Christopher Nolan is a director who has received a lot of praise for his work. His mind-bending film Memento remains beloved and is still blowing minds. He is also responsible for the extremely popular The Dark Knight, an awful movie that was over-hyped (due in large part to Heath Ledger’s untimely death). The special effects were overdone and the plot seemed to go on forever and end up nowhere. I cannot deny that there were some amazing performances in that movie by its A-list cast, but even they could not manage to make the movie work. This summer Nolan released Inception, which also has an A-list cast, special effects, and a twisted plot, but in this case the combination paid off.
Inception, unlike most summer blockbusters, is an intellectually stimulating film yet it is still easy to follow. It grabs you from the beginning and keeps your attention all the way to the very end. It is a film that can appeal to all movie-goers, proof of which is that the two people I saw it with have very different film taste from mine and we all loved it.
Inception is part science fiction and part action. Leonardo DiCaprio plays Cobb, a talented and creative thief. He is a troubled man haunted by his late wife, and we learn more about him as his secrets and past slowly reveal themselves. DiCaprio’s performance is spectacular as usual, and he brings a real depth and complexity to his character which develops throughout the film.
Unlike regular thieves, Cobb does not steal objects but rather information from people’s minds. He has resorted to crime and cannot return home for reasons which are revealed later in the film. Desperate to see the faces of his children again, he takes a final job from a new client who promises just this. This time, however, he will not be stealing information from someone’s mind but rather planting information in it — inception.
To pull off this difficult task, Cobb assembles a team of the best. Arthur (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) is his right hand man; new team member Ariadne (Ellen Page) is the dream-world architect; and Eames (Tom Hardy) is the forger. As they go farther into their mental heist it becomes more dangerous, and we learn more about how Cobb is intricately linked to the mission.