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Inception (2010)

The essence of a movie can usually be described in one sentence, which gives you enough information to get a feeling what the movie is about. This sentence has been formed based on an idea. When that idea has been thought up the script writer start expanding on it. Together with set builders and many other people involved in preparation they are the architects who create the world in which the movie will be set. This can be a single room or many locations, anything is possible.

When preparation is done the director and actors step into the world and take care in filling in all the small details. They do this by improvising, making changes to scenes or shooting it a specific way. All this takes places within the confines of the concept for the movie.
When the movie finally has been edited, it’s up to the person that goes to the cinema to step into this temporary reality. If the movie is a good one you’ll disappear in it, the world around you no longer exists and you forget that you are sitting in a chair at the cinema. You are actually in the place that is shown on the screen. The ending of the movie is the shock that takes you back to reality. If the movie was powerful and had some messages that resonate with your own ideas they might even become part of your own values. If that’s the case, the whole team behind making the movie has made a masterpiece.

Inception uses this concept, but instead of movies they use this on dreams. Christopher Nolan ( Following, Memento, Insomnia, Batman Begins, The Prestige and The Dark Knight) shows his vision on what’s possible in your dreams, but has he managed to create a masterpiece?

When you take a look at Nolan’s previous movies, you’ll come to the conclusion that he has managed to deliver quality movies. After the success of the new Batman movies he has managed to make his mark as one of the top directors in Hollywood and has been given the opportunity and money to make Inception.

Inception is about a team of thieves that do their work in the dreams of their victims. So their goal is not to steal money or other physical things, but to get their “hands” on thoughts or ideas the person has, which they can then deliver to whoever hired them. Of course this is the ultimate way to do industrial espionage and the team is asked by a company’s top executive if they are able to plant an idea in the mind of one of his competitors. The team is not sure that this is even possible, but still decide to take the assignment.

The setup is comparable to other heist movies like Ocean’s Eleven and The Italian Job, in which the first step is to find the right people for the team after which they can put together their “plan of attack”.
The result is an exciting action movie, which looks amazing. Some sets are very impressive, especially when you know that they are set up in such a way that they can move and tilt. I will not go into further detail, but the result is stunning. It will definitely provide you with some “WOW!” moments, just like the first Matrix movie did a couple of years ago.

Before seeing this film I heard that it was a movie which was hard to understand, so I was preparing for something like Donnie Darko, which will make you think even more after you have finished watching it. I’ll admit that you will have to keep focused, but I was impressed that such a complex story has been told in such an understandable way. Reason for this are the characters who explain a lot of things to each other and secondly the great editing, which will make sure you do not get lost in this complex maze.

Some of you may already have looked at the score and wonder why I didn’t award this movie a 10. I agree that the movie had potential for it, but there are reasons I decided to score it a 9.

After finishing the movie I did not get the feeling that I wanted to immediately see it again. I saw it last week and I still do not have that feeling. I do want to see it, but maybe in a couple of years. The reason I have this feeling is because the concept needs so much explanation that the first part spends a lot of time on it. When you watch the movie a second time, you will already know the rules. It’s something I’m not looking forward to seeing again so soon.

The second reason is that I think not enough time was spent on the backgrounds of the main characters. The only person that you’ll get to know more about is Cobb (Leonardo DiCaprio). His personal story is told in a lot of detail, but because the other characters only seem to be there to help him they felt as empty as the agents in the Matrix movies. They are used to tell the story without you knowing much about them. This made the movie feel very sterile to me, I missed a more personal touch which could have given the movie more “soul”. So I didn’t connect to the movie in the way I would have liked.

Despite these criticisms you can conclude by looking at the score below that Inception is an excellent movie. It offers amazing action scenes which you’ll want to see again. The idea for the movie is unique and has been executed very well.
Christopher Nolan has managed to make another movie which you just can’t afford to miss. It’s not my personal movie of the year, this is still Mr.Nobody (which I’ve already seen twice) as I liked the more personal aspect of it. I can imagine that for a lot of people it will be though, as it’s an impressive piece of film making.

Score: 9

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  • Lesya says:

    Well, I see your point :) and I love it that you explain why you didn’t give 10 to the movie.
    To my mind, it’s actually Cobb’s story, it’s his biography that’s unveiling during the film. That is why Nolan focused the plot on him. In my opinion, everything is in balance in this way: we have a lead and everything is about him; and we have supporting actors who back up Cobb and help him to reveal his story for us.
    Anyway, I’m glad that we all have a bit different opinions. It’s more interesting and fair :)

    August 10, 2010 at 1:05 pm
  • Nostra says:

    Yes, it is Cobb’s story, but I would have loved to see more personality in the other characters. They just seemed to be empty canvases, which I thought it was a shame.

    August 11, 2010 at 10:00 am
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