Every single moment of Inception is a dream. I think that in a
couple of years this will become the accepted reading of the film, and
differing interpretations will have to be skillfully argued to be even
remotely considered. The film makes this clear, and it never holds back
the truth from audiences. Some find this idea to be narratively
repugnant, since they think that a movie where everything is a dream is
a movie without stakes, a movie where the audience is wasting their
time.
  
  Except that this is exactly what Nolan is arguing against. The film
is a metaphor for the way that Nolan as a director works, and what he’s
ultimately saying is that the catharsis found in a dream is as real as
the catharsis found in a movie is as real as the catharsis found in
life. Inception is about making movies, and cinema is the shared dream
that truly interests the director.
  
  I believe that Inception is a dream to the point where even the
dream-sharing stuff is a dream. Dom Cobb isn’t an extractor. He can’t go
into other people’s dreams. He isn’t on the run from the Cobol
Corporation. At one point he tells himself this, through the voice of
Mal, who is a projection of his own subconscious. She asks him how real
he thinks his world is, where he’s being chased across the globe by
faceless corporate goons.
  
  She asks him that in a scene that we all know is a dream, but
Inception lets us in on this elsewhere. Michael Caine’s character
implores Cobb to return to reality, to wake up. During the chase in
Mombasa, Cobb tries to escape down an alleyway, and the two buildings
between which he’s running begin closing in on him – a classic anxiety
dream moment. When he finally pulls himself free he finds Ken Watanabe’s
character waiting for him, against all logic. Except dream logic.
  
  Much is made in the film about totems, items unique to dreamers that
can be used to tell when someone is actually awake or asleep. Cobb’s
totem is a top, which spins endlessly when he’s asleep, and the fact
that the top stops spinning at many points in the film is claimed by
some to be evidence that Cobb is awake during those scenes. The problem
here is that the top wasn’t always Cobb’s totem – he got it from his
wife, who killed herself because she believed that they were still
living in a dream. There’s more than a slim chance that she’s right –
note that when Cobb remembers her suicide she is, bizarrely, sitting on
a ledge opposite the room they rented. You could do the logical
gymnastics required to claim that Mal simply rented another room across
the alleyway, but the more realistic notion here is that it’s a dream,
with the gap between the two lovers being a metaphorical one made
literal. When Mal jumps she leaves behind the top, and if she was right
about the world being a dream, the fact that it spins or doesn’t spin is
meaningless. It’s a dream construct anyway. There’s no way to use the
top as a proof of reality.

有剧透。有剧透。有剧透。
我决定再去看一遍iMAX版本的。。

That leaves two key figures. Saito is the money guy, the big corporate
suit who fancies himself a part of the game. And Fischer, the mark, is
the audience. Cobb, as a director, takes Fischer through an engaging,
stimulating and exciting journey, one that leads him to an understanding
about himself. Cobb is the big time movie director (or rather the best
version of that – certainly not a Michael Bay) who brings the action,
who brings the spectacle, but who also brings the meaning and the
humanity and the emotion.

(图腾的说法有很多人不认同,还有细心的观众发现了“戒指”,十分仰慕这位神一样的人,那篇关于戒指的分析我觉得很好。再佩服下有不少观众都看见了演员表里其实每个孩子都由2个人演。虽然有这两点纰漏,但是我觉得这篇影评的阐述还是值得讨论一番的。)
  

     Every single moment of Inception is a dream. I think that in a
couple of years this will become the accepted reading of the film, and
differing interpretations will have to be skillfully argued to be even
remotely considered. The film makes this clear, and it never holds back
the truth from audiences. Some find this idea to be narratively
repugnant, since they think that a movie where everything is a dream is
a movie without stakes, a movie where the audience is wasting their
time.
  
  Except that this is exactly what Nolan is arguing against. The film
is a metaphor for the way that Nolan as a director works, and what he’s
ultimately saying is that the catharsis found in a dream is as real as
the catharsis found in a movie is as real as the catharsis found in
life. Inception is about making movies, and cinema is the shared dream
that truly interests the director.
  
  I believe that Inception is a dream to the point where even the
dream-sharing stuff is a dream. Dom Cobb isn’t an extractor. He can’t go
into other people’s dreams. He isn’t on the run from the Cobol
Corporation. At one point he tells himself this, through the voice of
Mal, who is a projection of his own subconscious. She asks him how real
he thinks his world is, where he’s being chased across the globe by
faceless corporate goons.
  
  She asks him that in a scene that we all know is a dream, but
Inception lets us in on this elsewhere. Michael Caine’s character
implores Cobb to return to reality, to wake up. During the chase in
Mombasa, Cobb tries to escape down an alleyway, and the two buildings
between which he’s running begin closing in on him – a classic anxiety
dream moment. When he finally pulls himself free he finds Ken Watanabe’s
character waiting for him, against all logic. Except dream logic.
  
