Monday, July 26, 2010

Just watched...

..."Inception" written and directed by Christopher Nolan ("Memento," "Insomnia," "Batman Begins," "The Prestige," and "The Dark Knight").

With "Inception," we have a very rare occurrence in cinema: an intelligent action film. This is not to say that the film itself is about scholarly subjects or "high-falutin'" fancy topics. The structure of the film itself and the way it unfolds requires the VIEWER to be intelligent. And beyond that, the film requires a viewer who is alert and capable of recall and interpretation. Bless you, Christopher Nolan!

As someone who has been interested in dreams and dreaming my whole life (you may recall me mentioning in this post that I read Jung at sixteen), I was very excited to see an action film based on dreams. A team of elite specialists who can tap into people's dreams and manipulate the contents they find there are hired to plant the idea of dissolving a corporation into the subconscious of an heir to an energy empire. The mechanics of such a thing as controlled and shared lucid dreaming and how they learned to do it in the first place is presented as a fait-accompli in the film, but I really didn't care. I bought it and was along for the ride. With an absolutely fascinating story of dreams within dreams, layers and layers of consciousness and subconsciousness, and different rates of the passage of time along with spectacular special effects and marvelous action sequences that were never simply for the sake of an action sequence, this nearly two and a half hour film whizzed by for me and never hit a wrong note. I was particularly delighted to see how Nolan showed that external forces acting upon a dreamer can change the content of the dream; think of a time when you might have dreamt that a dog is biting your arm, for instance, and you wake to find that your arm is asleep because you have been laying on it! As one of the main characters in the film points out, dreaming is the only time where we are creating our reality while simultaneously perceiving it!

Recommend? YES, unequivocally.

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