RvRant: Inception

And now for something completely different. Inspired by seeing Inception, Ross McD and Ross McG had the following email conversation. Normally we wouldn’t subject you guys to this sort of guff, but it does have some revealing insights into the tiny minds of the Rosses and we’d be delighted to hear your thoughts on the movie. WARNING: there be plenty of Inception spoilers below, so if you haven’t seen the movie, don’t read on. Don’t worry, you’re not missing much.


McG: 15:23

okay son, what didnt you understand

McD: 15:27

Right: remember Cillian Murphy was killed in the third level of his own dream (the snow place)?
a) why did he go to Leo’s version of limbo, and b) how did leo and ellen page get down there? its made out they went to sleep on level 3, but leo said you had to die to get down there

McG: 1539

uh…. John… uh
hehe, i have no idea dude
those are good questions though, dont remember him saying you had to die to get down there
i guess it was a mix of leo’s and cillian’s subconsciousnesses, or something
in fairness, theres holes the whole way through it im sure
but if you picked holes in a film where people walk around in each other dreams you might get a bit angry at yourself
i think we should do a battle next week: Inception v Inception
could be a mindbender
man, there were some bad trailers beforehand – A-Team chief among them

McD: 1550

I keep talking to people who ‘had no problem following it’ who are subsequently stumped by that, which goes to show they werent paying close enough attention to even notice it in the first place.
You’re right, it obviously had the potential for lots of plot holes, but i didnt see that many, which is one of the best things about it – the attention to detail.
The only problem I had with it was how it made out the act of Inception was so difficult, when extraction is so (relatively) easy
I liked his ‘elephants’ example – you say ‘dont think of elephants’ and i automatically think of elephants.
However his follow up point of Im ‘always aware that is someone elses suggestion’ I dont buy.
You say ‘dont think of elephants’ and ill think of elephants
I wont think ‘dammit, Ross McGuinness is making me think of elephants’

McG: 1556

i thought the inception looked pretty damn difficult actually
dammit, now im thinking Ross McGuinness made Ross McDonagh think of elephants
man, people are jerks. when ive no clue whats going on in a film, im first to say so afterward. but like i say, i like films like that. ill probably go again to see it, not to try to work it out (cos im gonna be just as dumb in a few weeks time as i am today) but just to soak it all up again. my mouth was open for a good 30 seconds when the van first went through the barrier. little did i know it would stay there for another half hour in a superb extended end sequence
seriously, i think all i need in a movie these days is loud guns and some Hans Zimmer
am defo gonna buy the score for that
and i never do that.
you got to hand it to Nolan. am sure at some point therell be a backlash against him, but he manages to make blockbusters into real event movies, know what i mean? you feel as if youre watching something really epic
not like the usual turds you see every week at the cinema

McD: 1601

Uh, I said Inception was difficult
Did you mean ‘extraction’?
What I meant was, if you can extract, then inception should be pretty much the same deal.
The score is superb, although I dont think itll work well without the visual, so id prob skip the cd
I completely agree – the one thing this film made me realise is how shit other films are. Its the fist time in a long time ive thought €10: well spent

McG: 1603

ah right, i got confused. inception is planting an idea, extraction is taking it – is that right?
what are you thinking of right now?

McD: 1612

McG: 1644

what about Inception v Inception then? a battle within a battle, or something
we both say what we like and dislike about it and then just ask people who they agree with more?

McD: 1654

Heh heh
its ballsy
i like it
we’d need to flesh out the idea a bit more

McG: 1656

yeah, maybe needs a bit more of an angle but we can come up with something
i think its something we should do when new movies come out anyway the odd time
my opinion v yours on the same movie
basically a twist on the boring review everyone does
problem is wed both have to see the movie..

McD: 1700

For & Against would make sense, like Empire
A doubled up opinion piece might work as is

McG: 1709

for and against has been done
maybe if we both gave the movie a mark at the end our pieces and then asked readers to give their own or pick which one of ours they preferred
i dunno

McD: 1715

either way, lets go for it
will be fun as its a mind fuck movie
wanted to write a review anyway but was too lazy, this will kill two birds

McG: 1719

yeah, sounds good
we can both write what we write and then if we need to tweak format or come up with any ideas we can
SPOILER FREE reviews though
but yeah, lets fuck with our four readers’ heads

McD: 1721

Will be very tough to keep spoiler free
I cant ask my questions then!

