Possibly the best action sci-fi I’ve ever seen. It is not as confusing as say Primer, not as mind-numbingly STUPID as Avatar but filled with great action.
I’ve seen a few headlines about the movies plot; how it might be ‘too smart’ for the average movie go-er. I think that is insulting to the average person, and I hope that movies like this will retrain the “industry” to continue to make “smart” movies instead of anticipating that the average person is a drooling slack-jawed yokel who is missing a tooth. The movie is not “too smart”, it is perfect. There is a lot of things you get to try and process, and the best part is the two days AFTER seeing the movie where you are still thinking about all the little details.
I didn’t see any commercials or reviews of this movie before hand, so I really didn’t know what it was about. I prefer this. RANT I feel that move movie trailers show way too much visual information. That is an important distinction to me. I can read the back of a book and get the outline of a plot, but nothing is spoiled. I can see an extended trailer for a movie, and what typically happens is you are given a voice over of the plot but then shown every major event in the movie. It is those small snippets that kill it. The best example of a ruined movie is the trailer for Surrogates. END RANT The movie is about mucking in someone elses mind to either extract or plant an idea, which makes this just as much of a heist film as a science fiction one. There is a team of people (The Spot Man, The Architect, The Chemist, The Forger and The Extractor), each person has their own sort of specialty. The one common task they all have is while in a shared dream state, one person has to be the host for the dream environment, and also be the anchor to bring everyone else back. This is where the movie gets complex, and very very interesting.
It reminds me of programming in two ways. The movie is basically a stack data structure. Last In, First Out. That might be hard from some people to follow, but all the move does is pop-off the stack in a very spectacular way. It also reminds me of a recursive function, but I’m not going to fully explain that.
Each dream environment, or Object, on the stack is ultimately in the mind of the “Anchor”, but the Architect designs the actual environments. By far the coolest character is not the main character Cobb (Leonardo DiCaprio), but the Point Man played by Joseph Gordon-Levitt. Every second his in on the screen, he is either doing or saying something that is completely awesome. The tumbling hallway sequence is astounding!
I don’t want to say anything else about the movie. I have really liked all of Christopher Nolan’s movies (The Following, Memento, Insomnia, Batman stuff), so it is no surprise I enjoyed this one as well. It still catches me off guard about how good it is.