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*** This review may contain spoilers ***
I'd like to keep my review rather to the point.
Pros: 1. its theme - dream is a fascinating topic to say the least. There are a lot of unknowns in dreamworld.
2. its plot - there are several sweet twists and unpredictable turns.
3. its edgy drive - although you know what's coming next, still you feel jumpy about it when it does.
4. its rapid storyline - the story moves fast from one scene to another, making the viewers feel like on a roller coaster ride. At times, it's hard to keep up, even after watching it several times.
5. its sophistication - there is a lot of information to remember and digest. This is the very thing the modern moviegoers are after, I believe.
6. its realism - okay, pun intended. The movie explains (or at least tries to) the ins and outs of what dream is about and how it functions, some of which are very familiar with and dear to us.
Cons: 1. its poor character development - although the acting was convincing enough there was not enough of character development. I wonder how many people really felt connected to the main character(s) after watching the movie. Yes, the movie talks about emotional struggles but it was more of an action film than anything else, if you ask me.
2. too many distractions - I found that the movie had more characters than necessary. They may play certain roles in the plot but they seemed more of distractions than anything else. I wish the movie was more focused.
3. a bit preachy - I noticed that the characters would explain things about dreamworld and then the exact things happen later in the movie. I'm afraid, Inception overused this trick.
In conclusion, its theme is fascinating but its delivery is not without room for improvement.
I highly recommend you to go and read Somewhere carnal over 40 winks, if you dig this kind of flicks.
What is the most resilient parasite? An Idea! Yes, Nolan has created
something with his unbelievably, incredibly and god- gifted mind which
will blow the minds of the audience away. The world premiere of the
movie, directed by Hollywood's most inventive dreamers, was shown in
London and has already got top notch reviews worldwide and has scored
maximum points! Now the question arises what the movie has that it
deserve all this?
Dom Cobb(Di Caprio) is an extractor who is paid to invade the dreams of various business tycoons and steal their top secret ideas. Cobb robs forcefully the psyche with practiced skill, though he's increasingly haunted by the memory of his late wife, Mal (Marion Cotillard), who has a nasty habit of showing up in his subconscious and wreaking havoc on his missions. Cobb had been involved so much in his heist work that he had lost his love!
But then, as fate had decided, a wealthy business man Saito( Ken Watanabe) hands over the responsibility of dissolving the empire of his business rival Robert Fischer Jr.(Cillian Murphy). But this time his job was not to steal the idea but to plant a new one: 'Inception'
Then what happens is the classic heist movie tradition. To carry out the the task, Cobb's 'brainiac' specialists team up again with him, Arthur (Joseph Gordon-Levitt), his longtime organizer; Tom Hardy (Eames), a "forger" who can shapeshift at will; and Yusuf (Dileep Rao), a powerful sedative supplier.
There is only one word to describe the cinematography, the set designs and the special effects, and that is Exceptional! You don't just watch the scenes happening, you feel them. The movie is a real thrill ride. The action scenes are well picturised and the music by Hans Zimmer is electronically haunting. Never, in the runtime of the movie, you will get a chance to move your eyes from the screen to any other object.
Leonardo, who is still popularly known for Jack Dawson played by him in Titanic, should be relieved as his role as Dom Cobb will be remembered forever. His performance may or may not fetch him an Oscar but it will be his finest performance till date. The supporting cast too did an extraordinary work. Christopher Nolan, ah! what a man he is. His work is nothing less than a masterpiece and he deserves all the awards in the 'Best Director' category. If "Inception" is a metaphysical puzzle, it's also a metaphorical one: It's hard not to draw connections between Cobb's dream-weaving and Nolan's film making, intended to seduce us, mess with our heads and leave an ever-lasting impression.
To conclude, I would just say before your life ends, do yourself a favor by experiencing this exceptionally lucid classic created by Nolan!
My Rating: 10/10
Thanks & Regards
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Films about dreams and the subconscious are usually not very
straightforward and almost always weird. "Inception" is no exception to
that rule, but like its cinematic predecessors who have explored the
contrast between and the questions of what is real and what is illusion
(i.e. "The Matrix" (1999), "The Cell" (2000), "Abre Los Ojos" (1997) &
its American remake "Vanilla Sky" (2001)), you really can't look away,
nor should you.
"Inception" is an excellent and breathtaking movie that may be one of the only films released so far during the Summer of 2010 that lives up to its hype. It is a nearly perfect and highly original film that holds your attention until the credits roll. The less you know about this movie going in, the more you will be entranced by seeing it.