McG: 1737

i think i enjoyed Inception so much because i had deliberately avoided reading anything about it
i watched the first trailer months ago but vowed to watch no more after that
nice to see a blockbuster relatively fresh
i think its the way to go
could be a post in this opinion…
need to get back into writing more rvr
the other thing i liked about it was it was a hollywood film with no bad guys (youre not allowed to ‘extract’ my opinions for your review by the way)
i kept waiting for Joseph Love Hewitt to betray Leo but it didnt happen, which was good.
Cillian Murphy really is a terrific actor, he should be in everything
he reminds me of my brother sometimes with that thick hair of his
not you, my real brother

McD: 1740

Oh I completely agree
Same with Killer Inside ME, hadnt a fucking clue what it was about, enjoyed it so much more because of it
Opposite end of the the Stick was Watchmen, which I had more or less seen in its entirety before i went the cinema
Great point about the bad guy
One of my favourite non hollywodd conforms was there was no twist

McG 1739

imagine, for instance, if i had read this review before seeing the movie
shame on you bradshaw – he tells you everything!


ever since Cosmo Landesman in the Sunday Times told me the old lady dies in UP i have stopped reading him
he really is lazy

McD: 1743

I know – on Spin a reviewer said ‘I wont mention anything about the ending, you really have to make your own mind up about what happens’ – thereby completelt ruining the ending!
Anyone who heard that would know exactly what was goin to happen
reviewers are dicks

McG: 1746

huh? i dont get it
reviewers are dicks though
really the lowest form of life i can think of
glad we steer clear of straight-up reviews mostly

McD: 1752

Think about it, if you knew halfway through the film you ‘need to make up your own mind at the end’, youd know what was going to happen

McG: 1756

man, my head is starting to hurt now
you must be a bit quicker than me

McD: 1811

Have mailed myself those links, will have a look later
If I hadve heard that spin review before seeing the film, i would have known how it would end, thus ruining the best film ending ever
Top ten cinema moments. everyone in the cinema was unaware they were leaning forwrad, mouths agape…..before everyone collectively groaned, then laughed, then applauded. Great

McG: 1816

you mean the open-endedness of the ending? explain to me how the spin review would have given it away. i dont understand
which bit were mouths apape?
to be honest, i didnt see the ending as openended. i just thought hed got out
i knew the spinning top was his totem but id missed the bit where he said if its still spinning youre still in a dream
i am slow

the cinematical link i sent you is rather good. interesting stuff.

McD: 1824

Well its open to your interpretation, hence the, um, open-endedness
The film is about dreaming – either something is a dream or it isnt. Leo constantly checks his totem throughout
If you knew the ending was ‘to be decided’ it is obviously going to end on the spinning totem
I think so anyway
How did you miss that bit? you’re hilarious. too used to shit films that dont need attention paying
Another question – how does ellen page’s chess piece totem help her tell if shes in a dream or not?

McG: 1836

i just dont see how you would get what the ending meant from that comment by the spin reviewer before seeing it… explain it to me
yeah, im an idiot when it comes to stuff like that, i knew he had a totem but not what it did signified
hehe, your totem could be a Lego Stormtrooper
so when you were watching it, were you constantly thinking: ‘this whole thing could be a dream and there is no reality’?
if so thats impressive.
i tend to just let movies wash over me
i obviously didnt pay enough attention early on. i found it took a while to get going. there were a few ponderous scenes of explaining
but i guess some explaining is needed in a concept movie like that

McD: 1845

‘i just dont see how you would get what the ending meant from that comment by the spin reviewer before seeing it… explain it to me’
I cant break it down any further tha that

‘hehe, your totem could be a Lego Stormtrooper’
I did figure out what the totem was before he explained it, and had already decided on a Pikachu zipper I have on my Wolves fleece

‘so when you were watching it, were you constantly thinking: ‘this whole thing could be a dream and there is no reality’?’
No, i didnt guess the ending, but i think i would have with the spin spoiler. There was so many dream/not a dream/dream within a dream permutations, it was too complicated to try guess ahead, which as I said, was one of the films best aspects

‘ i found it took a while to get going. there were a few ponderous scenes of explaining. but i guess some explaining is needed in a concept movie like that’
I thought that too at the start, but as soon as I realised what sort of scale the film was dealing with, I changed my mind and though he just explained enough

Wow what was the last film to have us talking like this?

