Film Review: Inception

inception movie posterInception is a film directed by Christopher Nolan, starring Leonardo DiCaprio, Ken Watanabe, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Marion Cotillard, Ellen Page, and Cillian Murphy. Classified as a “heist film“, the film was released in July 2010 and runs for a total of 148 minutes.

Plot Overview

Dom Cobb (Leonardo Dicaprio) is  an extractor, a thief who steals information from his targets’ minds through entering dreams. When Cobb and his team

You know what? I don’t think I can pull a conventional film review out of my ass for this film. I think my reaction to this movie can be summarized in five words:

My mind. It was blown.

All my feeble attempts at coming up with a plot overview for this film didn’t even cover the tip of the iceberg that is Inception. There are so many concepts and ideas in this film that are hard for me to put into words – you’d honestly be much better off watching the film yourself, which I strongly recommend.

The subject of dreams is something that I would have written off as overused, but Nolan manages present a fresh and interesting take on them through this film. The basic premise of the entire thing is that Dom Cobb is an expert in stealing information from a target’s subconscious through entering their dreams (this is referred to as “extraction”), but then he is asked to do the exact opposite – to plant information in a target’s mind referred to as “inception”). That in itself is an interesting idea, but the whole process involved in getting into the target’s mind made it all the more intriguing. Cobb had a team of experts helping him out – a Point Man to research everything about the target, a Chemist to create the drugs required to enable the team (and the target) to enter the dream world, an Architect to construct the dream world they would be entering, and a Forger to impersonate someone close to the target to earn his trust.

Warning: Spoilers in the paragraph below.

Everything from architect’s the creation of the dream world and the various levels it contains (a dream within a dream within a dream within another dream, and so on), to the way that world is populated by human “projections” from the minds of the team and the target, to how a target’s mind defends itself when trained against extraction, to how Cobb’s projection of his late wife was screwing everything over, was sheer genius. I lost count of how many times I murmured “that’s brilliant” while watching the film.

Another thing that was so great about the film was that even though there were a bunch of complex ideas in it, the way they were explained was just right. Not too technical or deep, but not insulting to my intelligence either. I had a good idea of most of what was going on, but the explanations also gave me room to breathe and mull over certain things on my own.

Even the film’s pacing was something else. The way the scenes cut right into the next ones reminded me of how moments seem choppy in dreams… only the film was more lucid.

So, in summary (before my “rabid fangirl” mode completely runs away with this post)… Inception is a brilliant film that you must see. If my haphazard review isn’t enough to convince you, look for the viral marketing materials and sites (like this awesome “Dream-Share Manual”), or pay the official Inception website a visit.

3 thoughts

    1. Haha, the ending! I actually heard people in the theater going “WHAAAAT?” at the end. It’s supposed to be an open-ended thing that triggers discussion, I guess, but I get what you mean by not being able to decide if it was a cop-out or not.

  1. LOL, I heard mixed stuff about Inception, but I went to see it anyway over Toy Story 3 (watched that one in 3D the next weekend).

    End of the movie, cut to black, everyone was silent except for this one chick that went quite loudly, WHAT.

    I’ve read a lot of theories about the nature of the movie… most of which are in the Wild Mass Guessing page of the movie on TVTropes. @_@ the one I love the most is that the whole Inception team is basically a Movie Team. Director, Art Director/Costume Designer, Actor, Producer, Tech Team, and us, the Audience, then I just have to give props to the director who spent 10 years refining the script. Billiant.

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