In Tenet the attack on the Opera happens the same day as the attack on the Stalsk-12 mine.

It seems to me there is no reason these two events should happen the same day, except that this simultaneity leads Sir Michael to link the Opera events with the Stalsk-12 mine and confirm Andrei's involvement. Michael said:

Two weeks ago, the same day as the Kiev opera siege, we spotted a detonation in northern Siberia just where Stalsk-12 was.

It looks like the simultaneity is only there to make the plot work. Is there another reason why the same date was chosen?

  • 1
    Wasn't it this date because it was the day where Andrei supposedly would end his life (on his Yacht, at the coast of Vietnam)? I didn't have the impression that it was also the day of the opera raid.
    – Napoleon Wilson
    Sep 14, 2020 at 11:44

1 Answer 1


I don't think those events needed to happen on the same day, but it sets up the events of the movie as a palindrome.

In addition to the opera scene and the scene in Stalsk-12 happening at the same time, the Protagonist and Niel discover the turnstile at the same time future, inverted Protagonist and Niel rescue Kat. And the Estonian chase in the middle of the movie obviously starts normally and then gets inverted.

The movie is effectively palindromic this way.

  • 1
    Thank you. I didn't realize that. So within the plot it is still a lucky coincidence but I see now why it had to start and end on the same day.
    – Florian F
    Sep 16, 2020 at 7:27
  • @Alchemist's answer is good. I'm adding mine only so that I can include this image:![enter image description here](i.stack.imgur.com/93Wa6.jpg) It's a word square, instances of which were created throughout Europe over a period of a thousand years. It can be read from top to bottom as well as left to right (and indeed in reverse in both dimensions). All the elements are simultaneous and intertwined. You can't eliminate or move any word without destroying the others. Sator, Arepo, Tenet, Opera, and Rotas all happen at once. Dec 5, 2020 at 5:17
  • @MichaelStern where does that image come from? Also, post an answer!
    – Luciano
    Jan 12, 2021 at 9:58

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .