inception thread (will absolutely contain spoiler)

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inception thread (will absolutely contain spoiler)

Postby molly1216 » Tue Jan 18, 2011 1:10 pm

am i the only one who saw the end of the movie coming from about 2 reels in?

Dicaprio is sitting in the hotel room and his phone rings, he picks it up and it happens to be his kids. that's just it. he's doing something secret at the ass end of the world - he's in a hotel room and the phone rings...not a cell in his pocket but the hotel phone. that was when i just figured no matter what happened i was already being played.
i don't want to knock what is an obviously beloved film...it's a great film i grant you but that just bugs the crap out of me.

IMHO films like Inception, and Identity and any others that take place completely inside a character's head have an inherent dishonesty about them. I would have almost lumped Usual Suspects into that pile, but it doesn't HAVE the ringing phone, ya dig? you walk out wondering IF you just spent 2 hours inside of someone's head or not. With Inception I absolutely knew i had, so i just don't care, inside of someone's head..only Matrix rules apply...anything goes and physics don't matter and the halves don't have to meet in the middle.
"Isn't it enough to see that a garden is beautiful without having to believe that there are fairies at the bottom of it too?" - Douglas Adams
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Re: inception thread (will absolutely contain spoiler)

Postby mkiker2089 » Tue Jan 18, 2011 2:27 pm

I need to watch it again to be sure. A friend said only 3 people were real, but had no solid explanation of why only 3. You are saying it's all in his head, so no one is real. I thought only parts of it were in his head so it pretty much was all real except the beg and end.
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Re: inception thread (will absolutely contain spoiler)

Postby Dan Mancini » Tue Jan 18, 2011 2:49 pm

Having watched the flick a number of times now, I can assure you there's plenty throughout the movie to indicate that not all of it is a dream. And I say that as someone who thought the whole thing was a dream after seeing it in the theater. It's certainly designed to make you second guess what is real and what is a dream, but the more you take things at face value, the more the movie makes sense. The main problem with the "it's all a dream" interpretation is that it makes the final cut away from the spinning top the gimmick towards which the entire movie has been building. But what the movie actually builds towards is the catharsis of Dom going to his children (who have aged since the last time he saw them, by the way) instead of waiting to see whether or not the top stops spinning.

Also, I got the sense that Dom was living in that hotel, not just staying there. It's his base of operations. He's not a man on the run, just a man who can't return home. I didn't find it odd at all that his family had his number.
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Re: inception thread (will absolutely contain spoiler)

Postby molly1216 » Tue Jan 18, 2011 5:12 pm

so who's real?

re: the phone..the more i think about it, the more i think the phone is a gimmick. even if he was living there, his kids would call his cell. not a landline. that's just not the norm anymore.
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Re: inception thread (will absolutely contain spoiler)

Postby mkiker2089 » Tue Jan 18, 2011 5:16 pm

I take it pretty much at face value. The beginning is a dream, same dream as the end. Up until the airplane trip everything in between is real, except the separate dreams in there of course. In that sense I take it that everyone is real. That's why I think my friend was full of crap trying to say some weren't real.

The end result to me is the same as Dan said. If the object acted real, then the world is real. They set pretty much only one real rule and followed it. Someone could break it down more and test each scene however. I have the BR sitting next to me so I'll have to see how a second watching plays out.
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Re: inception thread (will absolutely contain spoiler)

Postby Dan Mancini » Wed Jan 19, 2011 4:28 am

Every major character is real, except Mal.
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Re: inception thread (will absolutely contain spoiler)

Postby Steve T Power » Wed Jan 19, 2011 7:52 am

I think a lot of the confusion with Inception is people reading too deeply into it's intentions. It's an amazing piece of work, but you need to take the narrative at face value. The spinning top at the end? Sheer gimmick. Nolan having one last "ha ha ha" with the audience before the credits roll and the house lights come up. It isn't Blade Runner.

With regards to the phone issue, Nolan kind of creates rules for the world in which his films take place, for example, Batman Begins was set in a world in which Super Heroes do not exist (hence the excising of "The Mark of Zorro"). It's not too far out to think that the alternate reality in which Inception unfolds isn't quite as "up" on wireless communication as our everyday society. You don't see characters whipping out blackberrys or iPhones.

Which leads me to another idea: How will gadgets like the iPhone and Droid phones change the rules of movies? Hollywood hasn't really latched onto this tech the way society has, even TV shows haven't really embraced the idea that these devices have really altered society on a fundamental level - we're all walking around with GPS, instant messaging, and a nigh limitless database of searchable information in our pockets, and yet TV and movie cops still do their legwork the old fashioned way. Outside of local boy, Republic of Doyle, which uses the iPhone as a detective tool rather frequently, it seems like writers may be out of touch with the tech, and thus don't even really know HOW to implement it in a convincing fashion.
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Re: inception thread (will absolutely contain spoiler)

Postby Kevin » Wed Jan 19, 2011 8:03 am

Deckard was human!
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Re: inception thread (will absolutely contain spoiler)

Postby mkiker2089 » Wed Jan 19, 2011 8:42 am

Sort of piggybacking on what Steve said, I got the feeling that the movie was set in a strange world that is partly modern and partly mid 50s. The style of the phones, the clothes they wear, the architecture and decor all speak heavily of the 50's to me.