  Much is made in the film about totems, items unique to dreamers that
can be used to tell when someone is actually awake or asleep. Cobb’s
totem is a top, which spins endlessly when he’s asleep, and the fact
that the top stops spinning at many points in the film is claimed by
some to be evidence that Cobb is awake during those scenes. The problem
here is that the top wasn’t always Cobb’s totem – he got it from his
wife, who killed herself because she believed that they were still
living in a dream. There’s more than a slim chance that she’s right –
note that when Cobb remembers her suicide she is, bizarrely, sitting on
a ledge opposite the room they rented. You could do the logical
gymnastics required to claim that Mal simply rented another room across
the alleyway, but the more realistic notion here is that it’s a dream,
with the gap between the two lovers being a metaphorical one made
literal. When Mal jumps she leaves behind the top, and if she was right
about the world being a dream, the fact that it spins or doesn’t spin is
meaningless. It’s a dream construct anyway. There’s no way to use the
top as a proof of reality.

* it’s really worth noting that if you accept that the whole movie is a
dream that Mal may not be dead. She could have just left Cobb. The
mourning that he is experiencing deep inside his mind is no less real if
she’s alive or dead – he has still lost her.

       Inception的每一刻都是梦境。电影是对诺兰作为一位导演如何工作的比喻,它最终的观点在于,我们在梦中得到的心灵净化与我们在电影中得到的一样逼真,而这与我们在现实中获得的灵魂净化同样真实。Inception讲的其实是电影的制作;而电影对导演来说则是最令人激动的共享梦境。
  
  作者认为Inception的整体全是梦境,包括共享梦境本身。Dom
Cobb的妻子Mal在剧中曾经质问过他:他竟被所谓的商业大亨全球通缉,这样的世界究竟能有多真实?Dom的父亲,Michael
Caine的角色,也曾劝戒他说要”醒过来,回归现实“。在Mombasa追逐一场戏中,Dom试图通过一条非常狭窄的小巷,最后小巷两旁的大楼竟然越靠越近,把他挤在其中——这是典型梦中焦虑的表现。当他终于挤出小巷之后,他发现齐藤正坐在车里等着接他,这完全不符合现实的逻辑——而在梦中,这便很合理。
  
  “图腾”占了电影的很大笔墨。Dom的图腾是个陀螺——旋转、停下则意味着他在现实,旋转不倒则是梦境。(这里,我认为电影说图腾的功用其实只是告诉你是否在他人的梦中,所以图腾必须由本人亲手制作,不能让别人知其特性。而如果图腾主人在自己的梦里,那么图腾倒还是不倒他的潜意识本来就都一清二楚,所以倒和不倒都不能说明什么。)但问题在于,这个图腾是Dom从妻子Mal处得来的,并非他自己制作。而Mal之所以自杀,就是因为她认为她依然身处梦境——尽管此时她的陀螺图腾肯定是转转就倒的。想想Mal自杀那场戏,他俩各在一扇窗前,二窗相对,结构非常怪异。当然,你可以说Mal又另租了一个正对面的房间,但如果这一切都在梦中,这种奇怪的建筑布局难道不更容易解释吗?Mal的死证明了陀螺倒与不倒都并不能说明Dom是否身处梦境。图腾其实无用。
  


In a lot of ways Inception is a bookend to last summer’s Inglorious
Basterds. In that film Quentin Tarantino celebrated the ways that cinema
could change the world, while in Inception Nolan is examining the ways
that cinema, the ultimate shared dream, can change an individual. The
entire film is a dream, within the confines of the movie itself, but in
a more meta sense it’s Nolan’s dream. He’s dreaming Cobb, and finding
his own moments of revelation and resolution, just as Cobb is dreaming
Fischer and finding his own catharsis and change.

原帖是英文版,大致意思:

原帖是英文版,大致意思:

I believe that Inception is a dream to the point where even the
dream-sharing stuff is a dream. Dom Cobb isn’t an extractor. He can’t go
into other people’s dreams. He isn’t on the run from the Cobol
Corporation. At one point he tells himself this, through the voice of
Mal, who is a projection of his own subconscious. She asks him how real
he thinks his world is, where he’s being chased across the globe by
faceless corporate goons.

《盗梦空间》—国外骨灰级影迷更深入的解读(比网上盛传的剧透版本更有深度,目前比较有思想的影评),告诉你整部电影根本没有现实世界,电影里图腾是什么,这个团队在比喻什么,导演想告诉观众什么。

 

As a great director, Cobb is also a great artist, which means that even
when he’s creating a dream about snowmobile chases, he’s bringing
something of himself into it. That’s Mal. It’s the auterist impulse, the
need to bring your own interests, obsessions and issues into a movie.
It’s what the best directors do. It’s very telling that Nolan sees this
as kind of a problem; I suspect another filmmaker might have cast Mal as
the special element that makes Cobb so successful.

