Review: Inception

Thanks for checking out our Inception Review

Genre: Mystery Thriller
Directed by: Christopher Nolan
Staring: Leonardo DiCaprio, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Ellan Page, Cillian Murphy, Ken Watanabe
Released: July 16th 2010

THE GENERAL IDEA

Dom Cobb is a skilled thief, the absolute best in the dangerous art of extraction, stealing valuable secrets from deep within the subconscious during the dream state, when the mind is at its most vulnerable. Cobb’s rare ability has made him a coveted player in this treacherous new world of corporate espionage, but it has also made him an international fugitive and cost him everything he has ever loved.

Now Cobb is being offered a chance at redemption. One last job could give him his life back but only if he can accomplish the impossible: inception. Instead of the perfect heist, Cobb and his team of specialists have to pull off the reverse: their task is not to steal an idea but to plant one. If they succeed, it could be the perfect crime.

THE GOOD

The Actors. Most importantly I want to address the less obvious. Of course DiCaprio and Gordon-Levitt hit it out of the park but dare I say I was more impressed with Ellen Page. This movie is VERY deep and we are introduced to this completely foreign concept by the introduction of the Rookie. As things are explained to her, they are explained to us. She is SO GOOD in this movie. Love her. Not a shred of her snarky emogirl persona is here.

Then we layer that with the core of the movie and Leo doesn’t do all the heavy lifting. The mix of Tom Hardy, Joseph Godeon-Levitt and Michael Caine (small but effective role) topped off with a less creepy Cillian Murphy all effortlessly carry this movie.

We expected from the trailers for the visuals to be tastey, but those were appetizers. Honestly there is a zero-gravity scene and it blew my mind. Incredible.

And then there is the plot. Its not just a story. This is a carefully crafted masterpeice of thematic elements woven together to make a story. Everyone has a purpose, and no one is throwaway. They all matter even though the story is all about Cobb. Its a hard balance to accomplish, and Nolan has never been afraid to get into story and he didn’t hold back here either. This movie is a masterpiece of storytelling.

THE BAD

There is a LOT of explaining going on. This is some serious character driven dialogue heavy storytelling. Its done well but there is a LOT to absorb. As I was leaving the theater there were people raving while others were dumbfounded. I imagine repeat viewings of this movie will reveal even more about the story that I missed because there is a LOT going on, and its all deep. (that might actually be a good part)

This may be too much for some viewers who thought this was just going to be a popcorn visual effects film. So while I had no problem with this depth its fair warning not to take the film lightly. You have to be awake and ready to take in the film, not just watch it.

OVERALL

Go into the theater execting a cerebral film that dishes heavy helpings of the human condition and you wont be disappointed. The visuals there make this heavy film that much more amazing to take in.

All I have to say is that I don’t mind that he put aside Batman 3 to take time to make this. I don’t know if Nolan will ever top this film. He just made his own shoes even bigger ones to fill.

I give Inception a 10 out of 10

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71 thoughts on “Review: Inception

  1. Inception is a great movie! It increased awareness about dream research. Inception is one of those movies that will make people think about the possibilities.
     
    Lucid dreaming is a powerful dream technique. Dream projections are referred to quite often in the movie. Good movie. Quality review. 
     
    http://www.DreamResearch.org

  2. I think that this film review of Inception hit the nail right on the head. The trailers were suspenseful, and I think they didn’t give the whole story away like other trailers do. I agree when you say that there was A LOT of explaining, but I feel like we haven’t seen a movie like this in a while (if at all) and it was refreshing; it made the entire film experience (ESPECIALLY in theaters) come together. It made the film more interactive because it made everyone in the audience (who wasn’t lost) get their own sense of what was going on. This element made for great conversation and reviews after the movie was seen. Bravo.

  3. People think because this movie has a lot of action and special effects and they might need to see it again because they didn’t understand all of it means that it was really deep and complex. Personally I think this was a poorly told story relying on a big SFX budget (Hollywood on autopilot). The premise that it really did matter if they got killed in the dream was such a plot band-aid and did not make me care what happened. Who cares, it’s just a dream!

    1. Yes, but it is real people within a dream. real lives are at stake, real minds are confused. that’s why people should care. i mean, it’s fiction of course, but if you’re going to like fiction, you should care about the characters of this movie and what they’re going through.

