Welcome to Simulated Reality Week: Day 5. This is the final day of Simulated Reality week. Next week, we’ll be covering some beloved coming-of-age films. Today, I will be reviewing one of the best films to ever come to theater, Inception. When it came to thinking about films that had simulated reality, other than Matrix, Inception was the first thing to come to mind, so I knew I had to eventually re-review it. One problem with that, though. I run the risk of destroying my original score of a perfect 100%. Thinking back to the film in retrospect, I worried about one of my subcategories – balance. That subcategory is all about if a movie makes sense or is too convoluted, and for a lot of people, Inception might be that convoluted film that just goes over their head for that reason. Now, I’ll get into it in a little bit, but Christopher Nolan did something spectacular when he made this film, he took that into consideration. Don’t believe me? Watch it again…or just read what I have to say after the plot.
Most of you have already seen the film at this point, so you know what it’s about, a group of men that have the ability to enter people’s dreams. They can go as far as three levels down, a dream within a dream within a dream, but you don’t want to go further than that. When this group is hired to pull off Inception, which is placing an idea deep in someone’s mind that changes their future actions in reality. There’s just one problem, it’s never been done before, and it’s really dangerous and risky to attempt, but hey, what the heck, right?
This is one of the best films I’ve ever seen, bar none. It’s a masterpiece in its own right. While watching, I kept thinking to myself, how has this film never had a sequel? I understand two things – it shouldn’t have a sequel and they’d screw it up no matter what. But at the same time, Hollywood loves money, so would you really be surprised to see this film had a sequel? No. Anyways, amazing movie. I have lots more to say in my original review HERE. But what I didn’t have in my review the first time around was how I break down the movies. So, here we go.
PEOPLE SCORE – 10/10
Acting – 2|Characters – 2|Casting – 2|Importance – 2|Chemistry – 2
For the record, Inception once again got a 100% rating from me, so every category and subcategory got perfect scores, and I’ll try to explain why. This film had an impressive cast right out of the box. Nearly everyone in the movie you recognize. Now, that can be a good or bad thing depending on the film, but in this case, it was a good thing. The main focus of the film was primarily on DiCaprio’s and Page’s character. That being said, everyone was vital to the success and completion of the mission, and they all had specific roles to play in order to find that success. Their diversity helped make everyone memorable, and by sheer miracle, they all worked really well together and had a really good sense of chemistry.
WRITING SCORE – 10/10
Dialogue – 2|Balanced – 2|Story – 2|Originality – 2|Interesting – 2
When it came to the writing of the thing, you know there was mastery going on. This film was all thanks to Christopher Nolan, who is a genius at writing films, he just is. Though all of his works typically stand out as greats, Inception may just be his crowning achievement. The dialogue was mostly memorable whenever they would explain dream concepts and rules. I was worried about the balance of the film before seeing it again, as it can be a difficult concept to swallow for folks. That being said, the entire reason for Ellen Page to be in this film is to ask the questions the audience is asking. You can’t really be confused, because Nolan knew when you would be, and placed a human FAQ machine slap dab in the middle of the movie to answer your questions. To me, it’s balanced because of that. The story doesn’t really have any grand messages to tell, but it does have an incredibly complex and almost magical tale of taking a journey through a dream, and what that means for outsiders, which by the way, is completely original and “interesting” just isn’t as big of a word as it should be for this flick.
BTS SCORE – 10/10
Visuals – 2|Directing – 2|Editing – 2|Advertisement – 2|Music – 2
As for things going on behind the scenes? Well, think about it. The movie is a masterpiece in every category I set for it. The visuals are one of the most obvious areas where this film did amazing in. The bending cities, twirly hallways, and crumbling infrastructures are just a small reason as to why that is. You need to actually watch the movie to see the rest. Nolan also directed the film, and bravo to him, because I’m not sure how I would even begin to approach directing it. A dream, within a dream, within a dream – all events happening concurrently and shot likewise – brilliant. The editing. Same thing. I mean, how will you realistically get that idea across? These are dreams, they are all happening at once, how do you edit that? I don’t know, but they did it. It is a film that is as-advertised, and it has a very memorable and powerful score.
NARRATIVE ARC SCORE – 10/10
Introduction – 2|Inciting Incident – 2|Obstacles – 2|Climax – 2|Falling Action – 2
As complicated as this film is, it still has a solid narrative arc. The introduction gives us a sample of a dream within a dream and a few dream vocabulary. The inciting incident is when the team is hired to provide inception to an unwilling person. The obstacles is mostly the three dreams concurrently happening and the steps the team has to take to make inception possible. The climax is explosively powerful, and the falling action is the returning to the new norm, which is still as gripping as the rest.
ENTERTAINMENT SCORE – 10/10
Rewatchability – 2|Fun – 2|Impulse/Buy – 2|Impusle/Talk – 2|Sucks Audience IN – 2
Is it entertaining? How can it not be? I would rewatch this hundreds of times and never get tired of it. It’s not only fun, it’s exhilarating and sucks you in from beginning to end. You have an impulse to talk about it, because it’s absolutely insane, and you would buy it in an instant after watching the film. It gets a perfect score in the entertainment department as well.
TOTAL SPECIAL – 50/50
Memory – 10|Dream Facts – 10|DiCaprio – 10|Insane – 10|Nolan – 10
Finally, the specialty questions that I wrote before seeing the film. Does it hold up from memory? Of course, it does. Are the dream facts and tidbits as awesome as I remember them being? Yes, actually. They did a lot of thinking and preparing for this film, given how they try to explain how dreams work. Why when you’re injured in your dream, you feel it as if it really happens, why the motion of falling jerks you awake, etc. They do really great things here. I know it missed DiCaprio week, but how is this film compared to his others? I would easily say this is probably his best film and even performance. Is it really insane, or is that just hype and nostalgia happening? I’ll let you decide for yourself after you watch it, but for me, absolutely. Also, what about Nolan and his work? Personally, I also believe this is Christopher Nolan’s crowning achievement that shines above everything else he’s ever done.