原文:

       Inception的每一刻都是梦境。电影是对诺兰作为一位导演如何工作的比喻,它最终的观点在于,我们在梦中得到的心灵净化与我们在电影中得到的一样逼真,而这与我们在现实中获得的灵魂净化同样真实。Inception讲的其实是电影的制作;而电影对导演来说则是最令人激动的共享梦境。
  
  作者认为Inception的整体全是梦境,包括共享梦境本身。Dom
Cobb的妻子Mal在剧中曾经质问过他:他竟被所谓的商业大亨全球通缉,这样的世界究竟能有多真实?Dom的父亲,Michael
Caine的角色,也曾劝戒他说要”醒过来,回归现实“。在Mombasa追逐一场戏中,Dom试图通过一条非常狭窄的小巷,最后小巷两旁的大楼竟然越靠越近,把他挤在其中——这是典型梦中焦虑的表现。当他终于挤出小巷之后,他发现齐藤正坐在车里等着接他,这完全不符合现实的逻辑——而在梦中,这便很合理。
  
  “图腾”占了电影的很大笔墨。Dom的图腾是个陀螺——旋转、停下则意味着他在现实,旋转不倒则是梦境。(这里,我认为电影说图腾的功用其实只是告诉你是否在他人的梦中,所以图腾必须由本人亲手制作,不能让别人知其特性。而如果图腾主人在自己的梦里,那么图腾倒还是不倒他的潜意识本来就都一清二楚,所以倒和不倒都不能说明什么。)但问题在于,这个图腾是Dom从妻子Mal处得来的,并非他自己制作。而Mal之所以自杀,就是因为她认为她依然身处梦境——尽管此时她的陀螺图腾肯定是转转就倒的。想想Mal自杀那场戏,他俩各在一扇窗前,二窗相对,结构非常怪异。当然,你可以说Mal又另租了一个正对面的房间,但如果这一切都在梦中,这种奇怪的建筑布局难道不更容易解释吗?Mal的死证明了陀螺倒与不倒都并不能说明Dom是否身处梦境。图腾其实无用。
  
  电影中曾经说过,梦的感觉其实是非常真实的,我们只有在梦中感受到某些非常奇怪而无法解释的时刻时才会醒来。而Inception中的所谓现实部分,回头再看,其实就充斥了这样不合理的细节与时刻。电影的结尾就更毫无疑问是场梦境了——飘忽的画面光感,穿着同样服装、同样年龄(Dom的孩子应该至少长大了一岁),做着与Dom记忆中完全相同动作的孩子。不管那陀螺最后是否倒下,Dom都在做梦。
  
  但即使Dom是在梦中,他依然看到了孩子们的面庞,依然获得了他竭尽全力寻找的心灵净化。这里,我们必须要注意,Inception其实是诺兰本人的自传电影。在最近的一次红毯采访中,莱昂纳多并未把Inception与《骇客帝国》作比,而是比较费里尼的《8
1/2》——众所周知,《8
1/2》是费里尼的自传,是关于如何拍摄电影的电影。先前莱昂纳多还曾说过他是根据诺兰本人来刻画Dom
Cobb这个人物的。
  
  以下是此评论最关键的一部分:
  
  盗梦团队可以与电影制作过程中的主要角色一一对号。Dom
Cobb是导演,进行前期调研并布置好睡眠地点的Arthur是制片人。梦境设计师Adiadne是剧本作者——她建造我们将要进入的世界。Eames是演员(这在他坐到一面化妆镜前转换身份的细节里再明显不过,这样的化妆镜如今仍在舞台剧中使用)。约瑟夫是工程人员:别忘了,奥斯卡的全称可是电影艺术及科学协会,一部电影需要相当数量的技术人员的支撑。诺兰自己在最近的《电影评论》中多少泄漏了一些端倪:【盗梦团队的行为与拍摄一部好莱坞电影】有很多相似之处。比如当盗梦者们在自己建造的街道上行走、调查时,这与我们在开机前所进行的技术考察几乎一模一样。“
  
  剩余的还有两位主要人物。在整个游戏背后操纵的齐藤是投资方。Fischer则是观众。导演Dom
Cobb带领Fischer经历了一场令人沉迷、刺激而激动的旅程,引导他更好地了解自己。Cobb是个了不起的电影导演(或者说是电影导演中的最佳代表),他带给观众动作、特效,但也同时传达意义、人性与情感。
  
  ”电影如梦“一点是为什么Inception要把那些梦境构造得无比真实。电影中的解释说过分地改变梦境会使梦者意识到周围环境的奇怪;这基本就是所有电影都在悬疑与失信之间寻求平衡的另一种说法。一旦观众由于某些细节游离于电影之外——一个不合理的场景、一句荒谬的台词、一种失败的表演——很可能整个电影的魔力便就此丧失殆尽,观众怅然若失。
  
