MOVIE: **** (out of 5)
BLU-RAY EXPERIENCE: **** (out of 5)
BY KEVIN CARR
WHAT IT’S ABOUT
Dom Cobb is in a unique security business. His job is to sometimes protect and sometimes extract information from people’s minds. He gets access through their dreams, and he has a specialized team to help him do so. One day, he is contacted with an offer to implant an idea in a businessman’s rival’s head to give him an edge in the marketplace. This process of inception is incredibly difficult, but Cobb takes the job with the hope that his benefactor might pull the right strings to allow him to return to American and see his kids.
WHAT I LIKED
“Inception” is an extremely well made movie, and it represents a far greater follow-up to “The Dark Knight” than Christopher Nolan gave us with “Insomnia” to follow-up “Memento” and “The Prestige” to follow up “Batman Begins.”
“Inception” doesn’t necessarily present anything new for the experienced science fiction viewer, but what it does present is packaged so very, very well. From the powerful score to the impressive cinematography and effects, “Inception” is a train ride through Nolan’s dark mind. It is easily one of the best movies of 2010, which is reflected in both its critical rating and its box office.
I wasn’t as impressed with “Inception” in my theatrical viewing as I was on Blu-ray. Part of this was because I knew what to expect in terms of cliches and overused sci-fi plot devices. On Blu-ray, I could just enjoy the film for what it was… a pulp fiction piece with a slick veneer, and I love that kind of thing.
WHAT I DIDN’T LIKE
My biggest complaints with “Inception” come not from the film but rather from people’s reaction to it. The story is not that complex, and it’s not hard to follow at all. It just plain isn’t. Over the summer, it because chic to say you were confused by this movie, and I’m thinking that people are just easily distracted because it’s one of the more simple stories you will find.
It’s also not terribly original. From the 80s’ “Dreamscape” to the 90s’ “The Matrix” and “The Thirteenth Floor,” almost everything in this film has been done before. That doesn’t make the movie bad, but let’s put on the brakes for the Nolan worship, folks.
Finally, maybe it’s just my personal taste, but I thought Marion Cottilard was terrible in this movie. She may have been fantastic in “La Vie en Rose,” but she’s a bore here, and like Penelope Cruz, not that great of an actress when not performing in her native language.
While the “Inception” Blu-ray isn’t the best of the year, it has some great extras to it. I wouldn’t call it “jam packed,” but I would say that it’s got enough in it to warrant picking up in high definition if you like the film.
Warner Bros. usually includes a branching mode for the entire film. In the case of “Inception,” they give us “Extraction Mode” which includes embedded behind-the-scenes featurettes throughout the film. This disc also gives you access to “Project Somnacin: Confidential Files,” via BD-Live, which offer the secrets to the dream-share technology.
There’s also a second Blu-ray disc that includes the documentary “Dreams: Cinema of the Subconscious,” in which Joseph Gordon-Levitt talks with scientists about the nature of dreams. There’s also a motion comic book prologue called “Inception: The Cobol Job,” plus concept art, promo art, trailers and TV spots.
WHO’S GOING TO LIKE THIS MOVIE
Apparently almost everybody, if you believe the ratings and numbers.