It’s not very often these days that a new, completely original property comes along and is not only a massive hit, but also really great too. So leave it to auteur Christopher Nolan to come along with an inventive new film like this in between making Batman movies. ‘Inception‘ is a real marvel of a modern blockbuster.
Leonardo DiCaprio plays Cobb, a thief who steals secrets from people by getting into their dreams. He gets offered the chance to have his criminal record wiped clear if he completes one task: an inception. This means going into Cillian Murphy’s head in order to plant an idea about dissolving his father’s company. Cobb recruits a team and they begin plotting this near impossible undertaking. It’s a very complex film with many layers. That is layers of storytelling and also layers of dreams. There’s dreams within dreams within dreams. It may be a little confusing on first viewing if you’re not paying attention, but trust me, you’re going to watch this more than once anyway!
And if the amazingly interesting story wasn’t enough to get you hooked, the great performances of the all-star cast should do. Leo is as good as ever as the troubled hero Cobb. He’s smart and capable but also hiding some dark secrets of his own. Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Ellen Page, Tom Hardy, Ken Watanabe, Dileep Rao, Cillian Murphy, Michael Caine and Marion Cotillard round out the impressive ensemble cast and all deliver first rate performances. Every character in the team has their own skill and gets their own moments to shine and the amazing acting just immerses you in the story even more.
So there’s a good cast and a good story, you say. What about everything else? Well, aside from the great score by the usually great Hans Zimmer, there’s also some real mind-bending special effects. Ever wondered what a city folding in on itself would look like? What about a fruit stall exploding into tinier and tinier pieces in mid-air? Or an entire derelict city crumbling away into dust? Well wonder no more! It all happens here and it all looks fantastic. For a film that is about more than just special effects, it makes real great use of some brilliant looking stuff. There’s some awesome looking action too! There’s an assault on a compound in some snowy mountains, an extended car chase and one of the highlights of the film: a fight in a corridor that is rotating in near zero gravity. It is a real marvel and the fact that the corridor was actually built and rotated on a rig in order to film it is all the more impressive. It just makes it look even greater.
Huge credit has to go to writer and director Nolan, who is very great at crafting these multi-layered stories with some great characters and some interesting plot threads. And this really is a great film. It’s interesting enough to warrant multiple viewings and fun enough to enjoy each time. It is a great original, modern blockbuster and cements Nolan as one of the great directors of our time.
JACK’S SCORE: 5/5