“Inception” Movie Review

     I write this review of Chris Nolan’s new thrill ride “Inception” completely overcome, intoxicated if you will, by a film I know is one of the best I’ve ever seen.  A bold statement for sure, but one which is clearly accurate.  It’s not often a film comes around where all of the important pieces fit together exactly the way the are supposed to.  To say anything but the highest of praise would be selling this great film and everyone involved in its production short.

     Normally, I spend a little time in these reviews giving a short spoiler free synopsis about the film as I move into my thoughts.  I’m not gonna do that here.  If you have seen the “Inception” trailer, than you have seen enough and you need not be armed with any thing more before you see this masterpiece.  Inception is a film which you will go experience for it is truly a ride and in the end, the film will sell itself to you.  In seeing Inception, you are in for one of the most original films to ever grace the big screen.

     In a summer full of remakes, sequels, and retreads, I was literally blown away by what Inception brings to the table.  In short, director Chris Nolan has to be mentioned now with the greatest writer/directors of all time.  You may recall his first feature film “Memento” which starred Guy Pierce and Cary Ann Moss.  In that film, also a great original work, Nolan tells the story of a man who suffers from short term memory loss and the entire story is told backwards with the ending coming first.  You can’t help but to wonder if Nolan looked at Memento as a sort of trial run for Inception, maybe waiting for the right technology to be available to complete his Inception vision

     Nolan, as we all know, is the man responsible for bringing the Batman franchise back from the dead with “Batman Begins” and “The Dark Knight.”  Certainly, a feat within itself, but here Nolan is starting from scratch with a film which reminds me of nothing.  It is the first and only painting of its kind.  Even James Cameron’s fantastic film “Avatar” owed certain story elements and visual elements to other films, some of which were his own.  Like Cameron, Nolan has created his own world and populated it with layer upon layer upon layer of characters, locations, and drama.

     Leo DiCaprio never seems to be in a bad movie and definitely has a knack for choosing the right roles and working with the right people.  No doubt, he will want to work with Nolan again.  As “Cobb”, DiCaprio maintains his cool throughout.  He is a guy who clearly knows what he is doing and will get the job done, even though he is fighting internal battles no one can comprehend.  The entire cast which includes Nolan regulars Ken Watanabe, Michael Caine, Cillian Murphy, and Ellen Page is excellent and with so much going on, each has plenty to do and say which gives them all time to shine.

     Hans Zimmers score is excellent.  I’m listening to the score as I write this and each song brings me right back to the film.  Its the type of score which really carries the film through each act and brings a rich, dramatic lift to every scene.  In a sequence where there are as many as five different dream layers occurring at the same time, the score really keeps them glued together and adds to the visual adrenaline rush.  I thought Avatar was robbed last year when the score didn’t win the Oscar, but I think I’ll be correct with this one, Inception and Hans Zimmer can find a place on the mantel now.

     So how does one judge a film against the best ever?  I know one way that works for me is the need and want of repeat viewing.  For sure, many will need to see Inception again just to get it all clear in their mind what they just saw.  I was able to stay extra focused throughout and I certainly want to see it again!  Of course there is also the question of wanting to see it again and again.  For me, that is the true test.  10 years from now will I have the urge to pull this off the shelf and watch it again?  I can say at this point there is no doubt.  When I sit down and retool my all time Top 25 films, you will see “Inception” high on the list.  In 6 months from now when Oscar noms come out, I expect nothing less than nods for Picture, Director, Actor, Editing, Original Screenplay, Score, plus all of the technical categories.  As more people see this film, it will become more appropriate to write more about the story, but for now I leave you with the highest grade I can bestow on a film. GRADE: A+