Since almost everyone seems to have decided Inception is the Citizen Kane of the 21st Century, I've decided to play devil's advocate.
[Author's note: This is a really good movie.]
[Editor's note: The author was at another Inception screening when he submitted this.]
Before the movie can even get started, it starts off on the wrong foot. One of the trailers is for Devil. When this glitzy, glamorous preview graced our corneas, the entire audience guffawed at the 2:09 mark.
We had been on board, we had been terrified, we were suspending disbelief. We were sure that there was no way it was just a Jenny O'Hara vehicle . But the truth of the matter was that the studio that brought you Inception assumed you like M. Night Shyamalan. That, ladies and gentlemen in marketing, was your first mistake. Just because I'm playing devil's advocate does not mean I will ever advocate a Devil screening.
Another preview was for Ben Affleck's The Town, what appears to be a combination of Heat, Gone Baby Gone and Lima syndrome. It also seems that Blake Lively plays a Boston hooker. No joke here, just a whole bunch of excitement.
But then there's the movie, too. Our protagonist is Cobb and our antagonist is his wife Mal. Yes, her name is "evil" in Latin: Nolan pulled the old "Vader" means "Father" trick on you. Even worse, this all just means Nolan wrote a movie re-imagining Celine Dion's "My Heart Will Go On" as if it was written from DiCaprio's perspective instead of Winslet's. Regardless, Mal is actually scarier than the entire Devil preview. And honestly, that makes perfect sense because the lady is a mind-zombie. She's dead the entire movie, but she lives in Cobb's dreams. I'll say it: Inception is just A Nightmare on Elm Street meets Night of the Living Dead with a dash of Heist. And it's a killing spree because all the action happens inside brains.
Don't even get me started on the totems. Cobb's totem, the item proves he is awake, is a tiny metal top. Only he can touch it because only he can know the weight of it. Ariadne, the youngest member of the team and Nolan's vehicle to explain the movie's direction, decides to craft her totem out of solid brass. She lathes this thing from scratch just to be like, "Oh, look what I made, Cobb. It's a bishop because I can think diagonally. I'll solve all of your problems because you're always in control like you're the King and thus you can only think about the next immediate move." And of course Cobb reaches out to touch her totem. As if this girl who got recruited for being smarter than everyone is going to listen to you tell her no one can touch her totem five minutes ago, turn her back, forget everything you just said and pass around her symbolic brass bishop like a second grader on Show-And-Tell Mondays.
The only people who can pull off constructing dreams within dreams decide to get so doped up that they can pull of a heist within a dream. Within a dream. Within another dream. But that heist goes so wrong that they go into another dream. Since no one could go deeper than two dreams before the Justice League of Sleep was formed, it only makes sense that they would be able to dive deep into four dreams with their powers and sleeping skills combined.
If they can use their minds to flip cities on top of cities, then why don't they just think themselves asleep? Sure, lots of it is for authenticity for the people they're tricking, but when Ariadne and Cobb slip into Cobb's subconscious, couldn't they have just dreamed themselves there? Because mainlining some more sleep juice in a dream obviously puts you into another dream. At the fourth level, sleep juice just seems like overkill.
By the way, Ariadne was recruited to make a maze that they just bypassed anyway. Way to hype her up for nothing. And when Arthur kisses her it feels like pedophilia.
Just because Esquire foreshadowed Nolan's meteoric career to public adulation as if their name was Scout and Nolan just broke his arm, it doesn't mean he's the best director alive. Besides, most of his nominations and awards are for Memento. He doesn't have a single award or even a nomination for Inception. So there.
Thus, you should not see Inception. It's just a movie and you life will go on—near, far, wherever you are—without it. Even though everyone is going to talk about how awesome it is and you won't be able to join the conversation. It's still poopy.