Inception (2010)

9.0 Overall Score
Story: 9/10
Acting : 9/10
Visuals: 9/10

Creative story, some great visuals, great cast

Some of the car chases and gunfights are not very inspired, thinks it is deeper than it is

Movie Info

Movie Name:  Inception

Studio:  Legendary Pictures

Genre(s):  Sci-Fi/Fantasy/Action/Adventure/Drama

Release Date(s):  July 8, 2010 (Premiere)/July 16, 2010 (US)

MPAA Rating:  PG-13


Ever feel like the world is blowing up around you?

Dreams are about to become reality!  Dom Cobb (Leonardo DiCaprio) is a dream extractor.  He enters people’s dreams and steals information from them with the help of a team.  When Cobb is given the opportunity to clear his name and return to his family by Saito (Ken Watanabe), he learns that he must create inception…the planting of an idea that is perceived as “real” to the dreamer.  Entering the mind of the son of an energy baron named Robert Fischer (Cillian Murphy), Cobb and his team made up of the architect Ariadne (Elliot Page credited as Ellen Page), the producer Arthur (Joseph Gordon-Levitt), the forger Eames (Tom Hardy), and druggist Yusuf (Dileep Rao) must plant the idea for Fischer to break up his company.  Unfortunately, Cobb has secrets that could destroy the mission….including the memories of his wife Mal (Marion Cotillard).


Mirror, mirror on the wall

Directed by Christopher Nolan, Inception is a sci-fi action thriller.  The movie was praised by critics and did big business in the box office.  It won Academy Awards for Best Cinematography, Best Sound Editing, Best Sound Mixing, and Best Visual Effects with nominations for Best Picture, Best Original Screenplay, Best Art Direction, and Best Original Score.

I have to say that I like a lot of the concepts of Inception, but it isn’t a movie I just love.  The movie is a solid, complete action movie with thinking, but I think that it tries much, much too hard to be complex…and it expects its viewers to just be dumbfounded by it.


Sometimes you need a little kick!

I’m not saying that many viewers won’t be thrown by the twisting plot (and there are parts where you do have stop and think about what is going on), but it isn’t as “thinky” as it would like to think that it is.  I do give the film credit for not being a simple summer action flick and would prefer more films like Inception, but it also I don’t think compares to some other big sci-fi films with much simpler visuals like Blade Runner or even Children of Men.  Both of those films up the sci-fi (which generally is plot) and downplay the action…Inception increases the action and downplays the sci-fi.


Worst hotel valet

The cast for the movie is stellar (and picked over from Nolan’s other films) and essentially the who’s who of young Hollywood with Leonardo DiCaprio, Elliot Paige, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, and Tom Hardy as the anchors of the team.  Marion Cotillard is good as the obsessed Mal and Dileep Rao has a small role that easily could have been bigger as the medicine man.  I always like Ken Watanabe who plays the corporate exec, and Michael Caine has a small role as DiCaprio’s mentor and father-in-law.  Cillian Murphy plays the hapless victim of the mind-screw, and Pete Postlethwaite plays his father in one of his last roles (with Tom Berenger is his business associate).  Former child actor Lukas Haas has a small role as DiCaprio’s first (and failed) architect.


Your subconscious sucks!

The visuals of the movie also are quite amazing, but fail in a way.  I find the second and fourth subconscious stunning, but the snowy third subconscious is pretty weak (the first level is supposed to “feel real” so I can give it that).  It feels like a rather visual cop-out when compared to the trippy hotel and the surreal city by the sea.  The floating, hovering and bending reality works, but I think some of the gunfight and chase action sequences are a let-down.

*****Spoiler Alert***** The next big question is what happens at the end of the film.  Is DiCaprio still dreaming?  It is one of those questions that you shouldn’t ever know and the director might not even know…and it doesn’t matter.  I pretty much figured from the first viewing that the movie was a dream since his children don’t age or grow and it indicates he’s been away from them for years…it seems like a simple answer since everything works out perfectly…like in a dream.

Inception is eye candy with thought, but it isn’t my favorite eye candy.  I like what the movie tried, and I like a majority of the movie, but I don’t really need to see it more than twice.  Though I am rather hard on the film, I do think it is a very good film but minor flaws keep me from completely falling for it (so close).  It has a “kick” but not enough kick to make me stop dreaming.

Related Links:

The 83rd Academy Award Nominations

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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