Friday, July 16, 2010

Inception (Movie Review)

Inception is the latest film from writer Director Chris Nolan, now well known for re-launching the Batman franchise with great success. The story features Leonardo DiCaprio as the leader of a team who infiltrates people’s dreams in order to secure their deepest secrets.

Comparisons have already been made to The Matrix, though viewers should not go to theaters expecting remotely the same experience. Inception is much more an action/sci-fi/drama than a straight up action/sci-fi flick.

The story is fascinating and only leaves you in the dark for the first 20 minutes or so. (Possibly just a little too long.) Performances are solid, though no one stands out. Still, the movie finds a way to make you care about even incidental characters.

Though DiCaprio is the lead, the story follows an ensemble cast of interesting characters, and by the end of the movie’s two and a half hour run-time, you feel as though you’ve experienced an epic story with a lot of things happening.

Those interested in concept driven sci-fi will find plenty to think about as the “rules” of the dream world are unraveled and depended on for the story’s progression and moments of tension. As unlikely as this story is, the framework provided for it gives it a sense of realism. But this is no brainy, sterile, cerebral sci-fi affair. There is plenty of intensity and action to keep the average viewer involved.

One scene in the movie has an antagonist (of sorts) ask DiCaprio what he is feeling as a way to determine what is real. It is interesting that the perceptive viewer can pick up from the script that “feeling” is not a determiner of what is real. The stronger theme is about dealing with reality, rather than allowing yourself to be ruled by your emotions. This theme isn’t dealt with in a way that provokes conversation, but it’s certainly there.

I should point out that although the trailers for this movie are filled with special effects shots, the movie itself has a much smaller percentage of them. The realistic feel of the film may actually be a letdown to geeks looking for a more mind-bending movie. But this is a great film that many will enjoy, including the geek.

Rated PG-13 for sequences of violence and action throughout.

Quality: 9.0/10

Relevance: 7.0/10

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