Inception (2010)

I don’t mind to sound corny or anything, but this movie really is a dream come true.

Inception deals with the concept of sharing dreams with Leonardo DiCaprio as Cobb, a conman who enters the dreams of others and steals ideas from their subconscious (known as “extraction”) for unknown employers. After a lengthy career in dream thefts and being away from his family, Cobb is offered a job of the seemingly-impossible task of “inception,” the crime of implanting an idea instead of stealing one, and he assembles a crew (Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Tom Hardy, Ken Wantanbe, Ellen Page, and Dileep Rao) to pull off the perfect crime with hopes of being able to return home.

Christopher Nolan, would probably be known to your everyday person, as the guy who directed The Dark Knight. That is true, but he is also the director of plenty of other movies, that the everyday person may not know about, that totally mess with your mind. Films like: Following, Memento, The Prestige, and Insomnia. In this, he combines both of his different styles together, and gets my favorite film of 2010 thus far.

The script itself has all the elements of The Matrix. There’s a lot of talk about life, and how we are living a dream-world, and our minds create illusions for ourselves, and all that other hickory-doo. However, it comes out in such a good way, that it’s too hard to ignore. It never shows us the “What if…” side, but always brings up the side about dreams, and our illusions, and how we make things up in our world, just to make ourselves feel better with the life we have, and what would we do if someone was to take them away from us. It makes you think a lot, almost too much for a damn summer blockbuster, and I might just think twice about my dreams when I wake up the next morning.

The plot, at first, may confuse the crap out of so many people, hell, it confused me, but after awhile you start to get a whole feel for the film, and you understand what’s going on, how everything happens the way it does, and although the answers may never be fully explained to you through words, you kind of make assumptions as the film goes along.  It doesn’t hold your hand the whole time, but yet, it doesn’t let you go, and fall behind, creating a wall between the material, and the audience, which is hard for any psychological thrillers in today’s film world.

But any film can have a good script, and cool plot, but still boring as shit. This is where this film is different from all others of the same kind. The action scenes were also very good. They were more stylized and tense than bombastic, something along the lines of James Bond, where Nolan obviously draws inspiration from, and I thought that it worked perfectly well for a film with this kind of concept. The tense situations the characters get into toy with the minds of the audiences without throwing them out of the film, and when bullets and fists start flying, you get treated to some of the most unique action scenes. But it’s not just the fight sequences that make this film fun, it’s the visuals, and all the tricks Nolan has up his sleeve to make things unique. The visual aspects in this film will take your breath away. I liked how Nolan, in a world where 3-D is on every the big screen every damn weekend, he sticks it straight, with the original 2-D visuals, which I think I loved more than any 3-D film I’ve ever seen. He uses a lot of CGI, but it doesn’t look like it at all, it really does look these people are walking around in a world, that they have created themselves, and as they start to change it around, it looks even cooler, cause your wondering, just how they made this seem all realistic. My favorite scene that rightfully shows how great of a director Christopher Nolan can be with the setting, and many tricks, is the fight scene in the hall-way. If you saw the first trailer, you have seen what some of it looks like, but the whole scene with that makes you think: “How in the hell did they do this?”. It is literally the greatest film sequence I have seen in awhile, probably one of my favorite Top 5.

The whole ensemble cast is what really lifts this too. Leonardo DiCaprio, is well, what you would expect him to be, is great as usual. He plays that sort of troubled, straight-forward guy in almost all of his movies, but it’s never really seem to have worn out. The film may be advertised as the Leo show, when in reality, its the rest of the cast, that keeps us in. Ellen Page ditches her smart-ass teen days, and actually shows some good acting skills, giving us a look at the potential she has, as a serious actress, although she will always be remembered as Juno. Joseph Gordon-Levitt, who is one my favorites, is showing up in more stuff, and is good to see on-screen cause he handles a lot of the big dramatic scenes, really well, almost showing up Leo. Yes! I said it! Gordon-Levitt vs. DiCaprio on PPV. That’s something I would always pay to see. Tom Hardy is good here, bringing a lot of funny moments to the film, but not without showing he is still a bad-ass, and can whoop some booty. Ken Watanabe is also good, however, I couldn’t understand him a lot, he still doesn’t lose his composure while on-screen. Cillian Murphy, another one of my favorites, shows up and gives some more good scenes, with an American accent, that actually seems real. It was also good to see Marion Cotillard, playing a different type of role, than the strong female lead. She is playing a crazy chick, and is shown in some pretty dramatic scenes, but she still holds her own, and I have to give her props for that, cause I could see plenty of actresses messing that up. I was disappointed to see Lukas Haas, Michael Caine, and Tom Berenger, get little bitch roles, but it’s whatever, I was glad with the cast they got.

The film is not perfect, the film doesn’t show us a glimpse into these characters lives. They don’t have enough in their roles to show how great they are or how great they can really be. But despite that, I still had a good time watching these actors perform all together.

Consensus: Inception is the rare summer blockbuster that has almost everything you could want in a film: fun action, interesting plot, original screenplay, unique and stylish visuals, inspired direction, and wonderful performances from an ensemble cast. It’s not perfect, but it’s damn sure as hell close to it.

9.5/10=Full Pricee!!!


  1. I see your point about the lack of character development, it was my gripe earlier on as well, but then again this movie is more about the concept of Inception, so there is more weight put on that than each individual characters. I do think that Leo’s Dom Cobb (heh, what a name!) is quite developed in that we’re able to see what makes him tick and what his deepest regrets are. I agree with you that the CGI is quite seamless and when we’re seeing it, we don’t get stuck at the technicality of it. The special effects enhance the story instead of distract us from the movie.

