INCEPTION is a combination of The Matrix and Altered States and measures up to neither of them. It is a self-indulgent excuse for special effects. It is very long.
Leonardo DeCaprio channels the middle-aged Marlon Brando, mumbling and all, throughout the film. All the male characters (which are almost all of the characters) are boring suits about whom I found it difficult to care. They speak to each other in a clipped, macho style, as though the picture had been made for a Latin American male audience. The plot is ornate, and while it does make sense, an extraordinary attention span is required. There are lots of automatic weapons and explosions.
Ellen Page cannot help but be interesting, despite the fact that her character is never developed. We know she is an advanced architecture student. That’s all we know.
What I found most interesting about INCEPTION is the eerie similarity of DeCaprio’s character Cobb to his character Teddy Daniels in SHUTTER ISLAND. It’s as though he didn’t like the outcome of the first film for the character and made this one to correct it.
This is the only one of those films nominated for Best Picture that I have seen this year. I picked the wrong one. I should have watched THE KIDS ARE ALL RIGHT.