Leonardo DiCaprio plays Dom Cobb, a world class criminal who, with the help of a team of sleep experts, works his way into people's subconscious and steals what people value most: ideas directly from their minds. In his last assignment to possibly clear his name, he is assigned not to steal an idea from someone, but to plant one inside that person's mind. The difficulty comes when certain people are trained to block their ideas from being taken.
That plot summary only covers the basics of this pretty complicated story, but to describe every plot detail would take away the magic of this film you must see yourself to believe. DiCaprio is good in his role, but unlike many other films he has starred in, this is perhaps his only role where his character alone does not carry the weight of the movie on his shoulders or share it equally with one other co-star. Instead, this great ensemble cast teams together to make this movie work, just as their characters collaborate to pull off such a unique heist. Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Ellen Page, and Tom Hardy are especially good in their roles.
The special effects in this film were also very good, which is amazing considering their simplicity compared to the "Matrix" movies. There are slow-motion shots, but no impossible kung fu fighting sequences. It's especially interesting when the film gets into the architecture of certain dreams, and impossible sequences are filmed in a way I've never seen other than in drawings.
However, the special effects would mean nothing if the story wasn't good. For this reason, even something as simple as a spinning top holds your attention in a way you would never think it would when seeing it in this film. The credit here can be given to writer and director Christopher Nolan, who has not made a bad film yet. There are many twists and turns in this film, but Nolan never loses his focus in the process of telling the story. If Nolan does not get nominated for Best Director and/or Best Original Screenplay next Oscar season, there is something terribly wrong with the Academy.
That being said, there was still a lot about this film I still don't get, and may require multiple viewings to better understand. However, some of the best films I've seen are confusing at first. "2001: A Space Odyssey" (1968) is a film I've seen a couple of times, and still don't understand completely. It still has a major following, though, as I'm positive this movie will. It's an incredibly entertaining movie, but it also makes you think and continues to do so after you leave the theater.
Usually I try to be careful with over hyping a film, or setting the
expectations too high, as film geeks all are guilty for, however for
Christopher Nolan's Inception, this really is not possible.
This is possibly one of the only perfect films I have ever seen. It is absolutely confident in every way, something which is extremely refreshing, even more so than Avatar. Christopher Nolan gets some slack for making great to look at but ultimately heartless affairs, which I for one do not agree with, however I do not think anyone can argue that here. The emotional aspect of this film not only ties it all together but is really the centre of this film, it is the focus.
I do not want to over simplify the film, by simply calling it Kubrick doing Bond, or Gondry on a huge budget, because I am sure it will be called that but it is far more than that, it is something I do not think Kubrick could have ever made. It is pure Nolan, and pure greatness.
I hate writing something which is pure fan-boy gushing, but its really difficult here. I did not find a thing I did not like about it, I am sure if maybe I saw it a second time, maybe I would find something about it I didn't like, but not the first time. The way it is cut, means that there is always action on screen, if not, then the visuals are interesting enough to keep your eyes glued.
The final hour of the film, is possibly one of the most complicated action sequences put on film. You have to constantly be paying attention to remember all of the layers of what is happening. Without spoiling anything, all I have to say is that is what this film is about, that is what makes this film so great, layers. Once you have seen this you will now what I am talking about.
All of the actors are fantastic too, Di Caprio is the stand out here. Yes, this is probably due to the fact he is the star and given all of the emotional weight, but he handles it perfectly, similarly to his performance in Shutter Island. Ellen Page, whom I usually hate, gives a great performance here. Tom Hardy gives a break out performance here, he is quite the bad ass.
I hope audiences are ready for a film like this, a pure auteur driven film which does not sacrifice a single frame for the studio. I would hope this film will change Hollywood, as it is 100 percent the directors vision yet it is definitely a marketable film, much like District 9, yet I do not think it will.
I cannot recommend this film anymore than I have, I just have to say everyone and anyone should see it. Sorry about all the gushing, it is just so hard not too.
If you liked this review check out my new film blog: http://thedeletedscene.wordpress.com
I saw Memento very recently, something that turned out to be a great
miss.I saw it again, just to make a couple of thins straight-and i'll
definitely do the same with Inception.
Christopher Nolan keeps improving himself, with even more complex and multilayer script like this.And i thought Memento was hard to reach by most of the viewers, but no.Inception will keep you mesmerized and captivated by the genius, that's hidden behind it.And not just directors and screenwriters (or with other words-Nolan), but with acting and sound-and effects and editing as well.
