Monday, July 19, 2010

Inception - Summer Brilliance

When I went to see Inception on Sunday, I had high hopes. The summer movies haven't been really appealing outside of Toy Story 3. NO chance on Earth I'd go see Twilight and I was iffy on the A-Team. Last Airbender is probably going down as the worst reviewed movie to gross $100M so I was hoping Christopher Nolan would help Toy Story save the summer.

Plus I had to convince my crew to go see this. We were supposed to see it Friday but we had to postpone it. I told them there's NO way we are missing this movie so find some cash and make it happen. Happy to say we rolled up 10 deep to see it.

All I have to say is: WOW!!!!! Intense, complex, intelligent, layered, original, mindblowing! I left the theater stunned with a headache and a loss for words. Did a movie like that really make $60 million last weekend in this era of popcorn fare?

I won't spoil anything but I'll start with the fantastic acting. Leonardo DiCaprio is in a class of his own when it comes to greatness. Already made a great movie in Shutter Island earlier this year and now he did another fine job in this with his command.

Joseph Gordon-Levitt has come a long way from Angels in the Outfield and showed why he might be the most underrated actor of my era. In some scenes, he outshined Leo with his restraint. Ellen Page was a perfect newbie sidekick while Marion Cotillard was captivating (much better than she did in Public Enemies). Well-acted film but that's no surprise with 6 Oscar nominees or winners.

(That Murderer's Row doesn't even include Oscar nominees Tom Berenger and Ken Watanabe.)

The concept was original and well-executed. I'll just say that Freud would've been proud of how they looked at dreams and it had me thinking about what it could all mean. A metaphor for filmmaking? Either way you'll look at your dreams differently because it does well capturing the psyche that Freud discussed so well.

I heard somebody say it borrowed some concepts from the Matrix. If anything it added to the idea of an alternate universe.

It's a film that engages you the viewer and forces you to watch closely. It showed why Christopher Nolan (who allegedly thought of this movie at 16) might be the best director in Hollywood right now. He pretty much told peer M. Night Shyamalan, "This is how you make a smart, well-done thriller with twists and layers. Back to the drawing board, son!"

Just like "Dark Knight" - everything about the film tells something about the story. The background, visuals, relationships, atmosphere all relate to the plot and it's absolutely stunning filmmaking.

In short, GO. SEE. THIS. MOVIE. You don't see movies like this come out to critical acclaim and box office success. If it doesn't get any award love, something is wrong with the critics. It's like a good album, don't bootleg it - pay for it. Your mind will thank you! Virgo guarantee.


  1. Ellen Paige. yes please.

    true about leo he had shutter island. one of my fav films then scores another knockout with this. he keeps the hits coming. I concur its an intelligent film that makes you think.

  2. Sooner or later you'll enjoy it Mika. Cause I wanna pick your brain on it.

    @Jesus - Ellen Page is proof that wit is sexy. Don't care what anybody says.

  3. There were many moments during that film that just reduced me to a nervous laugh; the Penrose stairs manuever, the whole hallway scene, and the dreams within dream within dreams within dreams... It was almost too much to appreciate all at once. Easily one of my favorite movies of the now.

    It should also be noted how little CGI Nolan uses as opposed to other big-name directors. He's proving that we don't all have to be lazy, and that realism is more important than taking digital short cuts. When I found out the hallway scene was done without any computer effects, my mind was effectively blown.

  4. Good point Steven - I read in the LA Times about how many traditional shots he has in Inception vs. CGI. It's why he's a genius to me - combines the past and present to make movies that stick with you.