We’ve been harping on about Inception for a while now, but there’s very good reason for that Discuss this article

We’ve been harping on about Inception for a while now, but there’s very good reason for that: Christopher Nolan’s new work has the potential to be the first truly great film in Dubai cinemas this year. Alas, we didn’t get to see a preview before going to print, but we’re still going to go out on a limb and say that this – a globe-spanning action-adventure sci-fi-heist-thriller – is the film to see this week. Make that this summer. Here’s why…

Expect scale. After pulling off an equal-parts-intelligent-and-thrilling actioner that also boasted big box-office receipts with The Dark Knight, Nolan has garnered enough studio faith (and cash) to make something utterly massive. The director has blown a cool US$200 million (the same as the budget for Titanic) to create the surreal visual landscape required of his story, wherein Leonardo DiCaprio is a spy for hire who steals ideas from dreams. There’ll be action set-pieces of Matrix-style physical-world-rule-bending proportions: the crew built giant rotating hallways and a massive tilting nightclub for chaotic dream-world sequences.

Expect to work. This visual feast is all well and good, but as is always the case with Nolan, this won’t be a ‘grey-matter-optional’ situation. Remember how much your head hurt after Memento? This likely won’t be any easier. Of course, you could just let the plot take a back seat and enjoy the spectacle, but we find this director’s films far more satisfying if you at least attempt to understand what on Earth he’s on about.

Expect powerhouse performances. What’s also rather brilliant about Nolan is that he understands how thoroughly his audience needs to care about the characters to really invest in the movie (see again Memento, The Dark Knight). Ahead of Inception’s release, critics are already lavishing gushing praise on Leonardo, whose character is the anchor for the journey. But DiCaprio isn’t the only premium performer on show: Nolan’s all-star ensemble cast includes Michael Caine, Marion Cotillard, Cillian Murphy, Ellen Page and Joseph Gordon-Levitt.

Expect a true original. Nolan has never been one to submit a lazy project, and Inception has been 10 years in the making from concept to product. While there are shades of previous works (Minority Report, The Matrix), when we first heard about Inception, what excited us most was that it’s an attempt to make something fresh, something quite unlike anything else. It’s not often we see that in remake/reimagining/adaptation-heavy cinema schedules nowadays.

The verdict. If you’re happy enough with the bilge fed into the projectors thus far in 2010, Inception isn’t for you. But if you’re looking for something smart, complex, moving and filled with enormous explosions, go see.

By Laura Chubb
Time Out Bahrain,


  • Duration: 142
  • Released: Thu, 15 Jul
  • Classification: PG15
  • Language: English
  • Website
  • Director: Christopher Nolan
  • Stars: Leonardo DiCaprio, Ken Watanabe, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Marion Cotillard, Ellen Page, Tom Hardy, Cillian Murphy, Tom Berenger, Michael Caine, Lukas Haas, Tohoru Masamune

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