Chicago Sun-Times – What the heck is ‘Inception’ about anyway?

by InceptionEnding

in Inception Ending

1. The most straightforward interpretation: Saito hires Cobb and his team to plant an idea in Fischer’s mind. They succeed, and Cobb is rewarded with a trip home, where he is finally reunited with his children. He will never see his wife in his dreams again. The last scene is reality.

2. At the end of the movie, Cobb is still inside a dream. That’s why the children are the same age as they’ve been throughout the film, playing in the same position and wearing the same clothes. (Ah, but the credits list actors who play Phillipa and James at 3 years and 20 months, respectively — and other actors that play them at ages 5 and 3.)

3. The whole movie is a dream, most likely Cobb’s dream. Nothing that happens in the movie is reality. It’s dream upon dream upon dream. (In one sequence, Mal says to her husband, “How real is your world, with faceless corporate goons chasing you all over the planet?”)

4. Some of the real-world scenes are actually dream scenes, and some of the dream scenes are actually real-world scenes. In this scenario, Cobb’s friend Arthur has actually engineered the entire plan, in an effort to finally free Cobb from his wife. And if that’s the case, my head is about to explode.

5. To go back to the moviemaking metaphor, “Inception” is first and foremost Christopher Nolan’s symphony about the art of making movies. As Devin Faraci of chud.com outlines it, each character in the film represents a key player in the moviemaking process. Cobb is the director. Arthur, who does the research, is the producer. Ariadne, the architect, is the screenwriter. Eames is the actor. Yusuf is the technical expert. Saito is the studio chief. Fischer is the audience.

It doesn’t matter if the ending is a dream or not; Nolan’s primary goal is to take us on a journey about the process of filmmaking.

6. By cutting away as the totem is still spinning, Nolan is creating an inception of his own — planting the seed of an idea in our minds that perhaps Cobb was still dreaming, perhaps he KNEW he was still dreaming and he has embraced that — or he truly has returned to his real life….”

http://www.suntimes.com/news/roeper/2522824,CST-NWS-roep22.article

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