When you have a cast like this-i mean Leonardo DiCaprio, Joseph Gordon-Lewitt, Michael Caine, or Marion Cotillard (a personal favourite), the movie just keeps going flawlessly.Most of the crew is the same the Nolan brothers worked with on TDK and earlier in Batman Begins.So the Oscar noms in those categories are a certainty for me.
The only thing one could have against the movie, is the headache one could have.See, most of my friends go to the movies for brainless action, they enjoyed Iron Man 2 and The A-Team, but this movie-you have to see it at least twice, to understand it.The levels and the layers on which thing are happening are so many, that one surely'll miss something vital.This is a reason for not fitting to the mass audience, but i hope that won't happen, because Nolan is one of my favourite directors/writers, and he showed, that the brainless action flicks aren't all of it.There are still movies like Inception out there and still people like the Nolans to make those movies, so it's not all lost.And i hope this movie could show the audience that the story is still important for the experience one could receive, not the endless, constant explosions.Because this is really a one of a lifetime event.
Saying that, i must say, that in a world full of remakes, reboots, sequels, prequels and God knows what, this is a unique chance to see something different and unmatched so far-a strong movie, that, surely will be Nolan's latest masterpiece! My Grade won't change-it's the same for all Nolan movies-sheer 10!
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
What is going on with the IMDb user reviews lately? It's like the masses can no longer be trusted. In the last month, the users have decreed "Airbender" the worst abomination ever, when in fact it's just an average movie. User reviews raved over "Despicable Me", when it was about as entertaining as a "Dexter's Lab" rerun. And now? "Inception" is the 3rd best movie ever made? Are you kidding me? This was a very creative and interesting flick that went waaaayyy overboard. The problem with this genre (you know the genre -- was it a dream? or a dream about a dream? or a parallel universe where people dream they're dreaming about parallel universes while pretending to dream) is sooner or later you stop caring about the actual action because it's a dream. So the 20 minutes spent watching gunfights and car crashes in the pouring rain, and the 30 minutes spent watching these guys shoot up a ski fortress, and another 30 minutes watching what's-his-name float around a hotel just didn't do it for me. Not a terrible movie, but 3rd greatest movie ever? You must be dreaming.
Dom Cobb leads a highly skilled team, specializing in stealing secrets
from people's minds by entering their dreams. When they are hired by a
mysterious businessman, Cobb finally has a shot at redemption, but not
before achieving the near impossible. Rather than stealing an idea,
they must do the complete opposite: Inception. Planting the seed of an
Inception has a multi-layered plot, quite literally in fact. It focuses on the emotional journey of its lead character, Cobb, but at the same time thrusts the audience into multiple levels of action packed story- telling, very distinct from one another, but all finely connected. It has been described by critics as "a film that rewards intellect", and I can assure you that it is exactly that. Director Christopher Nolan challenges the audience to keep up, and rewards those who can with a breathtaking spectacle, one that has the capability to leave you awestruck. The best part about it is that while you may feel you need to watch it again to be able to fully absorb the experience, chances are, you will probably want to.
Christopher Nolan brings his unique vision to the screen with the help of a star-studded cast, including the likes of Leonardo Dicaprio (The Departed), Joseph Gordon-Levitt (500 Days Of Summer), Ellen Page (Juno), Marion Cotillard (Public Enemies), Cillian Murphy (Batman Begins), and Michael Caine (The Dark Knight), as well some amazing photography by long time collaborator Wally Pfister. The thrilling music in the film is provided by none other than Hans Zimmer, who was also set the mood for Nolan's previous film, The Dark Knight.
While it may seem simple at its outset, Inception is an extremely complex film, delving deep into the subconscious of the human mind. Technical brilliance and visual splendor have rarely blended together as beautifully. The emotional depth and explosive action complement each other perfectly, delivering a film that is at the same time both heart- wrenching and heart-pounding. It's a film that manages to engross you with its complexities, yet comes together seamlessly, and will have you at the edge of your seat, quite literally from start to finish.
Inception is magnificent.
I'm nearly at a loss for words. Just when you thought Christopher Nolan
couldn't follow up to "The Dark Knight", he does it again, delivering
another masterpiece, one with so much power and rich themes that has
been lost from the box office for several years. Questioning illusions
vs reality usually makes the film weird, but Nolan grips your attention
like an iron claw that you just can't help watching and wondering what
will happen next. That is a real powerful skill a director has. No
wonder Warner Bros. put their trust in him, he is THAT good of a
director, and over-hyping a Christopher Nolan film, no matter what the
film is about, is always an understatement instead of an overestimate
like MANY films before.
