Thursday, January 26, 2012

Inception (2010)


This post was originally published as part of the DVD of the Day series at Superfriends Universe on September 2, 2010.




Inception

Dreams feel real while we’re in them. It’s only when we wake up that we realize something was actually strange. 

The Stats

The Director:  Christopher Nolan
The Cast:  Leonardo Dicaprio, Ellen Page, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Tom Hardy, Ken Watanabe
The Release Date: 2010
The Runtime: 148 Minutes

The Plot

Cobb is a thief. What does he steal? Information. You see, Cobb has technology where he can go into your dreams and extract information from your brain and sell it to clients. This time, it’s different. Someone has paid him top dollar to go into someone’s dreams and PLANT information. What’s this called? Inception.

The Lowdown

It’s official. With 2010 rapidly coming to a close, I will declare it: Inception is the best film of 2010. There will be zero argument on this. I don’t care what Oscar bait rolls around in theatres the next couple of weeks… if this film isn’t nominated for an Oscar, than I call “bullshit.” This movie has everything.

Let’s start with the direction. We’ve all seen what Christopher Nolan can do. This cat has not made one bad movie yet. Look at the credentials: Memento, Insomnia, Batman Begins, The Dark Knight, The Prestige. That’s a hell of a resume. This film does not disappoint either. Nolan is capable of blending awesome story-telling, with really deep themes and roll it all into an entertaining movie. This film takes a sci-fi concept, makes it into an awesome “blockbuster,” packs some heavy philosophy into it and then leaves you hanging with an ending that makes you go “Wait a minute….” (Don’t worry, no spoilers.)

Then you have the cast. DiCaprio has come a long way from his Titanic days, where, let’s face it, he kind of sucked. He used to be just a pretty face with no skill. Then he got some seasoning with a bunch of Scorsese movies, and what do you know… now the dude can fucking ACT. If you don’t believe it, just watch The Departed and tell me that dude isn’t convincing. Throw in Joseph Gordon-Levitt, who believe it or not, plays a bit of a bad ass in this film, and Academy Award winner Marion Cotillard and you’ve already got a strong cast. But on top of all that you throw in some Batman alumni like Michael Caine (Alfred), Ken Watanabe (“R’as Al Ghul) and Cillian Murphy (Scarecrow) and you’ve got yourself a well-acted movie. The only real acting weak-link is Ellen Page, who I’ve discovered unless she’s playing Juno, she’s nothing really special. But, still, she by no means distracts from the film.

I mentioned this was a blockbuster, and man is it. It’s got some really sweet action sequences, and Nolan takes advantage of the fact that most of the movie takes place in dreams, which allows for some bending of reality. Which leads to the special effects. I’ve said before that CGI is overused in Hollywood. Sometimes they use CG when they could easily have built a set or a costume, and in the end things end up looking fake. Most filmmakers use CGI as a crutch (hello, Michael Bay.) But Nolan uses CGI as a TOOL, which is what it is. He uses it when there is literally no practical way to film something. And when an entire city folds in on itself… THAT’S the time to use CG. The special effects, if you haven’t guessed, are freaking amazing.

You heard it hear first, folks. Inception: Best Film of the Year. Buy it. Rent It. Don’t care. Just WATCH IT.