SunTimes – Encounters at the End of the Mind

by InceptionEnding

in Inception Ending

“…Beyond our short moments of manipulated happiness for the characters – wondering if the seemingly happy ending is indeed happy – Nolan himself does not explicitly answer the question, except to assert that the culprits’ internal compasses will eventually challenge the their choices. If we exploit someone else, either for noble or selfish pursuits, that same memory that fueled us with hope will eventually haunt us with lonely regret. Further, the thief himself might soon forget that the rest of us rely on a seemingly concrete reality, while he himself lives in the clouded, stormy existentialist moment. It is not only failure that results in a life of regret, but even some success.

Ultimately, Nolan does make a comment on the nature of reality, dreams, memory and consciousness. He illustrates that – waking or dreaming – ours is an imagined world of meanings and yearnings. We give meaning to the locations of our lives. We give meaning to little tokens in our lives, turning them into totems. We give meaning to the relationships in our lives. That Yuji Okumoto appears in this film might be utterly meaningless for you. For me, however, it brought me back to my the mid-1980s. The same happened for me with the appearances of Lukas Haas and Tom Berenger. I saw myself through my visions of them.
We live according to the meanings we give our world, and we respond to those meanings, reinventing the world again and again according to the yearnings within us. Not only is film a process of projection, not only are dreams processes of projection, but so too is our world, at every layer of consciousness, subconsciousness, projections….”

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