31 December, 2010


After watching Inception I came out of the theatre with mixed feelings. I liked the movie a lot, but a number of factors made me think that this is not the masterpiece everyone is claiming it to be.

Let's start with a few points that probably made the movie one of the biggest hit of the year so far;

The secrecy of the story. The trailers gave away very little, only preparing the audience for a roller-coaster ride, which it delivered.

The story itself was well thought of, different, unique and kudos to Christopher Nolan for coming up with it.

I believe since Nolan came up with the story it was the icing on the cake that he himself went ahead directing it. The movie is executed very well.

The cast was perfect. Leonardo DeCaprio, Ellen Page, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Ken Watanabi along with so many others is a perfect mix.

The movie is visually brilliant. Cities folding and collapsing, never ending staircases and excellent car/people chases. The special effects are top-notch.

The Psych Element. Everyone is always fascinated by the human mind and how it functions. It’s something personal and a story based inside dreams and one that talks about the subconscious is very likely to interest people.

I liked the fact that it was not stylized. The movie could easily have been made with all the characters in designer suits and slow motion when they walk etc. But Nolan keeps it real focusing more on the story. Another example of this is the lack of the geeky comic character that seems to dominate every action movie these days. There is humor, but it is subtle and relevant.

The Ending. Similar to Memento it ends in such a way that the audience is left in awe. Was the whole movie a dream? Why did the totem not fall? This is where the brilliance of Nolan lies. He ends in such a way that people are ought to talk about the movie, leading to most probably repeated viewing. Remember Usual Suspects? What would have been an interesting thriller was turned into the most talked about movie thanks to the last 5 minutes of the movie.
Now, to point out a few points that I personally felt made the movie a little less effective;

Predictable. Maybe I have seen too many movies, but the end for me was so very predictable. The moment we are told about the totem and how Leo's character differentiates reality from dreams, it was a given that the movie would end the way it did.

The whole episode of Marion Cotillard's character (Leo's wife in the movie). Once the basics are explained, we know that the inner devils that Leo's character is facing are a result of his actions. When we find out about his relationship with his wife, we know why he is the way he is. We also have a good idea in advance that his experience with previous inception has something to do with his wife.

I also felt that some of the stars were not utilized to their full potential. It might be that having Leonardo DeCaprio in your movie demands that he gets maximum screen time, but it would have been nice to see more of Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Ken Watanabi, and specially Michael Caine.

The editing left a bit to be desired. Now, I’m no film maker, but some of the cuts were just too abrupt and not as smooth as they should have been.

Lastly, a lot of the camera work was too shaky for me. I'm sure it was done to put you in the spot, make you feel as uncomfortable as the characters, but it does take away from the film, specially when you already have a headache trying to figure out which level of the dream you are in.

So, when I think about the movie now, I definitely feel that it is an intelligent piece of cinema and the audience was hungry for it for quite some time. The movie works brilliantly on so many levels and keeps you interested throughout. I do feel that on certain levels it is the Minority Report of 2010. Yes the stories are totally different, but both the movies have a similar feel to them that is unique.

In a nutshell, I would definitely watch it again, but will wait for it to come out on DVD first. As for rating it, I would definitely give it a solid 4 out of 5.


  1. //this is not the masterpiece everyone is claiming it to be. //
    exactly... it doesn't require many number of repeated viewings though..

    and why no one talk about Tom Hardy when it comes to casting...?!!!

    1. We will just have to disagree on this because according to me it is quite awesome. As for not mentioning Tom Hardy, well, I didn't mention a number of other actors as well. The review is always just to give the reader an idea of my thoughts and mentioning all the cast isn't always my priority. Thanks