I agree with Dan that everyone was real. I've googled for other interpretations and nothing makes sense to me except what we've said, take it as everything is real unless it's specifically stated to be a dream.

Steve, are you saying the end is real, with the kids and spinning top? I'm not sold on that either way but I seem to recall that it was a dream he was trapped in alone. I still haven't watched the Blu Ray to get second opinions on though.
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Re: inception thread (will absolutely contain spoiler)

Postby Steve T Power » Wed Jan 19, 2011 9:50 am

Kevin wrote:Deckard was human!


If you're an idiot or Frank Darabont... who may also be an idiot. But that is for another thread. We haven't discussed Blade Runner in a while...

mrkicks wrote: Steve, are you saying the end is real, with the kids and spinning top? I'm not sold on that either way but I seem to recall that it was a dream he was trapped in alone. I still haven't watched the Blu Ray to get second opinions on though.


The thing is, as high concept as the ideas are in Inception the narrative is actually incredibly base and straight forward. Sure, people have interpreted things a certain way, but in truth, there's really not much left open for interpretation. The spinning top is spinning, it starts to wobble, and just as it WOULD topple, we cut to credits. Just a little tease from Nolan. A little *wink wink, nudge nudge* for us to chew on as we walk out of the theatre. Does it mean anything? In the confines of the film's narrative, i don't think so. Beyond that? I think Nolan is challenging perception. What we see is real, but in the end, what defines our idea of reality? Is this real, right now? It's Nolan being a fancy lad. Maybe creating controversy or debate where none exists.

Us artsy types being who we are, all hate happy endings, maybe making us think it was all a dream was Nolan's way of feeding us a bitter pill so that our cynical arses would be more happy with the flick. That's just me being a jerk. ;)
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Re: inception thread (will absolutely contain spoiler)

Postby mkiker2089 » Wed Jan 19, 2011 11:20 am

Perhaps it's like the different interpretations of Shutter Island. Some people wanted the ending to mean something different. They almost fool themselves into seeing it different but to me they pretty much tied things up. Being objective as possible and paying attention to the dialouge I think the ending pretty much said what it meant.

However we disagree on Blade Runner. If Ridley Scott wanted Deckard to be a replicant he needed to actually allude to it. Picking up an origami of something he happened to see in a dream doesn't count. How did that guy know his dreams? Why was he the only allowed replicant on Earth? How do we know it wasn't a coincedence? I've had dreams about crazy spider monkeys hiding all my dishes in the mailbox. Does that make me some sort of android? I hope not.

edit-

perhaps we do need a blade runner thread
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Re: inception thread (will absolutely contain spoiler)

Postby Steve T Power » Wed Jan 19, 2011 1:37 pm

mkiker2089 wrote:Perhaps it's like the different interpretations of Shutter Island. Some people wanted the ending to mean something different. They almost fool themselves into seeing it different but to me they pretty much tied things up. Being objective as possible and paying attention to the dialouge I think the ending pretty much said what it meant.

However we disagree on Blade Runner. If Ridley Scott wanted Deckard to be a replicant he needed to actually allude to it. Picking up an origami of something he happened to see in a dream doesn't count. How did that guy know his dreams? Why was he the only allowed replicant on Earth? How do we know it wasn't a coincedence? I've had dreams about crazy spider monkeys hiding all my dishes in the mailbox. Does that make me some sort of android? I hope not.

edit-

perhaps we do need a blade runner thread


There's a LOT more in there than the unicorn, and almost from Deckard's first appearance. It was premeditated. Others didn't like the idea (Ford) but that didn't stop Ridley.
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Re: inception thread (will absolutely contain spoiler)

Postby mkiker2089 » Wed Jan 19, 2011 3:19 pm

Just read where Micheal Caine says that the end is real because he was never in the dream. I also read where Nolan says that it's not important because of <insert artsy fartsy double speak here.>

To me it makes the most sense as a straight narrative. The movie opened with a dream, ended with the same dream waking, and is now in reality.

I don't get why people (director's) like the cop out endings. It just feels cheap. Kind of like the end of X-Men 3 where Magneto may have recovered his powers. Either do it or don't. Nolan is one step away from "I see dead people."

Steve, some people have said that Scott added the Replicant stuff later because he always intended it to be so, but realized that it didn't translate into the final film. He added the unicorn scene later and did some edits that I can't recall to add the ambiguity. Perhaps that's why to so many (me included) it never really registers. Of course I have no real knowledge beyond what people say on the net and what little we gleam from commentary tracks.
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Re: inception thread (will absolutely contain spoiler)

Postby Dan Mancini » Wed Jan 19, 2011 3:32 pm

mkiker2089 wrote:Just read where Micheal Caine says that the end is real because he was never in the dream. I also read where Nolan says that it's not important because of <insert artsy fartsy double speak here.>

To me it makes the most sense as a straight narrative. The movie opened with a dream, ended with the same dream waking, and is now in reality.