  ……
  
  Inception是极其重要的一部电影,因为它代表了好电影所竭力寻求的水准。经历过了一部好电影的你会发现自己焕然一新,脑子里有些新想法,就连神经系统也略微重组。在很大程度上Inception本身正是如此:观众离开电影院后对其感受与认知谈论不绝。新概念、新想法、新观点是一部好电影所赋予的比票根寿命还长的纪念品。
  
  ……对于片中Fischer这个人物来说,他在雪堡所经历的情感突破都是真实的。尽管他的父亲并不真的在那儿,尽管他的风车并非真被放在父亲病床边的保险柜里,他所感受的情感却是100%真实的。同样的,你所看的电影并非真实故事并不重要,那只是一场耗费巨资的表演并不重要——当一部电影感动你时,它便真的动人。你看《飞屋》时所流的眼泪都是真实的,尽管在你屏幕上所见的一切在现实生活中完全子虚乌有。
  
  对Dom
Cobb来说这一切有一层更深的意义。尽管他没有父子关系问题,如同Fischer,他也经历了丧失。他试图对抗妻子的死所带来的痛苦(尽管整部电影都是一场梦,Mal在电影之上的现实中也许并未真的死去,而是离婚、出走,但这都并非关键)。Fischer的经历可说是Dom
Cobb经历的映像,尽管并非丁是丁、卯是卯的一一对应。这对诺兰来说非常重要,他的电影中也常蕴含个人要素——他个人感兴趣或关心的一些事物——但这些要素又非与他实际相关。其他影人(如费里尼)拍摄的也许是略加掩饰的自传,但这并非诺兰或Cobb的选择。他们建造的电影(或梦境)反映了其心境,却并不能简单与其生活对应。在《电影评论》的采访中,诺兰说他从未试过心理分析。“我想我通过拍电影来达到同样的目的。我与我的职业之间有种炙烈的关系。”
  
  从很多方面来看,Inception都可被当作去年夏天的Inglorious
Basterds的收尾。在《无良杂种》中,昆汀以改变历史来向电影艺术致敬,而诺兰在Inception中则探索电影,这一被众人分享的终极梦幻,可如何改变个人。对电影本身来说,整部影片是一场大梦,但更抽象地说,这应是诺兰的梦。他在梦到Cobb的同时寻找自身的启示与决断,就如同Cobb梦到Fischer的同时寻找自己的心灵净化与改变。
  
  整部电影是场大梦一点绝非浪费时间,而是对电影主题与意义的终极体现。它全是假的;但同时,它又无比真实。这点对任何一位电影爱好者来说完全不言自明。

For Cobb there’s a deeper meaning to it all. While Cobb doesn’t have
daddy issues (that we know of), he, like Fischer, is dealing with a
loss. He’s trying to come to grips with the death of his wife*;
Fischer’s journey reflects Cobb’s while not being a complete point for
point reflection. That’s important for Nolan, who is making films that
have personal components – that talk about things that obviously
interest or concern him – but that aren’t actually about him. Other
filmmakers (Fellini) may make movies that are thinly veiled
autobiography, but that’s not what Nolan or Cobb are doing. The movies
(or dreams) they’re putting together reflect what they’re going through
but aren’t easily mapped on to them. Talking to Film Comment, Nolan says
he has never been to psychoanalysis. ‘I think I use filmmaking for that
purpose. I have a passionate relationship to what I do.’

 

原文:

There’s more, but I would have to watch the film again with a notebook
to get all the evidence (all of it in plain sight). The end seems
without a doubt to be a dream – from the dreamy way the film is shot and
edited once Cobb wakes up on the plane all the way through to him coming
home to find his two kids in the exact position and in the exact same
clothes that he kept remembering them, it doesn’t matter if the top
falls, Cobb is dreaming.

Watching the film with this eye you can see the dream logic unfolding.
As is said in the movie, dreams seem real in the moment and it’s only
when you’ve woken up that things seem strange. The film’s ‘reality’
sequences are filled with moments that, on retrospect, seem strange or
unlikely or unexplained. Even the basics of the dream sharing technology
is unbelievably vague, and I don’t think that’s just because Nolan wants
to keep things streamlined. It’s because Cobb’s unconscious mind is
filling it in as he goes along.
  
  There’s more, but I would have to watch the film again with a
notebook to get all the evidence (all of it in plain sight). The end
seems without a doubt to be a dream – from the dreamy way the film is
shot and edited once Cobb wakes up on the plane all the way through to
him coming home to find his two kids in the exact position and in the
exact same clothes that he kept remembering them, it doesn’t matter if
the top falls, Cobb is dreaming.
  