  4. This movie was absolutely the best! I would put it up there with Avatar if not better for a story! I thought that how detailed and how much explaining was going on made it better to follow and better to watch. Hans Zimmer also made the movie that better with his AWESOME music!

  5. Wow! guys i just went to see this movie with my 12 year old and for the first time ever he didnt get u to the bathroom or to refill hes drink or anythink like that, he and i was amazed by this movie the effects all around were awesome and the detailed storytelling was very appelling this movie was fantastic all around 20+ out of 10

  6. I just want to say that i saw this movie yesterday and it was outstanding….. everything about it was great…..I cant say ive ever seen a Dicaprio movie and not likeed it. He really should win many awards with this film.
    I hope what i am about to say doesnt ruin it for many but for those who have seen it will understand when i say – “it does drop” I think so because if you remember the kids alwyas had on the same outfit and at the end they did, and can anyone answer why the chinese guy was all old and Leo was still young? and why was the hotel room a mess while his wife was on the other side of the building?
    hmmmm still dont know definatly have to see it again, and im sure alot of people will.

    1. You think it DID fall over? because the kids cloths were the SAME? I believe it fell over as well, but because of something else – don’t want to say it because I don’t want to ruin it for somebody.

      BUT – It has to do with the kids at the end too. :) I am sure you can figure it out if you have seen the movie.

  7. Many people that I have talked to loved this movie. I personally didn’t like it. It seems like they were leaving it open for sequals that will probably be just as random as this movie was. As I watched the story try to unfold I was hoping to not have this end up as just a dream. I felt like the ending was a cop out. When we left the theater there were many people complaining about the end.

    Although I didn’t personally like the story line or lack of a story line, the acting was excellent and the action was non-stop.

  8. 10 out of 10? Wow, that’s awesome. Can’t remember exactly the last time I saw a movie get 10 out of 10 on this site. I think, was it Juno? I know John gave Return of the King a 10 out of 10 also.

    I already wanted to see this movie before hand, but reading your review has made feel like I have to see it now. The way it sounds, how it makes you think so much threw out and that you probably will have to watch it more then a few times to get it all, totally reminds me of the first Ghost in the Shell movie when I saw it for the first time. It to I had to watch more the once to understand all of it, because it was so deep and complex. I love Ghost in the Shell and it sounds like I will love this film as well. Planning to go see it on Tuesday.

    Can’t wait and thanks big time for the review Rodney. ;)

  9. Admittedly wasn’t as good as I expected. Whether that was due to the fact that, “Shutter Island” was by far the best movie I watched since “Man On Fire” and I sort of expected “Inception” to match it, if not better it. Overall was still a great movie but like someone else wrote it was a little to easy to read. Leonardo Di Caprio has moulded into 1 of the great actors of all time. The emotion and energy he excerts into becoming his character reminds me of Anthony Hopkins. Overall i give this movie a 7/10. Christopher Nolan has produced some great movies but I wouldn’t go as far as saying he up there with Scorsese and Spielberg, sorry Arijit
    :(

  10. What can you say other than Inception is a brilliant movie! Chris Nolan is one of the greatest directors of all time! He consistently out does himself. At first I was a bit skeptical when we went into the movie. I was sure Leo and Nolan could pull it out… Without seeing it you really think how is this going to work? It sounds a little strange. Then you see it and it really is a mind blowing movie. 10 out of 10 stars!

  11. I saw the movie last night and still can’t stop thinking about it. This movie was captivating, intriguing and brilliant. I feel you had to participate in this movie and not just view it. You didn’t dare leave to pee or get your drink refilled because you didn’t want to miss a second of it. The ending was equally brilliant making you wonder – did it or didn’t it! The audience groaned out loud when the movie ended because it’s up to each viewer to make that decision individually. When we got out to our car, many of the people were standing around talking about it trying to see what the others thought. It certainly makes you think and if you just want to go to a feel good movie then go see some Disney flick, cuz you aren’t going to like this. I’d like to see it again to see if I can pick up anything I missed the first time. LOVED IT!

  12. I guess after watching this movie People would include Christopher Nolan in the League of Martin Scorsesee, Spielberg & all other legendary movie maker who can pull audience just by there name.

    1. this movie is not boring at all, unless you are a toddler. in that case, you don’t know how to think, and without thinking this movie means nothing to you.

