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Category:    Home > Reviews > Action > Thriller > Mystery > Crime > Science > Dreams > Surrealism > Inception (2010/Warner Blu-ray w/DVD)

Inception (2010/Warner Blu-ray w/DVD)

 

Picture: B+/B-†††† Sound: B+/B-†††† Extras: B†††† Film: B

 

 

Doing a challenging blockbuster film is almost unheard of, yet all the dumb ones have increasingly bombed of late and rightly so.2010 is another horrible year for live action filmmaking and the cheapness of digital video is only the beginning of that tale.However, Writer/Director Christopher Nolan has been bucking that trend and I have liked every film he has made to date.He is where filmmaking should be now, but since the regressive 1980s has fallen behind.Best known for his current Batman films, Warner Bros. rightly took a risk on his project called Inception and to the shock of the industry, it became one of the biggest films of the year worldwide.

 

Leonardo DiCaprio plays a haunted man named Dom Cobb, who leads a group that can get into a form of virtual reality known as the human subconscious.It is not an easy thing, but new technology has made this possible and now, those with big money are willing to pay to obtain precious information and protect other precious information.His team (including Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Lukas Haas) are in the middle of a mission when things start to go a bit wrong.

 

Throughout the film, memory is tested, we deal with several levels of subconscious and to make matters worse, Cobb is trying to deal with his children who may or may not be lost, along with his wife/ex-wife (Marion Cotillard) keep creeping into his thinking.In all cases, giant objects can change shape, direction and where they were located.The dream state in its natural form now competes with architects who can build entire worlds in that hemisphere.This is a clever film that works, but it is one that needs your attention and we will say little more as not to ruin anything, though it finally achieves some of what Douglas Trumbullís Brainstorm (1983, reviewed elsewhere on this site) set out to do.

 

However, Nolanís influences here include the films of Stanley Kubrick and the Bond films, especially You Only Live Twice and On Her Majestyís Secret Service (all reviewed elsewhere on this site).The only problematic casting is Ellen Page, who does not seem to fit into that cast or happenings as much as she could.I like the film overall, though it misses some possibilities (Nolan has never seen Alain Resnaisí Last Year At Marienbad (1961, unreviewed, but highly recommended, especially on Criterion Blu-ray) which is still the cinematic masterwork in dealing with this kind of approach.Still, this works very well and more than justifies its smooth 148 minutes running time.Tom Hardy, Cillian Murphy, Pete Postlethwaite and Michael Caine also star.

 

 

The 1080p 2.35 X 1 digital High Definition image comes from a 35mm reduction of a film that was shot in large frame formats from various 70mm types to VistaVision for its aerial footage and very limited HD work, so donít expect 1.78 X 1 moments of IMAX quality like the Blu-ray of Nolanís Dark Knight.However, this still is an impressive transfer with few problems or flaws.Detail is good, depth can be very impressive, there is limited computer work and Director of Photography Wally Pfister, A.S.C., continues his amazing streak as one of the best cameramen in the business.The anamorphically enhanced DVD is not bad for the format, but no match for what the Blu-ray best delivers.The DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) 5.1 lossless mix on the Blu-ray is also amazing, once again sporting top rate sound design (which seems more and more like an extinct species) and another solid score for Nolan by Hans Zimmer.The DVD has a Dolby Digital 5.1 mix, but it cannot match the rich, deep sound design that played best in 70mm IMAX screens.Note the uses of silence and ambience throughout.

 

Extras include BD Live interactive functions including Project Somnacin: Confidential Files, Digital Copy for PC and PC portable devices, 5.1 soundtrack selections from Zimmerís score, Conceptual Art, Promotional Art, Trailer/TV Spot Galleries, slidecase with lenticular cover for the Blu-ray case and two featurettes: Dreams: Cinema Of The Subconscious hosted by Gordon-Levitt and Inception: The Cobol Job prolog to the film.

 

 

-†† Nicholas Sheffo


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