Not since the eras of Stanley Kubrick, Andrei Tarkovsky and Alfred Hitchcock has there been a more brilliant director than Christopher Nolan. He is, undoubtedly, one of THE most brilliant and gifted Hollywood filmmakers in history. Filmmakers like him come but just once in a lifetime. He has the ability to seduce our eyes, ears and most importantly, mind, and then delivers what he intends to deliver in full blast. Rarely have blockbusters have the gall to deliver such amounts imagination and intelligence at the same time. And yes, it is similar to the excellent anime film "Paprika" in the whole "invading dreams" plot, but the similarities end there as Nolan brings the film to a whole different level.
Visuals and intelligence rarely come together in movies at the same time, it's either all-visuals-no-smarts ("G.I. Joe", "Transformers") or the exact opposite ("Doubt", "Invictus"). In this film the excellently directed action sequences combined with immensely groundbreaking and jaw-dropping visual effects are combined smoothly with a heavy dose of intelligence and believability.
Although having an ensemble cast and financed by a Hollywood giant studio (Warner Bros), this film is a very personal film for Nolan, he wrote the film as well as directing it, and as you watch the film you get many glimpses of Nolan's perplexing, increasingly imaginative thoughts and dreams in the dialog that he writes and the plot that he sets up. Ideas have never felt more interesting and put to good use than in this film. This film is NOT for the popcorn muncher, rather it is a film for thinkers. Honestly I can't explain the plot for fear of spoiling the movie for you readers. Even the slightest hint will ruin the experience. The viewer will walk out of the cinema feeling dazed, confused and ultimately breathless. It's like a puzzle, both physically and mentally, and you have to pay attention throughout the film for the clues. However Nolan controls the spectacle of the film and is careful not to let it overwhelm the film's humanity, and this is where "Inception" shines. It is a very deep film that will have one thinking and asking questions for years to come. That's right, years.
Once the film ends, you'll want to watch it again, for there's something new every time. This is a film that requires multiple viewing for someone to truly comprehend the film's ambiguous themes, and will be discussed by many in the future. This is an original film, no adaptation, no sequel/prequel, no remake/reboot, which is extremely refreshing having gone nearly three years of mostly unremarkable visual effects roadshows ("Avatar" be damned).
Of course, a film is not complete without the actors. Leo DiCaprio delivers an Oscar worthy performance, similar but better than his previous effort "Shutter Island". He shows glimpses of a flawed, grim, fragile man, who has knowledge about everything else but yet can't seem to come in grips with himself and his demons. Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Ellen Page, Tom Hardy, Ken Watanabe, Dileep Rao, Cillian Murphy, Tom Berenger, Michael Caine, Marion Cottilard, Pete Postlethwaite, Lukas Haas... Nolan really brings out the best in this unusual yet extremely talented group of supporting actors who make their roles their own.
Nolan is of course, a master behind the camera, a real virtuoso when it comes to film. His direction is taut, focused, gripping, and extraordinarily fascinating. The detailed and complex original script is no surprise from Nolan, considering the fact that he turned Batman the superhero into pop-culture art two years ago ("The Dark Knight"). The action sequences are unique, exciting and fresh, something absent from the cinema which has since been interested at things popping towards the screen and stuff blowing up every two milliseconds. The visual effects are awesome and imaginative, and best of all they do not bring down the movie's quality one bit, rather it makes the movie more fascinating to watch. The cinematography is absolutely, beautifully shot, so we can see the action and emotion in all their glory. Production design is top notch, with terrific design of sets and locations. Hans Zimmer's complementing music score is simply outstanding, and knowing the man, that's really all I have to say. Together all of these elements combine to deliver a mesmerizing movie experience like no other this year.
Christopher Nolan has once again outdone himself. He truly is a gifted filmmaker, arguably the most imaginative in Hollywood today. And "Inception" can proudly stand alongside "Blade Runner" and "2001: A Space Odyssey" as science-fiction masterpieces that push the boundaries for movie making and become a different experience altogether.
There are two types of films: the crowd-pleasing blockbuster and the intelligent indie/art film. Nolan has combined two of these tropes together into one exceptionally brilliant package, pulling off that rare, now nearly-extinct Movie Magic that has since been wiped off the planet by sequelitis and reboots. Movie of Summer 2010? Movie of 2010? Heck this is possibly the first masterpiece of the decade! Nolan is a genius and I applaud him for treating his audiences as intelligent people.
Missing this film and not getting the film's point is a crime.
Overall value: 9/10 (Excellent)
Inception is truly one of a kind. A concept which has long gestated in
Christopher Nolan's mind, his eye for drama mixed with his large scale
sensibilities ring true in Blockbuster season making Inception a true
original in the sea of reboots, remakes and sequels.