      1. I very much enjoy movies that make me think and wish this had been one of them, but the concepts were easy to follow and I expected the ending, hence my use of the word “boring.” I agree that this film is making people think. Why else would we all be talking about it? I wasn’t left with a big “hmmm” feeling about the story. I thought it was an OK movie at which I was bored at times, despite the fact that I was thinking. I do think that assuming that those who didn’t love it (as much as the hype said we should) have the intellect of a toddler is a bit presumptuous. Does this read as if written by a toddler? You must be acquainted with some very progressive toddlers.

      2. oooh. careful, that was a little insulting haha :) toddlers no how to think, they’re just not old enough to understand this movie. easy! lol :)

  13. A truly multidimensional movie, Inception, is the concept of planting an idea. The concept being planted to the audience of this sci-fi thriller is the concept, in itself, of planting a thought. A positive feedback loop that exponentially increases the power delivered through the theme: the multidimensionalty of our reality.

    This movie awakens us to the concept of multidimensionality, creation, and a human’s real power to wield it. The filmmakers were very responsible in introducing this revolutionary idea to the world’s unconsious by having Ellen Page play the best “rookie” ever as Leo teaches her, and us the ways, and the dire inherent dangers, of this new power.

    Inception has been the movie I dreamed about ever since I had first began dreaming, which is as early as I can remember. Coincidence?

    How do you know when you’re in a dream? Because you won’t remember what you were doing before you got ‘there’.

    Can you remember anything from before you entered this dream (life)?

    Wake Up.

  14. I think the flaws weigh a little more heavily than you did… it was a great movie, don’t get me wrong, but there was too much telling going on and the pacing just seemed off. I also felt as though there were two movies going on… before they ‘went in’ and after (that’s all I’ll say so I won’t spoil it). I’d say this would be as two movies than one. I’d still give it a 9 out of 10, though, for sheer risk taking than nothing else. We need more of THESE summer movies.

    The Dark Knight is still his best. He’ll never top it. Ever.

    BTW: Tom Hardy made the freaking movie. More of him, please.

    1. Yes. Tom Hardy really stood out in a field of too many characters. I would definitely see him in another movie. Also, totally agree with your assessment that the pacing seemed fractured. I never could quite get totally immersed. I am also surprised at how much Ebert liked this movie. He is usually down on the big, frenetic action sequences.

  15. “Inception” is, without question, the best movie of the year thus far. I walked out of the theater completely blown away. It is well acted, has a good pace and story, and the special effects are mind blowing. I would go so far as to say that it is better than “The Dark Knight”. I normally do not see movies in IMAX, but the scale of this film makes it worth the extra money. It is how Nolan intended the movie to be viewed and makes it that much better. DiCaprio continues to prove why he is the best actor working today as he continues his string of high-quality films. Joseph Gordon-Levitt is also slowly becoming a solid performer, as he turns in an Oscar worthy supporting performance. I think this movie warrants serious consideration for nominations for its performances, direction, writing, effects, and for Best Picture. Anyone who has not seen it should go as soon as possible.

  16. I think ll the Nay sayers should go out and film their own movie and see if it’s one percent of the depth and quality that inception is.

    1. Both of them?

      I wont ever say that a person HAS to love a movie just because I did. That would be ludicrous.

      I also don’t think you have to go out and make your own movie to be able to identify one that you don’t like.

    2. It’s completely absurd to suggest “naysayers” to go out and make their own movie, as if they had the time, skills or money to do so. You do a complete disservice to yourself to even make the suggestion. It shows you’ve wildly thrown your credibility out to window in order to make hyperbole as your form of criticism… against the critics.

      People are perfectly capable of deciding what movies they like or don’t like from watching them — knowing how to make good movies and knowing how to decide whether or not a movie is good to you require two vastly different sets of skills.

  17. I think it was heavily over rated. DID NOT CARE FOR IT. When it was over I was like “oh well…”

    TOO MUCH exposition
    NOT ENOUGH background with the side characters
    DIDN’T LIKE the main character
    LEFT ME COLD
    A MOVIE ABOUT A CONCEPT and not the characters

    1. I’ve got to agree with Assailant … this was not a great film. The characters were underdeveloped, many of the action scenes were overshot and the pacing limped along like a three-legged elephant. That said, the premise was great and the ending excellent. I’m still thinking about various scenes that foreshadowed the conclusion … or did they?

  18. The movie is simply exceptional!!!!

    Its a carefully crafted master piece presented in such a comprehensible manner. Count nt imagine how a human brain come up with such a brilliant story telling.