  That Cobb is dreaming and still finds his catharsis (that he can now
look at the face of his kids) is the point. It’s important to realize
that Inception is a not very thinly-veiled autobiographical look at how
Nolan works. In a recent red carpet interview, Leonardo DiCaprio – who
was important in helping Nolan get the script to the final stages –
compares the movie not to The Matrix or some other mind**** movie
but Fellini’s 8 1/2. This is probably the second most telling thing
DiCaprio said during the publicity tour for the film, with the first
being that he based Cobb on Nolan. 8 1/2 is totally autobiographical for
Fellini, and it’s all about an Italian director trying to overcome his
block and make a movie (a science fiction movie, even). It’s a film
about filmmaking, and so is Inception.
  
  The heist team quite neatly maps to major players in a film
production. Cobb is the director while Arthur, the guy who does the
research and who sets up the places to sleep, is the producer. Ariadne,
the dream architect, is the screenwriter – she creates the world that
will be entered. Eames is the actor (this is so obvious that the
character sits at an old fashioned mirrored vanity, the type which stage
actors would use). Yusuf is the technical guy; remember, the Oscar come
from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, and it requires a
good number of technically minded people to get a movie off the ground.
Nolan himself more or less explains this in the latest issue of Film
Comment, saying ‘There are a lot of striking similarities [between what
the team does and the putting on of a major Hollywood movie]. When for
instance the team is out on the street they’ve created, surveying it,
that’s really identical with what we do on tech scouts before we
shoot.’
  
  That leaves two key figures. Saito is the money guy, the big
corporate suit who fancies himself a part of the game. And Fischer, the
mark, is the audience. Cobb, as a director, takes Fischer through an
engaging, stimulating and exciting journey, one that leads him to an
understanding about himself. Cobb is the big time movie director (or
rather the best version of that – certainly not a Michael Bay) who
brings the action, who brings the spectacle, but who also brings the
meaning and the humanity and the emotion.
  
  The movies-as-dreams aspect is part of why Inception keeps the
dreams so grounded. In the film it’s explained that playing with the
dream too much alerts the dreamer to the falseness around him; this is
just another version of the suspension of disbelief upon which all films
hinge. As soon as the audience is pulled out of the movie by some
element – an implausible scene, a ludicrous line, a poor performance –
it’s possible that the cinematic dream spell is broken completely, and
they’re lost.
  
  As a great director, Cobb is also a great artist, which means that
even when he’s creating a dream about snowmobile chases, he’s bringing
something of himself into it. That’s Mal. It’s the auterist impulse, the
need to bring your own interests, obsessions and issues into a movie.
It’s what the best directors do. It’s very telling that Nolan sees this
as kind of a problem; I suspect another filmmaker might have cast Mal as
the special element that makes Cobb so successful.
  
  Inception is such a big deal because it’s what great movies strive
to do. You walk out of a great film changed, with new ideas planted in
your head, with your neural networks subtly rewired by what you’ve just
seen. On a meta level Inception itself does this, with audiences leaving
the theater buzzing about the way it made them feel and perceive. New
ideas, new thoughts, new points of view are more lasting a souvenir of a
great movie than a ticket stub.
  
  It’s possible to view Fischer, the mark, as not the audience but
just as the character that is being put through the movie that is the
dream. To be honest, I haven’t quite solidified my thought on Fischer’s
place in the allegorical web, but what’s important is that the
breakthrough that Fischer has in the ski fortress is real. Despite the
fact that his father is not there, despite the fact that the pinwheel
was never by his father’s bedside, the emotions that Fischer experiences
are 100 percent genuine. It doesn’t matter that the movie you’re
watching isn’t a real story, that it’s just highly paid people putting
on a show – when a movie moves you, it truly moves you. The tears you
cry during Up are totally real, even if absolutely nothing that you see
on screen has ever existed in the physical world.
  
  For Cobb there’s a deeper meaning to it all. While Cobb doesn’t have
daddy issues (that we know of), he, like Fischer, is dealing with a
loss. He’s trying to come to grips with the death of his wife*;
Fischer’s journey reflects Cobb’s while not being a complete point for
point reflection. That’s important for Nolan, who is making films that
have personal components – that talk about things that obviously
interest or concern him – but that aren’t actually about him. Other
filmmakers (Fellini) may make movies that are thinly veiled
autobiography, but that’s not what Nolan or Cobb are doing. The movies
(or dreams) they’re putting together reflect what they’re going through
but aren’t easily mapped on to them. Talking to Film Comment, Nolan says
he has never been to psychoanalysis. ‘I think I use filmmaking for that
purpose. I have a passionate relationship to what I do.’
  
  In a lot of ways Inception is a bookend to last summer’s Inglorious
Basterds. In that film Quentin Tarantino celebrated the ways that cinema
could change the world, while in Inception Nolan is examining the ways
that cinema, the ultimate shared dream, can change an individual. The
entire film is a dream, within the confines of the movie itself, but in
a more meta sense it’s Nolan’s dream. He’s dreaming Cobb, and finding
his own moments of revelation and resolution, just as Cobb is dreaming
Fischer and finding his own catharsis and change.
  
