Movie Review: Inception


Inception is a good movie that I took forever to get around to watching. It isn’t perfect and it relies heavily upon belief in some sketch premises to watch but other than that it’s worth it.

The movie also made a distinct mark on pop culture, I am speaking of course about the inception noise which after its debut in this movie made an appearance in a bunch of other movies. So much so you could probably date the movie based on that noise.

I still prefer the Simpsons parody to the real thing although I feel as if I say that about a lot of things. But regardless it stands up to the hype even if it isn’t something I’d pick of the shelf the watch over and over again. I think the reason for that is that it’s bogged down by a lengthy run time and heavy symbolism and plot that isn’t always explained well or that doesn’t pan was out entirely.

I suppose my first thought was “Yay the old man knows what a spinning top is” which is probably an honest thought if not an interesting one.

My main problem with this movie if I had to pick something is that you aren’t eased into anything you are presented with a lot of details with the general idea being that you just accept it and i understand that’s how all movies work, they wouldn’t have evolved as a form of entertainment or an artform without suspension of disbelief, and my issues isn’t that the things couldn’t happen but rather it’s all forced upon us so as to get to the next stage of the movie and yet even towards the end the movie is still explaining things to us.

So far my thoughts on the movie have been less than stellar but I don’t want to give the impression I didn’t like it, in fact I’d be more than happy for some of the elements of the movie to be real, I’ve always loved the idea that we have entire worlds within our mind that we could access if we could just breach some internal boundaries. The idea of being lost in your own mind is less enticing but you have to take the good with the bad.

In my notes for the movies I used a phrase that I enjoyed and at the risk of repeating myself I’m going to use the phrase so it appears in the final review. Since I was young I’ve been fascinated by the complex realities we weave inside our own heads, Inception is a movie reliant upon that fact and I love it because of that fact.

Something that occurred to me, Leonardo is no longer young enough to play a doomed heartthrob (see titanic and romeo and Juliet) but while he’s grown up and is a great actor he is not my idea of a typical action hero, he does make a surprisingly good one. He’s no Jason Bourne though I’ll say that much.

The movie explained that when you see destruction  in the dream i.e buildings it is a visual representation of inner turmoil or external physical damage. Something I wondered though, if you purposefully damaged something, smashing a window for example how would that affect the person who’s mind you are in would it cause some unseen damage, would they suddenly forget blowing out the candles on their 15th birthday cake or collapse into catatonia, or would it go unnoticed because the reality and by extension the damage isn’t real.

Inception had many viewers questioning their reality, and I think something as simple as a spinning top falling being enough to drive you nuts for two and a half hours is ingenious.

I hate the whole memory plant thing. Sure someone can tell me to think about elephants but I’ll think about them in such a way that the idea is mine. Purple elephants with fu man chu’s and ponchos.

I don’t know if perhaps I was thinking to deeply into it but I loved the element of Jet setting in the movie. All the foreign landscapes adds to the feel that it’s a dream. The escapism of it all.

Often we are our own worst enemies we want what is band for us and often follow self destructive paths, we see this clearly in Cobb, because of the thing with his wife, he misses her, subconsciously his mind needs and desires her but because of the trauma involved in losing her, the lengths she was willing to go to prove reality to herself he also fears her and this created a doppelganger is his wife who runs through his mind and causes trouble.

The first proper scene with Robert made me think of his role in batman especially with the whole dreams and psychology and perspective thing. The whole thing reminds me of Scarecrow.

I like Ellen page in this role. She’s smart and impressive and provides us an outsider to the whole dream thing so we have a conduit for the information we need to learn.

Tom hardy is so good in this. Before I watched Mad Max: Fury Road I hadn’t really seen him in anything and so I was surprised by his acting chops in this.

Also Saito is a really good character. Honourable and a little bit dangerous. I like him. Even dying he still wants to honour his agreements.

I can understand the stress of knowing your world is an illusion, every pleasure and pain would feel hollow because you aren’t really experiencing it but personally if you were going to get stuck anywhere limitless subconsciousness sounds great especially if it’s malleable i.e your own dream.

This movie i’m sure at some point made people think, we’ve all questioned reality from some point, probably the same way people did when the Matrix came out. And in fact this movie has many of the same bones as the matrix, which isn’t a criticism because both are bloody good films.

Cobb’s character is so tragic he really is like his character in shutter island. Both have issues of reality, issues with their dead wives and both I feel cling to their own version of reality rather than deal with guilt or real life.

Something that occurred to me that with only a modest amount of tweaking this could totally be a James Bond script. Gunplay, foreign locales and even scenes of military forces chasing our characters down a snowy mountain top.

Despite their antagonistic start and limited time together the ending between cobb and saito really does feel like old friends getting together again which I like. It feels genuine.

which reminds me something I enjoy about movies even though they abuse it relentlessly is how they play with time….oh no this bomb will explode in 5 minutes but in reality ten minutes or more can pass before we’re down to those final few seconds to stop the detonation. Inception is honest about it, they know they need more time that is allotted to them and so explained it rather than leaving it up to that pesky suspension of disbelief. In fact the timelessness of the whole thing adds to the movie and is one of its selling points.

Finally I’ll leave of with this, the movie reminded of a Harry Potter quote as I watch this about It does not do to dwell on dreams and forget to live’. I can certainly understand the temptations. Absolute creative control. Abilities beyond reality but it in the end real life and real experiences need to win out. I think I mentioned that I took me so long to get around to watching this movie because I felt it was over-hyped and as good as it was I wasn’t wrong, so with that in mind I’m going to give this film a 6.5/10.


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