In a summer full of sequels, remakes, reboots and movies based on existing properties Inception is one of the few movies that is actually truly original in every aspect. The studio took a big gamble on green-lighting this movie and it’s something that I hope pays off for them in doing so because Inception is truly a gem of a movie, especially compared to movies like Step Up 3D which are released around the same time. Nolan is proving to us that he might become, or actually already is, Hollywood’s next boy wonder. Now with a solid resume of good, if not brilliant, movies.
Inception revolves around a group of people, led by Cobb, who posses the skill of going into somebody’s dreams and steal something from there. Company secrets for instance. After one of these “robberies” doesn’t end the way it should this team is given the somewhat forced opportunity to do an inception with somebody. An inception is the placement of something in a dream, an idea for instance. Cobb and his team are given the assignment to enter the dream of a dying billionaire’s son who’s about to inherit a large company and plant the idea of splitting the company there. An idea must feel natural to the dreamer in question, as if he actually thought of it himself. This premise will have Cobb and his team going within a dream within a dream which will require the audience to pay great attention to what’s going on.
Inception is kind of The Matrix of 2010. The same studio, an original script with a dream-world element and a bit of an underdog. Inception could easily be shown in art-houses as well as multiplexes and it’s pretty impressive in the way it brings big budget action scenes and an intelligent story together. Like The Matrix and some of the previous movies by Christopher Nolan it entertains on multiple levels; The popcorn one and the intelligent one. Afterward discussions will be about the dream-element of the movie, but also about the gravity defying fight in a hotel hallway or the streets of Paris that curl up.
Despite all the praise this movie deserves there are some minor things I missed in the movie. The character of Cobb is scripted very good, given depth by introducing his deceased wife (which is the second time in a row a character played by Leonardo DiCaprio has a deceased wife, Shutter Island being the previous one). He is our antagonist and a well written one at that. The same can be said about the mark played by Cillian Murphy, who has some serious daddy-issues. But the team of Cobb is sadly kind of flat. Basically none of them is given any real back story or motivation to this kind of work. Only Ellen Page as Ariadne is a bit more developed but even her motivation to join this mission isn’t quite clear. Then again, money is always a good motivator.
Fellow critic Roger Ebert noticed how he couldn’t find a hole in this movie whereas he could with Memento. Well there is one I found; how many times in your life did you make a decision based upon a dream you had? Especially one that concerns a choice that deals with billions of dollars. Even if someone tried to screw you over in your dream, you would probably talk to them the next day and say “Last night I had this crazy dream about you…”
Then again: Inception isn’t really about that so the hole just kind of closed itself up, because in a dream anything is possible. And that also goes for movies.