    • I see what you’re saying. Don’t get me wrong, Leo is good, as always, he just doesn’t play anybody different. But who cares, the plot and everything else is amazing.

  2. I agree, it has elements of the Matrix but it’s different. I heard someone saying that it’s a rip-off from the Matrix…but I really have to say that he is wrong. I’ve watched the Matrix more than 10 times, so I know how different the 2 movies are…But they are the same in sense of being a freaking amazing movie.

    I like your description on the cast, and Cillian Murphy is one of your favorites…he is Nolan’s favorite too 😉

    • I don’t think it’s as much as a rip-off, but just shares the same elements. Like the world we live in, is just a world of reality or fantasy. But the cast is what really intrigued me first. I know not many can say that about this one, but once I saw this ensemble, I was right there.

  3. Wow! You really went for this one, huh? I just couldn’t go gaga over this one as much as I wanted to. Too many gaps in the story, flaws in the script and an OVERLONG 2nd half. I am so glad you said that about Watanabe — I wrote the same in my review..hurts the movie when you can’t understand what the hell he is saying. I enjoyed your review, though we differ greatly. I liked it, it was ok…just not buying into all the praise that everyone is giving this modest achievement.

    • I feel bad. I liked it even less than CMrok. Ended up walking out during the zero gravity scene.

      They definitely used fx for it. And I guess it was supposed to be cool, but I honestly for the life of me felt like if this is what it takes to entertain people (cardboard cutouts fighting each other in zero gravity) that I may have outgrown action scenes.

      I guess that WAS an action scene. Hard to say, didn’t watch it…

  4. I find the Matrix dated now, since in my opinion the fashion within that movie matters as much as everything else. I don’t think Inception has the same problem, but then I’m not looking at it from 11 years in hindsight.

    Listening to Edith Piaf now, by the way.

  5. JGL and Tom Hardy should’ve gotten together.

    I think Nolan avoided CGI as much as possible, which is great. No way a computer could’ve done the zero-gravity fistfight.

  6. While I won’t deny how compelling it is, I can’t help but feel that Nolan made a lot of mistakes in this film. From the lack of compelling character development to the way he plays it safe with the dreamscape, I didn’t find the film to be as engaging, creative or enthralling as so many have.

    In part, I think it’s because this film isn’t as novel an experience for me. I’ve been watching a lot of films recently dealing in surreal dreams and playing with the structure of time and I’ve seen a lot of what Nolan has done in this film done better in other films.

    Still, it’s quite a feat he brings so much together in one film but I wonder if that sheer sense of overwhelming factors isn’t compensating for the lack of detail, nuance and complexity in certain aspects of the film.

    • I agree that some elements of the film are not very well developed. I was particularly disappointed that we are not given a true reflection of the real-world that these characters inhabit – I would have liked to have seen how the concept of “extraction” had affected the nature of society and of human relationships.

      On the other hand, I don’t think this lack is an oversight on Nolan’s part – I think it’s fairly intentional. In Inception, Nolan isn’t trying to moralise about human behaviour, or tell us what is wrong or right, he’s trying to explore the ways in which his artistic form can mirror the content of the movie and to emphasise the ways in which the experience of film closely resembles that of dream. When the credits role, we become aware that we don’t quite know how we got here.

  7. The Tom Hardy/Joseph Gordon-Levitt combo is dy-no-MITE. These two are so funny together, and Simon/Ripley convinced me that they also have crazy sexual tension.

    I wish more people would talk about how good Ken Watanabe is. We don’t know very much about Saito, his character, but Watanabe gives him a lot of intensity and a trace of sadness that is appealing. I also don’t agree with many other reviews I’ve read which peg the characters as boring or unappealing. I think the emotions are there; we just have to dig.

    Also, I’ve read numerous reviews actually criticizing Nolan’s dream worlds for being too similar to reality (although with gravity shifts, etc.). In my opinion, this is not a flaw but a strong point. It’s much harder to identify with a dream world where NOTHING is like the waking world. The dreams in “Inception,” I think, appropriately mimic the average person’s dream: there are elements of the familiar, but with surprising and sometimes frightening tweaks.

  8. Great review!

    Some two-and-a-half-hour-ish films feel like two-and-a-half-hours or more, but the time I was sitting in the cinema watching Inception just whizzed by.

    True it’s going to get many comparisons to The Matrix, and much as I love the trilogy, I think I’d come back to Inception more.

  9. lot of us bloggers griping about character development in this movie, but im not buying it.
    hard to develop character when youre plunging through dreams. or something.

  10. I loved the way they plunged you into the action right at the onset, almost forcing you to be confused before slowing it down and explaining the whole process.

    Character development is overrated in a movie like this. They did a great job of developing Cobb and Fisher, but it would have been impossible to do the same for the rest of the cast (Page, JGL, Hardy, etc.). It’s so refreshing to see something so imaginative when all we’ve seen are remakes, reboots, sequels and rehashes of old movies.

  11. This again is a great review. I wish I had the words to describe and articulate what I’ve seen on either the big or small screen. I’ve always wanted to be a film critic (just to see free movies, I admit), but still a cool gig. Any pointers?

  12. i thought the movie was so fucking boring. i just didn’t get it at all. i’m starting to think everything in the whole movie was a dream. total recall and the matrix were better than this piece of crap.

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