The film starts with a memory, or a vision from the future, no one is quite sure. We are then quickly taken back to a time before that memory, and the characters are introduced.
We first meet Dom Cobb, a slightly unstable and troubled, but undoubtedly clever, 'dream thief.' His job, unsurprisingly, involves infiltrating the minds of people and stealing their dreams, to gain an idea of their thoughts and motives. Now at first he seems to be a rather normal man, which a rather abnormal job. However, we are soon introduced to his many flaws and weaknesses. For instance, he often warns his colleagues to never use personal feelings when in a dream, but he constantly takes around the guilt he carries. He feels guilty because his wife committed suicide, and he blames himself. He was trying to extend the idea of mere dream entering, and begin a world changing concept, inception.
This means that they would have to plant an idea in someone's mind so that it grows into a feeling and they act upon this feeling, scary stuff really. He did this to his wife successfully, but he made her believe that she was in a dream however she was in reality. We are told that the only way to be released from a dream is to die in the dream, and so she kills herself to return to her 'reality.' Dom Cobb blames himself for this and so, whenever he enters a dream, she follows him around, attempting to sabotage the whole operation.
We are then acquainted with Arthur, Eames, Mr. Saito and Ariadne, and these are all accomplices of the main man. Arthur and Eames are his assistants they support him by acting as his friends or enemies inside the dream.
The plot is, to say the least, baffling. Dom Cobb and his buddies decide to enter the mind of one Robert Fischer, to stop him from taking over his father's company and becoming a multimillionaire and providing energy to half the world. Mr. Saito is the man who gives them the job of planting an idea inside Robert Fischer's mind, and so he insists on going into the dream with them. They then go through different levels or phases of dreams, such as level 1, 2 and 3. Level 1 is merely a dream. Level 2 is a dream within a dream, which is confusing, and then Level 3, which is a dream within a dream within a dream, and by this point I was truly bewildered.
Although the plot is extremely confusing, it is very well written. The acting is phenomenal, with a special mention going to Leonardo DiCaprio, whose performance was exceptional. It had been said that this film was one which had to be watched twice to gain the full experience and understanding of the plot, and I agree with this wholeheartedly, although it did leave me scratching my head even after the second viewing.
The choice of music is also quite good and I was usually left thinking to myself that that song summed up the scene perfectly. The same has to be said with the costumes, they were generally well chosen. The suits were all immaculate, and the snow suits were also quite a nice touch.
My favourite scene was definitely the one which confused me the most. The final scene is set in Leonardo DiCaprio's house. He returns, thinking that the children will run away like they normally do, but instead they run towards him. He takes a small object with him, like every other dream thief, to distinguish between dreams and reality. Dom Cobb takes a spinning top, which spins forever when he is in a dream. The viewer thinks he is in a dream, as his children are running back to him, but the spinning top ceases to spin. This, I think, is the scene that confuses many people and it is the reason that many people have to return to see it once more.
I hope that 'Inception' signifies the beginning of a new wave of futuristic films, and if it has paved the way for other similar films to arrive, then I will be glad. This film is definitely worth watching, and I would highly recommend it. While the film is slightly unrealistic in the way that they jovially jump from dream to dream, it is most certainly a film that will stick in my mind for a long time.