    ICEPTION: “You have to be awake and ready to take in the film, not just watch it”

    1. I have to agree with you. the movie was ingenius. many books are interconected like it, and the movies always struggle to explain everything. but Inception was totally orrigional, and it never got beyond my understanding, even if it was a film and not a book. excellent story!

  19. Inception triggers the senses. It brings you into this world, challenges you, and makes you think. It’s definitely the best movie I’ve seen in a long time, and definitely is a great movie experience. I gave it a 10/10.

  20. I don’t know why everyone is giving this film so much praise. I think the important part of your review is that there is a lot of explaining. The acting was good – especially jgl – but the explanation and diogu really is mostofthe film. The effects focused on in the teasers and posters only really last for about ten minutes. The subject matter and someof the ideas are really exciting but I don’t think the film lives up to the ideas it focuses on. There are lots of dream ideas never touched. I think Ellen page was chosen asthe rookie to make older viewers believe they should beagle to understand what’s going on in the various dream levels if a little girl can understand it. I really wanted to like this film but it was a disappointment. Marion cotillArd is great and the love story is one of the better focuses of the film. I say 6 out of ten at best.

    1. For a movie with only “10 minutes of special effects”, and mostly dialogue… you would think the film wouldn’t garner NEARLY as much praise as it’s getting.

      Personally, a story that can capture the audience member with just words is a true master piece because of how it captures the imagination.

  21. Friends, apart from the acting and filming, it is the plot that interested me most. It has a terrific story line, much better and perfected than MATRIX. Is there a blog where the story line is discussed threadbare? I like to join it and get some of my doubts about the movie solved.. :)

    1. I would also like some questions answered… I’m sorry, but I didn’t get all of it. Is there a site to go to discuss this movie? I am really intrigued. It was good… I wonder if I am overthinking it.

  22. This was the first time in ages i have had a collected experience in the cinema.

    As we were watching the final frames roll and then the screen went to black and everyone, and i mean EVERYONE, in the IMAX London groaned, then clapped and cheered almost instantly! (you’ll understand why when you see it…)

    Great film. Not a perfect film as my expectations of this were so high and i could see the influence of a lot of other films, but one of the best films i’ve seen in ages none the less. And a good review Rod!

  23. I really don’t get why everyone says this movie is complex…what it IS is well told, well shot, well paced, and brilliantly acted. There is no part of this movie that lets any other down in any way.

    Perfect popcorn movie for me. It’s weird to think that in 2010 Leonardo di Caprio really has become the benchmark for the “intense leading man” role in Hollywood… I mean, Inception, Shutter Island, The Departed….he’s building up quite the list of films there.

    1. I sincerely am not trolling or trying to get in a fight here. I just need to ask why you felt the urge to post the most arrogant / pretentious thing I’ve read in a long while.

      1. I posted because I’m not sure why people think it’s complex…each “level” is clearly marked out, and the plot is a staple of sci fi with the invasion and manipulation of dreams. The story itself is even played out in order with the exception of one short segment.

        I have seen other people say it’s complex and the closest I can come up with is that most of the people who don’t think it’s complex work with programming languages, and so get the idea of the dream within a dream within a dream because it’s similar to nested “if” statements.

        Not trying to be pretentious or arrogant…if I was then I’d probably be one of those guys digging up French arthouse movies and saying their chaotic nature better represented dreamstates or whatever :)

      1. i can understand why people think it’s complex – it’s a compliment to the movie! they’ve created an intricate story, and you have to follow it to understand. with careful attention, i did understand it. but then, i’m a science-ficion freak and i’m always reading a watching stuff like that. but Inception was both complex and meaningful – a rare, but wonderful combination.

    2. I do agree — I didn’t leave with a “huh? What’s going on?” feeling, and neither did any of my friends. My mother and aunt went to see it separately, however, and they were confused. So I do think it takes some exposure to these kinds of ideas if one is to get them, but not that much exposure.

      So, I feel as though the movie is deeper than, say, the rank and file Hollywood Blockbuster movie — but it’s not the kind of movie that most people will have to watch several times in order to “get.” You may get more complexities by watching it more than once, but I don’t think it’s going to be necessary.

