is another biopic that you need to add to your watchlist. 

This film follows the relationship between Stephen Hawking (Eddie Redmayne) and his first wife, Jane Wilde Hawking (Felicity Jones). With his fame as a world-renowned physicist, as well as his deteriorating physical condition due to his battle with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), the viewer witnesses the struggles that the duo faces as a married couple, ultimately leading to the demise of their relationship by the end of the two-hour film. 

Although the movie is centered more around his relationship rather than his scientific discoveries, Stephen Hawking is often compared to J. Robert Oppenheimer, due to their ability to push the boundaries of physics and discover things that have since altered the trajectory of the United States, and even the world as a whole. 

With an Oscar Award-winning performance by Eton-educated Eddie Redmayne, as well as a plot that might even left you crying, be sure to grab some tissues before you sit down and watch The Theory of Everything.

Where to Stream: Amazon Prime Video

  1. Selma

As all Oppenheimer viewers know, the creation of the atomic bomb was a game-changing moment in United States history. While it tells an entirely different story, Selma also highlights a moment that changed the trajectory of our country, with an emphasis on the Civil Rights Movement.

The critically-acclaimed film tells the tale of the civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. (David Oyelowo) and the marches he set up in 1965, with the goal of securing equal voting rights within the United States. In a spine-chilling account of this historical moment, Selma showcases the prejudice and racial injustice that the participants experienced throughout their journey for equality, causing all viewers to feel uncomfortable.

This unsettling feeling is reminiscent of how we felt watching Christopher Nolan’s Oppenheimer, with each and every viewer reflecting on humanity by the time the credits begin. Selma is truly a must-see film that is equally as magnificent as Oppenheimer

Where to Stream: Amazon Prime Video, Paramount+

  1. The Social Network

This film stay true to Oppenheimer’s themes of science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

The unique film is centered around the life of Mark Zuckerberg (Jesse Eisenberg), as well as the origin of social media as a whole. Showcasing various legal battles and personal challenges Zuckerberg faced throughout his life, as well as appearances from Andrew Garfield, Justin Timberlake, Armie Hammer, The Social Network has an all-star casts.

While social media may not appear to be on the same playing field as the atomic bomb, both inventions made a massive impact on the world as soon as they were created (we are talking on the constant distraction on whatsapp, as well as constant comparison on Instagram), which you can see in Oppenheimer and The Social Network, respectively. 

Where to Stream: Amazon Prime Video

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