  The whole film being a dream isn’t a cop out or a waste of time, but
an ultimate expression of the film’s themes and meaning. It’s all fake.
But it’s all very, very real. And that’s something every single movie
lover understands implicitly and completely.
  
  * it’s really worth noting that if you accept that the whole movie
is a dream that Mal may not be dead. She could have just left Cobb. The
mourning that he is experiencing deep inside his mind is no less real if
she’s alive or dead – he has still lost her.

 

Inception is such a big deal because it’s what great movies strive to
do. You walk out of a great film changed, with new ideas planted in your
head, with your neural networks subtly rewired by what you’ve just seen.
On a meta level Inception itself does this, with audiences leaving the
theater buzzing about the way it made them feel and perceive. New ideas,
new thoughts, new points of view are more lasting a souvenir of a great
movie than a ticket stub.

 

 

Much is made in the film about totems, items unique to dreamers that can
be used to tell when someone is actually awake or asleep. Cobb’s totem
is a top, which spins endlessly when he’s asleep, and the fact that the
top stops spinning at many points in the film is claimed by some to be
evidence that Cobb is awake during those scenes. The problem here is
that the top wasn’t always Cobb’s totem – he got it from his wife, who
killed herself because she believed that they were still living in a
dream. There’s more than a slim chance that she’s right – note that when
Cobb remembers her suicide she is, bizarrely, sitting on a ledge
opposite the room they rented. You could do the logical gymnastics
required to claim that Mal simply rented another room across the
alleyway, but the more realistic notion here is that it’s a dream, with
the gap between the two lovers being a metaphorical one made literal.
When Mal jumps she leaves behind the top, and if she was right about the
world being a dream, the fact that it spins or doesn’t spin is
meaningless. It’s a dream construct anyway. There’s no way to use the
top as a proof of reality.

      电影中曾经说过,梦的感觉其实是非常真实的,我们只有在梦中感受到某些非常奇怪而无法解释的时刻时才会醒来。而Inception中的所谓现实部分,回头再看,其实就充斥了这样不合理的细节与时刻。电影的结尾就更毫无疑问是场梦境了——飘忽的画面光感,穿着同样服装、同样年龄(Dom的孩子应该至少长大了一岁),做着与Dom记忆中完全相同动作的孩子。不管那陀螺最后是否倒下,Dom都在做梦。
  
  但即使Dom是在梦中,他依然看到了孩子们的面庞,依然获得了他竭尽全力寻找的心灵净化。这里,我们必须要注意,Inception其实是诺兰本人的自传电影。在最近的一次红毯采访中,莱昂纳多并未把Inception与《骇客帝国》作比,而是比较费里尼的《8
1/2》——众所周知,《8
1/2》是费里尼的自传,是关于如何拍摄电影的电影。先前莱昂纳多还曾说过他是根据诺兰本人来刻画Dom
Cobb这个人物的。
  
  以下是此评论最关键的一部分:
  
  盗梦团队可以与电影制作过程中的主要角色一一对号。Dom
Cobb是导演,进行前期调研并布置好睡眠地点的Arthur是制片人。梦境设计师Adiadne是剧本作者——她建造我们将要进入的世界。Eames是演员(这在他坐到一面化妆镜前转换身份的细节里再明显不过,这样的化妆镜如今仍在舞台剧中使用)。约瑟夫是工程人员:别忘了,奥斯卡的全称可是电影艺术及科学协会,一部电影需要相当数量的技术人员的支撑。诺兰自己在最近的《电影评论》中多少泄漏了一些端倪:【盗梦团队的行为与拍摄一部好莱坞电影】有很多相似之处。比如当盗梦者们在自己建造的街道上行走、调查时,这与我们在开机前所进行的技术考察几乎一模一样。“
  
  剩余的还有两位主要人物。在整个游戏背后操纵的齐藤是投资方。Fischer则是观众。导演Dom
Cobb带领Fischer经历了一场令人沉迷、刺激而激动的旅程,引导他更好地了解自己。Cobb是个了不起的电影导演(或者说是电影导演中的最佳代表),他带给观众动作、特效,但也同时传达意义、人性与情感。
  
  ”电影如梦“一点是为什么Inception要把那些梦境构造得无比真实。电影中的解释说过分地改变梦境会使梦者意识到周围环境的奇怪;这基本就是所有电影都在悬疑与失信之间寻求平衡的另一种说法。一旦观众由于某些细节游离于电影之外——一个不合理的场景、一句荒谬的台词、一种失败的表演——很可能整个电影的魔力便就此丧失殆尽,观众怅然若失。
  
  ……
  
  Inception是极其重要的一部电影,因为它代表了好电影所竭力寻求的水准。经历过了一部好电影的你会发现自己焕然一新,脑子里有些新想法,就连神经系统也略微重组。在很大程度上Inception本身正是如此:观众离开电影院后对其感受与认知谈论不绝。新概念、新想法、新观点是一部好电影所赋予的比票根寿命还长的纪念品。
  
