I’m going to make this a zero-spoiler post – hopefully I can; if not, this is your warning.
in•cep•tion (ɪnˈsɛpʃɘn): noun The creation or beginning of something; the establishment.
Christopher Nolan has created many things over the course of his career. In Memento, he created a plot that ran in reverse. In Batman Begins, he re-created an entire canon by creating a world of fear and evil to be taken down by a man just as fearful but just as good. In The Dark Knight, he continued the trend by creating a darker and darker plot for an already dark universe.
And in Inception, he created a whole new world and a whole new concept – extracting knowledge and secrets from the unconscious by invading dreams, rather than merely analyzing them. And he does so with aplomb. Everything in Inception (starring Leo DiCaprio as Cobb, Joseph Gordon-Levitt (who I remember as a long-haired teenager alien on 3rd Rock – hasn’t he just grown up so fast?) as his wingman Arthur, Ellen Page as Ariadne, and Cillian Murphy as Robert Fischer) is so intricately described (save for one, which I’ll save for the analysis), yet in reality is simple (again, see the analysis). The cinematography of the dreams-within-dreams – including slow-motion to show the time increasing (Gordon-Levitt described that on the Late Show, that’s not a spoiler) was absolutely incredible. The creation of worlds – including the presence of paradoxes – and the resulting graphics are fantastic. The writing – which is both dramatic and comedic – kept me at the edge of my seat and laughing out of hilarity and giggling with intrigue.
Yes, there are some great scenes in and of themselves, like Arthur’s fight scene where gravity continues to shift. But the greatest thing is emotion, both with Fischer – who has always had problems with his father – and Cobb – who is trying to grieve over the loss of his wife (well, not exactly – see analysis).
You won’t need to “see it twice” like the commercials are telling you to, but you should see Inception – it’s a summer film with both brains and braun – and will leave you, if not creating new worlds yourself, or thinking about it, than at least shrugging your shoulders as you leave the theater.
If you want to see my analysis of the film, click the page up top that reads “‘Inception’ Analysis”. The password – if you really, really want to read it – is Charles Wayne.