Following is a 1998 British neo-noir crime drama film written and directed by Christopher Nolan. It tells the story of a young man who follows strangers around the streets of London and is drawn into a criminal underworld when he fails to keep his distance.
As Christopher Nolan's debut feature, it was designed to be as inexpensive as possible to make. Scenes were heavily rehearsed so that just one or two takes were needed to economise on 16 mm film stock, the production's greatest expense; and for which Nolan was paying from his salary. Unable to afford expensive professional lighting equipment, Nolan mostly used available light. Along with writing, directing, and photographing the film, Nolan also helped in editing and production.
Los Angeles Times reviewer Kevin Thomas was particularly impressed with the film, saying that it was a "taut and ingenious neo-noir" and that "as a psychological mystery it plays persuasively if not profoundly. Nolan relishes the sheer nastiness he keeps stirred up, unabated for 70 minutes." The New Yorker wrote that Following echoed Hitchcock classics, but was "leaner and meaner".TV Guide called it "short, sharp and tough as nails", praising its fast-paced storytelling and 'tricky, triple-tiered flashback structure'. David Thompson of Sight and Sound commented that "Nolan shows a natural talent for a fluent handheld aesthetic." Following has since been recognized as one of the most notable no-budget films of its time.