To try and explain Inceptions many plot twists and incredibly intelligent arcs, would be a foolish task. As Nolan himself has been reluctant to. The best way to approach the film would be with an open mind, if you are prepared to be taken on a ride of a lifetime, then trust that you 100% will. If Avatar was a seminal film in technology (although coming out as a rather poor film, in my opinion), then Inception is seminal in it's storytelling. With a 148 minute running time, you would expect a lot to take place, but what you wouldn't expect is the pace of it all. I did not think at one time in the film about how long was left. I was simply blown away by the depth in every single part of the film. If my enthusiasm for the storytelling aspect of the film has left you worried about the spectacle, then don't worry. They are, as hinted in the trailer, incredible, looking real and unbelievable simultaneously. The most pleasing thing about the action set pieces, is that they are genuinely used to illustrate the story, rather than to blow stuff up a la Michael Bay.
With this complex movie in it's high concept, a stellar cast is needed. And Nolan as always, delivers with just that. This is vintage DiCaprio, perhaps only equalled in The Aviator, which is even more impressive as his role as Cobb in Inception is not a showy one, needing DiCaprio to be the constant at the centre of the film. And he pulls off Cobb's emotional contradictions sublimely. The rest of the cast members all shine in parts of the films, Cillian Murphy shows off his usually non-existent tender side, Gordon-Levitt bottles his usual charm for his confidently reserved turn as the reliable Arthur, Watanabe is devilish as the seemingly ambiguous Saito, Page shows why she's the next big female star and Tom Hardy revels in being the comic relief of the film compared to his recent turns as decidedly psychopathic characters.
Overall, Nolan has indeed surpassed himself. He has created a world as expansive as his Gotham, a plot dwarfing the intricacies of Memento and one which blows The Prestige's cinematic reveal out of the water. This is truly unmissable cinema. Revel in it, we've still got to wait a whole two years before Batman 3.
What do we ask for in a summer blockbuster? What is it that incites hysteria this time every year for whatever dross the studios churn out? Epic hugeness? Blowing stuff up? Romance? Action? Heroes? What are we looking for in a blockbuster? I think it all boils down to thrills! Audiences want the thrill of a car chase, the thrill of romance, the thrill of the spectacular! If that is the case, then Inception just might be the greatest summer blockbuster of all time as it also contains something we often don't look for...brains! "What is the most resilient parasite? An idea" says Leonardo Di Caprio's character Cobb. Well, Inception is all about ideas. It's all right there in the title. The film central idea revolves around "Extractors", who are paid to extract secrets from people's subconscious minds by sneaking into their dreams, usually for the purpose of corporate espionage. However, when one client asks them to plant an idea in the mind of their corporate rival, "Inception" is born. The less said about this film the better. It is full of ideas and invention and for each set piece I divulge, a piece of the film's genius is weakened. This is a film that cleverly and intricately brings the audience through several planes of existence simultaneously but never allows the viewer to feel lost. Such is the power of Christopher Nolan's script which, I imagine, is likely to get overlooked due to the sheer visual magnificence of his direction. But everything that makes this film so great is in the script...in the ideas! Everything else is just spectacle. This film bears an uncanny resemblance, thematically, with DiCaprio's other instant classic this year, Shutter Island. Both films investigate in depth the tricks a traumatised mind can play on the individual. Both films are luscious to watch and both films keep the audience firmly outside the realm of reality. However, Inception is an even more layered film than Shutter Island and I believe the sci-fi genre setting will prove to be less alienating for audiences than the prison noir of Scorsese's film. There is not a single dull moment in Nolan's film. There is style, charm and intelligence in every frame of the film. Every performance is pitch-perfect with some strong support by Ellen Page and Joseph Gordon-Levitt particularly who have grown up right before our eyes into undeniable movie stars. Leonardo DiCaprio gives a typically flawless performance as the muddled, grieving man who we never quite trust to be living in the real world. The best part of Inception is the large amount of effects which were done in camera. While the film does make use of CGI, there are some pretty mind-blowing practical effects which are as simple as the camera telling beautiful lies; a rare treat these days. This is a blockbuster that ticks all the boxes; smart, sexy (femme fatale, sexy brainy girl, very beautiful men in very beautiful suits) and magical. Inception is the kind of film that reminds me why cinema will never die. Because anyone who thinks it's OK to watch this film on a laptop or iPad is a fool! This is pure cinema, and proud of it. Not to be missed on the big screen!
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