Here’s an idea…
Having earned them a colossal amount of money with The Dark Knight, Warner Bros rewarded Christopher Nolan with the finances to create an entirely original film.
Few filmmakers are treated with this much respect within the frugal, risk averse nature of contemporary Hollywood and in this respect Inception is a refreshing gamble for the opulent studio. Thankfully, the esteemed filmmaker takes this unique opportunity and provides a gloriously original piece of cinema.
Ever since his debut films Nolan has always been best known for complex pieces of cinema that marry the high-octane entertainment of a summer blockbuster with the mind-bending invention commonly seen in independent films. To date, Inception is the most significant film of Nolan’s career. Each of his previous efforts have built towards this moment and have a visible influence on it. Inception is a combination of the non-linearity of Memento, the intriguing drama of The Prestige and the glorious visuals of his Batman films.
Unsurprisingly, Inception is built on a confusing, but never confused, narrative. It was Nolan’s intention to encourage an initial reaction of bewilderment, before slowly revealing the explanation over the course of the film. This is the true genius of Nolan’s filmmaking style, in a sixteen year career he has never once assumed too much from his audience.
Throughout Inception, Nolan acknowledges every moment where his audience may be lost among the complexities of his multi-layered, reality-questioning narrative and provides a simple, embedded explanation. At one deliberately confusing moment, Ellen Page’s Ariadne captures the feeling of the audience and pauses to ask “wait, whose subconscious are we going through, exactly?”.
As well as conceptual creativity, Inception excels in every other department to provide an iconic cinema experience. With the studio’s support Nolan is able to assemble a cast of near insurmountable talent, breathtaking production design and a powerful, evocative score.
With a passion for the original celluloid format, vintage production techniques and storytelling originality Nolan continues to bring a renewed genius of cinema to popcorn audiences who are continually entertained by CGI robots. Inception is a masterpiece of modern cinema that gets better with each viewing.