  ……对于片中Fischer这个人物来说,他在雪堡所经历的情感突破都是真实的。尽管他的父亲并不真的在那儿,尽管他的风车并非真被放在父亲病床边的保险柜里,他所感受的情感却是100%真实的。同样的,你所看的电影并非真实故事并不重要,那只是一场耗费巨资的表演并不重要——当一部电影感动你时,它便真的动人。你看《飞屋》时所流的眼泪都是真实的,尽管在你屏幕上所见的一切在现实生活中完全子虚乌有。
  
  对Dom
Cobb来说这一切有一层更深的意义。尽管他没有父子关系问题,如同Fischer,他也经历了丧失。他试图对抗妻子的死所带来的痛苦(尽管整部电影都是一场梦,Mal在电影之上的现实中也许并未真的死去,而是离婚、出走,但这都并非关键)。Fischer的经历可说是Dom
Cobb经历的映像,尽管并非丁是丁、卯是卯的一一对应。这对诺兰来说非常重要,他的电影中也常蕴含个人要素——他个人感兴趣或关心的一些事物——但这些要素又非与他实际相关。其他影人(如费里尼)拍摄的也许是略加掩饰的自传,但这并非诺兰或Cobb的选择。他们建造的电影(或梦境)反映了其心境,却并不能简单与其生活对应。在《电影评论》的采访中,诺兰说他从未试过心理分析。“我想我通过拍电影来达到同样的目的。我与我的职业之间有种炙烈的关系。”
  
  从很多方面来看,Inception都可被当作去年夏天的Inglorious
Basterds的收尾。在《无良杂种》中,昆汀以改变历史来向电影艺术致敬,而诺兰在Inception中则探索电影,这一被众人分享的终极梦幻,可如何改变个人。对电影本身来说,整部影片是一场大梦,但更抽象地说,这应是诺兰的梦。他在梦到Cobb的同时寻找自身的启示与决断,就如同Cobb梦到Fischer的同时寻找自己的心灵净化与改变。
  
  整部电影是场大梦一点绝非浪费时间,而是对电影主题与意义的终极体现。它全是假的;但同时,它又无比真实。这点对任何一位电影爱好者来说完全不言自明。

 

That Cobb is dreaming and still finds his catharsis (that he can now
look at the face of his kids) is the point. It’s important to realize
that Inception is a not very thinly-veiled autobiographical look at how
Nolan works. In a recent red carpet interview, Leonardo DiCaprio – who
was important in helping Nolan get the script to the final stages –
compares the movie not to The Matrix or some other mindfuck movie but
Fellini’s 8 1/2. This is probably the second most telling thing DiCaprio
said during the publicity tour for the film, with the first being that
he based Cobb on Nolan. 8 1/2 is totally autobiographical for Fellini,
and it’s all about an Italian director trying to overcome his block and
make a movie (a science fiction movie, even). It’s a film about
filmmaking, and so is Inception.

 

Watching the film with this eye you can see the dream logic unfolding.
As is said in the movie, dreams seem real in the moment and it’s only
when you’ve woken up that things seem strange. The film’s ‘reality’
sequences are filled with moments that, on retrospect, seem strange or
unlikely or unexplained. Even the basics of the dream sharing technology
is unbelievably vague, and I don’t think that’s just because Nolan wants
to keep things streamlined. It’s because Cobb’s unconscious mind is
filling it in as he goes along.
  
  There’s more, but I would have to watch the film again with a
notebook to get all the evidence (all of it in plain sight). The end
seems without a doubt to be a dream – from the dreamy way the film is
shot and edited once Cobb wakes up on the plane all the way through to
him coming home to find his two kids in the exact position and in the
exact same clothes that he kept remembering them, it doesn’t matter if
the top falls, Cobb is dreaming.
  
  That Cobb is dreaming and still finds his catharsis (that he can now
look at the face of his kids) is the point. It’s important to realize
that Inception is a not very thinly-veiled autobiographical look at how
Nolan works. In a recent red carpet interview, Leonardo DiCaprio – who
was important in helping Nolan get the script to the final stages –
compares the movie not to The Matrix or some other mind**** movie
but Fellini’s 8 1/2. This is probably the second most telling thing
DiCaprio said during the publicity tour for the film, with the first
being that he based Cobb on Nolan. 8 1/2 is totally autobiographical for
Fellini, and it’s all about an Italian director trying to overcome his
block and make a movie (a science fiction movie, even). It’s a film
about filmmaking, and so is Inception.
  