I don't get why people (director's) like the cop out endings. It just feels cheap. Kind of like the end of X-Men 3 where Magneto may have recovered his powers. Either do it or don't. Nolan is one step away from "I see dead people."

Nolan is many, many, many steps away from "I see dead people." M. Night Shama-lama trades in gimmicks; Nolan trades in honest-to-goodness ambiguity. There's a huge difference between the two. Nolan's "artsy fartsy double speak" isn't double-speak. Catharsis is a major theme of the movie. The ending is about Dom's catharsis, not whether or not that catharsis is happening in a dream or in waking life. Obsessing over whether or not the top stops spinning is missing the point. There is no twist in Inception's ending. None. If the top stops spinning, that reveals exactly nothing of importance. If the top continues spinning, that reveals exactly nothing of importance.
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Re: inception thread (will absolutely contain spoiler)

Postby Steve T Power » Wed Jan 19, 2011 3:54 pm

mkiker2089 wrote:
Steve, some people have said that Scott added the Replicant stuff later because he always intended it to be so, but realized that it didn't translate into the final film. He added the unicorn scene later and did some edits that I can't recall to add the ambiguity. Perhaps that's why to so many (me included) it never really registers. Of course I have no real knowledge beyond what people say on the net and what little we gleam from commentary tracks.


Negative. Unicorn stuff was filmed. Rid's implications from the word go were that Deckard was the thing that he hunts. Without that, the whole damn movie falls apart. The original theatrical cut was something he was not directly responsible for.
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Re: inception thread (will absolutely contain spoiler)

Postby Dimwitted » Wed Jan 19, 2011 5:27 pm

Dan Mancini wrote:Nolan is many, many, many steps away from "I see dead people." M. Night Shama-lama trades in gimmicks; Nolan trades in honest-to-goodness ambiguity. There's a huge difference between the two. Nolan's "artsy fartsy double speak" isn't double-speak. Catharsis is a major theme of the movie. The ending is about Dom's catharsis, not whether or not that catharsis is happening in a dream or in waking life. Obsessing over whether or not the top stops spinning is missing the point. There is no twist in Inception's ending. None. If the top stops spinning, that reveals exactly nothing of importance. If the top continues spinning, that reveals exactly nothing of importance.


Nolan has said and it's the important point of it all. Dom turns away. That's it. It doesn't matter whether the top falls or not because to Dom it doesn't matter any more. He got his reward. And when it's all said and done, figure out how old they all are. Dom has to be somewhere in his 100's. 120? Maybe. He's getting little tired I would think.
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Re: inception thread (will absolutely contain spoiler)

Postby Gabriel Girard » Wed Jan 19, 2011 7:39 pm

Steve T Power wrote:Negative. Unicorn stuff was filmed. Rid's implications from the word go were that Deckard was the thing that he hunts. Without that, the whole damn movie falls apart. The original theatrical cut was something he was not directly responsible for.


I really don't think the movie fails if Deckard is human, I like the ambiguity of it. It's the question that's interesting not the answer.And I agree with Dancini about Inception.
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Re: inception thread (will absolutely contain spoiler)

Postby mkiker2089 » Wed Jan 19, 2011 8:45 pm

Dan Mancini wrote:Nolan is many, many, many steps away from "I see dead people." M. Night Shama-lama trades in gimmicks; Nolan trades in honest-to-goodness ambiguity. There's a huge difference between the two. Nolan's "artsy fartsy double speak" isn't double-speak. Catharsis is a major theme of the movie. The ending is about Dom's catharsis, not whether or not that catharsis is happening in a dream or in waking life. Obsessing over whether or not the top stops spinning is missing the point. There is no twist in Inception's ending. None. If the top stops spinning, that reveals exactly nothing of importance. If the top continues spinning, that reveals exactly nothing of importance.


On that I guess we'll have to disagree. I get his point about wanting to give the character a fit ending but I disagree about the importance of the top. How can you have true catharsis stuck within a dream world. Especially given what we know of the dream world and it's proclivity to go wrong. If the top keeps spinning then Dom is for all practical terms a vegetable. If the top stops spinning then Dom has the catharsis that Nolan speaks of. I just don't agree that he can live happily ever after stuck in a dream world while his body lies limp on an airplane.

That also begs to question what happens to that catharsis if it is a dream, and he wakes up? Will he too kill himself from the shock of it?

Perhaps I'm just over analyzing it though.
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Re: inception thread (will absolutely contain spoiler)

Postby Steve T Power » Thu Jan 20, 2011 5:09 am

Over analyzing? Nah. I think you're thoughts on that regard have some merit. Like I said above, and Dan elaborated on, I think it's ultimately inconsequential. That said, I like your idea on catharsis within the dream world and Dom essentially being a vegetable, I hadn't really looked at it that way.
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