Just forget the words and sing along

Thursday, July 05, 2012

Fishing in the Discount Bin - Inception

It's time for Fishing in the Discount Bin, where I rant about one of the many DVDs in my collection!  I've been going though a stretch of movies related to Christmas 2010.  Here, we get to the last one I bought with my gift cards...one of the biggest movies of 2010, Inception.  My notes on this one are originally dated January 28, 2011.

And we finally conclude all the Christmas DVDs with the last one I purchased with the Christmas gift cards -- one of the biggest films of 2010, notable for being one of the few original films, Inception.  Kind of like with The A-Team, I never intended to get this one on DVD, but I had the gift cards, it was there, and I though, "Well, I"m sure lots of people expect me to buy this, so I guess I should."  So I did.

I think we've all seen it, and know the plot.  Leonardo diCaprio is Cobb, one of the world's best thieves specializing in extraction:  entering into your dreams and stealing information from your mind.  One day, he's contacted by a client who wants Cobb to do the opposite:  inception, entering into your dreams and planting an idea.  Since Cobb has some...legal problems haunting him, and this client offers a way to clear his record, Cobb reluctantly agrees, and puts his team together.  As we learn, though, Cobb has a lot of baggage with him, and when you're in a dream world, where reality is shaped by your thoughts, baggage can be a very dangerous thing.

As a lot of people have pointed out, this is a film that's very dense with exposition.  As I was watching it tonight, I kept an eye on the clock on my Blu-Ray player.  It's a 2.5h film, and the first hour does nothing but set up this universe, and the whole act of "shared dreaming" and how it works.  It is quite the thing.

And there's great characters, too.  Like the two members on Cobb's gang, Arthur and Eames.  I know they're supposed to be professional rivals and all that, but they bicker like an old married couple, which adds some levity.  And Ellen Page is adorable, as she is.  One of my favourite bits in the film, is when Arthur and Ariadne are sitting there in the hotel lobby, and all the projections are getting suspicious.

Arthur>>  Quick!  Kiss me!
(they kiss)
Ariadne>>  Did it work?
Arthur>>  Ehh, it was worth a shot. 

And the look she gives him! 

And the client, Saito, as played by Ken Watanabe.  "I bought the airline.  It seemed neater."  That line got a big laugh in the theatre. 

And now, the ending...something that film fans will be debating for years to come.  Was it a dream?  Was it real?  People are going to great lengths to find out.  I even read one tale of a fan getting in touch with the costume designer to find out if the kids are wearing the same clothes at the end of the film as they are in Cobb's dreams.  (Wardrobe guy:  yes they are.  Conclusion:  it's a dream.)  I know when I first saw it, a friend pointed out that Cobb always uses his wife's totem, and not his own, hence it's a dream.  Well, I just read one theory online that Cobb's real totem is his wedding ring...he wears it in real life, but not in his dreams.  Or something like that.  I kept a close eye on his ring throughout the film, but I didn't pick up on it.

I think there's only one way to find out for certain the meaning of that ending.  We've got to hire an extraction guy to enter into writer/director Christopher Nolan's dreams and steal the true meaning!  I think that's our sequel idea...or at least, a spoof segment at the next MTV Movie Awards. 

But yeah.  Despite the film being heralded, I found the whole "Is it a dream or not?" a little too reminscient of Total Recall.  The questioning of reality reminded me of The Matrix.  All in all, though, it's a fairly entertaining yarn. 

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