Greetings again from the darkness. Some movies are made as pure visual entertainment. Others are made as a vision of a story. The best combine elements of both. The great ones WOW you with what you see on screen, while keeping your mind focused on the multiple dimensions of a story that just won’t let you jump ahead. The previous sentence is my feeble attempt at describing what happens during Inception.
Writer/director Christopher Nolan turns 40 at the end of this month. He now has 3 instant-classic films to his credit: Memento, The Dark Knight and now Inception. I am not a good enough writer to describe just how talented he his at making films. What I can tell you is that this movie gave me a “runner’s high” … it put me “in the zone”. As a viewer, I felt in perfect sync at each twist and turn.
There are two pieces of advice I will offer. First, go see the film at a theatre on the big screen. Don’t wait for NetFlix. Second, pay attention to every scene and every line. Trust Mr. Nolan to take you on this wild ride. You may be able to figure out the ending (if there even is one), but you will have missed the real point of the film … how did you get here?
Here is a brief synopsis: Leonardo DiCaprio plays an expert thief. He is a thief who steals ideas by infiltrating the dreams of his targets and snatching their ideas. A very wealthy tycoon played by Ken Watanabe hires DiCaprio for a risky project of Inception – the inserting of an idea into the subject’s mind through dreams, rather than the stealing of an idea. DiCaprio’s team is played by Joseph Gordon-Levitt (with physical brilliance while lacking gravitational force), Tom Hardy (from Rocknrolla), master chemist Dileep Rao, and new recruit Ellen Page (“Juno” plays a brilliant architect prodigy with a genius of space and dimension). Cillian Murphy plays the target and Michael Caine is DiCaprio’s father in law … the link between who Leo is now and his previous life with his wife, played hauntingly well by Marion Cotillard.
A perfect Nolan touch is Ellen Page’s character name – Ariadne. A quick google finds that Ariadne, in Greek mythology, fell in love with Theseus and helped him escape Minotaur’s labyrinth. The film is full of mazes and is itself a labyrinth punctuated by a stunning and powerful score by Hans Zimmer. You will find yourself bouncing from dream to reality, jumping into another’s dreams, layering dreams upon each other … oh, and watching a mind-bending special effect as the city of Paris is folded over on top of itself.
Clear your mind for 2 and a half hours and let a terrific filmmaker take you on a journey through mindspace that we never really pay attention to. The payoff is dream-like. This film was on my “films of interest” list on my First Half recap. If you missed the recap, here is the link: https://moviereviewsfromthedark.wordpress.com/2010/07/14/2010-first-half-recap/