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Ok, I now watched it twice, and I read the huge plot synopsis at IMDB http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1375666/synopsis (thanks, nerds, that really helped! But who has the time to do that kind of thing…???)

Strangely enough, my impression now is that watching it for the first time with an open mind and a rather high level of alertness is sufficient, because second viewing makes you cramp up and look for details. While this film is stuffed to the brim with details, it is much more enjoyable when being seen as a big ocean of pictures and ideas – breaking it down to the molecule level would just not be the same thing. Looking at those details only reveals some plot holes or at least unsatisfactory arbitrainess in some elements. And it’s damned tiring to watch a two-and-a-half hour movie like you watch a bug under a magnifiying glass…

The highlights of the film for me:

Thomas Hardy!

The soundtrack, especially behind the falling scenes of the van off the bridge and in limbo, some strange sound backdrop as if there is a slow and powerful movement in the fabric of reality and of the dreams, stressing its material to the limit and threatening to burst.

Leonardo diCaprio, slowly but surely looking like a proper male human being

Limbo’s cold design, now crumbling after probably centuries of neglect, looking like a mixture of real-world early Brasilia, the nightmare cities of Terry Gilliam’s Brazil, Caprica before the invasion, A.I.’s future landscapes  and Potsdam Square in Berlin… grissly.

Some hell of a high-definition slow-motion camera that got installed in the van falling off a bridge in a heck of a rain scene

The rain makers of the movie have earned their money. I have never seen such beautiful rain, honestly!

Does that make a brilliant movie? A bit hard to say, but there were very few films in the last years that I wanted to see several times (and I think I am not done with this one yet after two times), so that may be an indication of being terribly interesting and fabulously beautiful in some scenes. There are also quite a few scenes that I could have done without: there are just two many minutes of people shooting at each other or chasing each other while shooting at each other. That brings the film slightly off-blance to me. Had Nolan dared to be a bit more Cronenberg-eXistenZ and less James Bond, this could have been a wicked arthouse masterpiece of Brazil qualities. As it is, it is a wildly original and mostly excellent-constructed blockbuster.

http://rogerebert.suntimes.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20100714/REVIEWS/100719997

http://www.filmspotting.net/reviews/2010-shows/564-fs-308-inception-the-apartment-top-5-dream-sequences.html

Inception 2010.

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4 Comments

  1. Inception is one of the best films I’ve seen in the cinema for a long time. I’d say Nolan masterfully mixed intelligence with popcorn entertainment and he’s one of very few directors who can do it successfully.

  2. @Dan: agreed, he currently is the best at walking this line. I think he needs an editor now and again telling him to get the action a bit tighter, though. I think cutting some of the action down by 20 min would have made for a better movie.

  3. “Had Nolan dared to be a bit more Cronenberg-eXistenZ and less James Bond, this could have been a wicked arthouse masterpiece of Brazil qualities. As it is, it is a wildly original and mostly excellent-constructed blockbuster.”

    Absolutely. I love eXistenZ (which I saw four times in theaters, often pretty much by myself) and I thought of it often when watching Inception.

    I reviewed eXistenZ here (click at the bottom for the parts with the spoilers):
    http://u-town.com/collins/?p=1238

    (Also, at some point I am going to write about Inception and Shutter Island, all the similarities and differences.)

  4. nice comment, thanks – I am now more keen than ever to going back to see eXistenZ again, it has been ages!


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