Christopher Nolan’s “Inception” has made for one of the most tightly guarded projects to come along in quite some time. Plot descriptions have been relegated to “it’s a contemporary sci-fi actioner set within the architecture of the mind,” while the teaser trailer that debuted online yesterday and with select prints of “Inglourious Basterds” over the weekend was careful not to give away too much of the story. It was a teaser in the strictest sense of the word, and I fully respect Nolan for that.

I’ve heard that Nolan hates the internet. He is a director who respects the integrity of experiencing a film fresh and without the barrage of story-specific publicity that can ruin, or at the very least, lessen the impact of that experience. Having helmed two of the most hotly anticipated films of all time in “Batman Begins” and “The Dark Knight,” I can certainly understand how he might develop this position, if in fact he has. And “Inception,” with all it’s secrecy, has this same air of anticipation around it as fans and journalists clamor for more information. (A faux script review was even posted as an April Fools Day prank, drumming up tons of excitement.)

So with that in mind, you can probably understand why I would feel somewhat conflicted about revealing what I know of the “Inception” plot after the jump. I’ve sat on this for quite a while, actually, but with elevated interest in the project following the trailer debut, I thought it was a good time to spill.


I have not read the script for “Inception,” so this information is all second hand from someone who has. If it seems vague in areas, it is because my source was recounting from memory. I can’t be 100% sure how much of this gels with the truth because WB publicity can’t comment on the film’s plot points. I’m not able to verify this with them. But it all seems fairly legitimate to me.

In a nutshell, the source says “Inception” takes place in a world where we have developed a means by which we can enter people’s dreams. Leonardo DiCaprio’s character Cobb has been described as a “CEO type,” but he is also something of a criminal. He dives into people’s dreams to extract information.

Ellen Page will play Ariadne, a young college student studying in Paris who is a part of Cobb’s team (along with Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s Arthur and Tom Hardy’s Eames). Cobb’s team actually “creates” the dreams and Ariadne is an “architect” of the them. She engineers them.

When Cobb’s team enters the dreams, it is not via a machine such as “The Matrix” or “The Cell,” I’m told. It is via injection, and the technology can easily be transported in a suitcase. In one scene (featured briefly in the trailer, I believe), the team actually enters a person’s dream while on an airplane.

Cillian Murphy stars as Fischer, a business-type who is soon to become the head of a company. Cobb’s team is attempting to insert an idea into Fischer’s mind to compel him to separate the company into two smaller companies. The reasoning for this is unclear on my end.

Ken Watanabe plays Saito, a character blackmailing Cobb. For what reason and to what extreme, I do not know. Aside from him, there is no classic villain in the story, but Cobb’s wife (Marion Cotillard) causes some trouble.

The two of them at some point find themselves stuck in many levels of a dream and Cobb’s wife tries to convince him to stay in that world, that it is much better than real life. However, Cobb wants to return to his children and the real world.

This plot point is a bit unclear (and is a MASSIVE SPOILER), but I’m told that the wife commits suicide in the dream in order to return to the real world. When Cobb himself returns, he is charged with his wife’s murder and has to flee with his children.

The film will not be typical sci-fi fare at all. It is set in the real world, present day. And virtually all of the “action” scenes take place in the dream environment. This should go a long way toward explaining the “Your mind is the scene of the crime” tagline that accompanied the trailer. Ultimately it seems like a grounded, more tangible blend of “Minority Report” and “The Matrix.”

That’s all I’ve got. If you’re still reading, your thoughts?


This article is here thanks to Vinci Veni, who gave me the link, so thanks! PLEASE READ THE MASSIVE SPOILER WARNING, PLEASE! That thing just ruined the movie for me. Dammit.

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