  24. Incredible movie! “Masterpiece” is an understatement. I “hated” Page before seeing her in this role; she knocked it out of the park. GL and LD: brought their A-game, as usual. The rest of the supporting cast were also picture perfect. I don’t know if it’s Nolan’s choice of actors, or his ability to pull out incredible performances, but the entire ensemble just ‘clicked’. And the story!? I’m not going to give anything away, but each layer of the story kept drawing me deeper into the storyline. Do your brain a favor: GO SEE THIS MOVIE!

    1. I agree with you Royal, I also hated “Juno” or Page. But after seeing this movie, I thought she was one of the standouts of the movie, her and Joseph Gordon-Levitt. I hope Joseph becomes the Riddler.

  25. id say the only thing i didnt like about it was the ending…i was expecting some sort of mindfuck but then Nolan took that and went a step further.

  26. I hated Ellen Page for a while, mainly because I hated her in Juno with her pretentious pseudo intellectual teen “I’m over everyone dialogue”. But I liked her in Whip It and the trailer looked like she brought a great performance to this too. I’m stoked to see this.

  27. This movie is incredible! It pull you in and never let you go until the credit. Even after that you are still left sitting in theater chair pondering what you just saw. What a movie experience indeed. Every aspects in the movie are top notch. From the actors, camera, editing, scene, score, and most importantly… the story. This movie will stand up right there amongst the totem of sci-fi landmarks like 2001: Odyssey, Blade Runners, The Matrix, Ghost in the Shell. Two thumbs up and more for the visionary, Christopher Nolan.

  28. I have to say as a film maker when I saw this movie I didn’t know what to expect. But as the story progressed it made me realize more and more how so many people will not understand such a beautiful story. Let me just say one thing.

    The zero gravity scene blew my mind.

    I really don’t know how he could top that.

    And though I feel like I saw a little Shutter Island in Leo in this one he gave an A+ performance…

  29. Saw this last night and I want to see it again! It is really well done. Soundtrack was good Acting was really good Effects were good. I can’t say enough good things about this film. It lived up to the hype and expectations for me. I wouldn’t mind seeing it again in the theater.

  30. Good review and very good movie. I saw it this past Monday and I’m still thinking of it. It definitely has great replay value. I’d give it 9/10.

  31. I walked out of this movie calling it the girlfriend test.

    She doesn’t have to like it, just have a basic understanding of what’s going on.

    If she walks out and says she didn’t get it and that she’s looking forward to Vampires Suck, then that relationship might not work out.

  32. a perfect 10!! this is a first, every other movie site gave it perfect scores, not even the dark knight had as much full scores when people reviewed it. But where i live i gotta wait another week till this film comes out, but I’m getting impatient.

  33. i am drooling at seeing this movie. 10 out of 10, wow. would you rate this against dark knight as better or not as good, or are they two different beasts? i cant wait to see this.

    1. I vote better. Not a boring part to be had. It took the best elements of so many films and made one giant Voltron of a cinematic experience.

    2. I think they are different, but The Dark Knight is untoppable. I felt like I had been swept off my feet by a movie for the first time in a long time when I saw DK, but INCEPTION didn’t do that to me. I wanted it to, but it just didn’t

      1. The Dark Knight was amazing, but I’d say it was its own beast. Inception carries little to no true evil as The Dark Knight holds an obvious clash with the wonderful role of the Joker and whatnot. If you like movies that make you think along with visual greatness, Inception is your movie. The role of a darker feeling action packed good vs. evil movie was taken to new heights with The Dark Knight. Don’t pick one. Enjoy the separate genres.

      2. on the comparison of the Dark Knight (TDK) and Inception, i have to say, though both are incredible pieces of film, Inception edges TDK out on the details. Specifically, Inception, imho, has stronger performances throughout. Its impossible to top Ledger’s Joker and Aaron Eckhardt, Michael Caine and Morgan Freeman were all solid as usual. But i feel Bale and Gylenhaal (sp?) were flawed, particularly in the light of Ledger. Bale’s grunting Batman voice and unconvincingly sullen Bruce Wayne let me down. And i was totally relieved when Gylenhaal was killed so i didnt have to watch her smirk her way through pivotal moments.
        Inception’s main and supporting cast could not have given us more. Even the Mal character went from sweet to scary with no effort. No one with lines missed a mark. Not once. Just my opinion. Both have supreme plots, great action, complex characters, scenery, music, etc.
        Inception just “extracted” more from its players overall.

    3. Has anyone already noticed how much resemblance this movie has to the song “Silent Lucidity” by Queensryche? It’s as though they created the movie based on the song! Almost perfectly!

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