McG: 1841

now ive just read the spinning top was starting to topple before the credits went black
man, ive missed everything!
hopefully Toy Story 3 wont be as confusing

McD: 1846

Yeah, they had to do that.
I think if it hadve just spun uninterupted people wouldve assumed it was going to stay like that, and it was a dream.
I remember thinking that subtle wobble was an excellent touch

McG: 1858

how did i miss this top spinning?! every article i read is about it
i really am the dumbest of dumbfucks
maybe i was projecting my own subconscious on to the movie and was just so glad to see Leo survive a movie for once that i missed it
oh, and by the way, whats this Rosebud thing they keep going on about in Citizen Kane?

McD: 1904

Hang on – you didnt see the top spinning at all?
Maybe you didnt go to the cinema, you just dreamed you did

McG: 1908

McG’s viewing of the Inception ending:

‘Ah, thats lovely, Leo’s back seeing his kids. Oh, and he can see their faces. Aw, and Batman’s butler is there too. This is lovely.
It’s sunny and he’s back with his kids, not sliding off a huge plank that Kate Winslet is hogging. Or on the phone in pain to Jennifer ‘CGI tears’ Connelly. Or being shot by Lex Luthor. Or getting in a lift with Matt Damon. This is nice. Ah, he’s spinning his little toy. Good on im. He has a lot of fun with that toy. I’ll be it cheers him up if he’s having a nightmare. Good stuff.
Right… film’s over, must get some lunch before I go to work. Man, the trailer for the A-Team was really rubbish…’

McD: 1912

You should start a movie website

McG: 1913

Alternate Endings by Ross McG
could be a running feature
i really think we should stick this mail thread on the site
the world deserves to see it

McD: 1920

Could make a good post alright
Maybe follow up our Inception battle with a spoiler warning post, open up the discussion to the floor
You could be onto something there, get some meaningful comments and return hittage

McG: 2046

if we do this email thing what could we call it?
i think it could be a good regular feature
and easy too
just us venting about movies back and forth old and new

– Movie (e)Mail Bag – hehe thats terrible
– Film Thread
– 3e e-mail
– RvR e-edition
– RvRvEmail

who knows, if the idea takes off we could get our buds in on the thread
Daz knows his shit

 McD: 1235 (day 2)

Man, I spent the whole night reading those links, my head hurts. One guy asked my ‘how did Leo and Ellen Page get to limbo Q, but no-one answered it. On the other Q, why ‘did they go to Leo’s version of limbo’ someone mentioned it’s a collective conscious down there I do actually remember them explaining that in the film. Someone else made a great point too: If Mal is correct and she and Leo are dreaming, when she kills herself, wouldnt she just wake up presumably beside a sleeping Leo, whom she would immediately wake up? Why doesnt Leo explain this to her?

Everyone seems to be caught up in the ‘which parts of the film are dreams/ is he dreaming at the end or is it real’ argument, but I think everyone is missing the main point: Leo doesnt stick around to watch if the totem falls or not – he doesnt care. All he cares about is seeing his kids, dream or no. I think what he learns from Mal is that it doesnt really matter if you’re dreaming or not, reality is perception. If everyone has such trouble telling whether they are dreaming or not, then what does it matter?



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3 Responses to “RvRant: Inception”

  1. Re: Needing to die to go into limbo – In the warehouse on dream level one Leo said that he and the wife ended up in limbo after they kept going deeper and deeper into the levels of dream – they didn’t die.
    So he knew that if they went down further levels they would get to limbo. A bit convenient maybe that they only had to go down one more level, but sin é.

  2. About limbo…maybe dying sends you straight to limbo, but if it’s a level with an actual number, I guess you could go one by one until you get there. And, I think it’s a shared level, not specific to anyone…I mean, it could be this neverending plain that anyone stuck there can manipulate, and enough space that they’d never know someone else was down there.

  3. I remembered Eames mentioning that if they died they would end up in Fischer’s limbo, but I would have to watch it again.

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