  The heist team quite neatly maps to major players in a film
production. Cobb is the director while Arthur, the guy who does the
research and who sets up the places to sleep, is the producer. Ariadne,
the dream architect, is the screenwriter – she creates the world that
will be entered. Eames is the actor (this is so obvious that the
character sits at an old fashioned mirrored vanity, the type which stage
actors would use). Yusuf is the technical guy; remember, the Oscar come
from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, and it requires a
good number of technically minded people to get a movie off the ground.
Nolan himself more or less explains this in the latest issue of Film
Comment, saying ‘There are a lot of striking similarities [between what
the team does and the putting on of a major Hollywood movie]. When for
instance the team is out on the street they’ve created, surveying it,
that’s really identical with what we do on tech scouts before we
shoot.’
  
  That leaves two key figures. Saito is the money guy, the big
corporate suit who fancies himself a part of the game. And Fischer, the
mark, is the audience. Cobb, as a director, takes Fischer through an
engaging, stimulating and exciting journey, one that leads him to an
understanding about himself. Cobb is the big time movie director (or
rather the best version of that – certainly not a Michael Bay) who
brings the action, who brings the spectacle, but who also brings the
meaning and the humanity and the emotion.
  
  The movies-as-dreams aspect is part of why Inception keeps the
dreams so grounded. In the film it’s explained that playing with the
dream too much alerts the dreamer to the falseness around him; this is
just another version of the suspension of disbelief upon which all films
hinge. As soon as the audience is pulled out of the movie by some
element – an implausible scene, a ludicrous line, a poor performance –
it’s possible that the cinematic dream spell is broken completely, and
they’re lost.
  
  As a great director, Cobb is also a great artist, which means that
even when he’s creating a dream about snowmobile chases, he’s bringing
something of himself into it. That’s Mal. It’s the auterist impulse, the
need to bring your own interests, obsessions and issues into a movie.
It’s what the best directors do. It’s very telling that Nolan sees this
as kind of a problem; I suspect another filmmaker might have cast Mal as
the special element that makes Cobb so successful.
  
  Inception is such a big deal because it’s what great movies strive
to do. You walk out of a great film changed, with new ideas planted in
your head, with your neural networks subtly rewired by what you’ve just
seen. On a meta level Inception itself does this, with audiences leaving
the theater buzzing about the way it made them feel and perceive. New
ideas, new thoughts, new points of view are more lasting a souvenir of a
great movie than a ticket stub.
  
  It’s possible to view Fischer, the mark, as not the audience but
just as the character that is being put through the movie that is the
dream. To be honest, I haven’t quite solidified my thought on Fischer’s
place in the allegorical web, but what’s important is that the
breakthrough that Fischer has in the ski fortress is real. Despite the
fact that his father is not there, despite the fact that the pinwheel
was never by his father’s bedside, the emotions that Fischer experiences
are 100 percent genuine. It doesn’t matter that the movie you’re
watching isn’t a real story, that it’s just highly paid people putting
on a show – when a movie moves you, it truly moves you. The tears you
cry during Up are totally real, even if absolutely nothing that you see
on screen has ever existed in the physical world.
  
  For Cobb there’s a deeper meaning to it all. While Cobb doesn’t have
daddy issues (that we know of), he, like Fischer, is dealing with a
loss. He’s trying to come to grips with the death of his wife*;
Fischer’s journey reflects Cobb’s while not being a complete point for
point reflection. That’s important for Nolan, who is making films that
have personal components – that talk about things that obviously
interest or concern him – but that aren’t actually about him. Other
filmmakers (Fellini) may make movies that are thinly veiled
autobiography, but that’s not what Nolan or Cobb are doing. The movies
(or dreams) they’re putting together reflect what they’re going through
but aren’t easily mapped on to them. Talking to Film Comment, Nolan says
he has never been to psychoanalysis. ‘I think I use filmmaking for that
purpose. I have a passionate relationship to what I do.’
  
  In a lot of ways Inception is a bookend to last summer’s Inglorious
Basterds. In that film Quentin Tarantino celebrated the ways that cinema
could change the world, while in Inception Nolan is examining the ways
that cinema, the ultimate shared dream, can change an individual. The
entire film is a dream, within the confines of the movie itself, but in
a more meta sense it’s Nolan’s dream. He’s dreaming Cobb, and finding
his own moments of revelation and resolution, just as Cobb is dreaming
Fischer and finding his own catharsis and change.
  
  The whole film being a dream isn’t a cop out or a waste of time, but
an ultimate expression of the film’s themes and meaning. It’s all fake.
But it’s all very, very real. And that’s something every single movie
lover understands implicitly and completely.
  
  * it’s really worth noting that if you accept that the whole movie
is a dream that Mal may not be dead. She could have just left Cobb. The
mourning that he is experiencing deep inside his mind is no less real if
she’s alive or dead – he has still lost her.

By Devin Faraci

 

She asks him that in a scene that we all know is a dream, but Inception
lets us in on this elsewhere. Michael Caine’s character implores Cobb to
return to reality, to wake up. During the chase in Mombasa, Cobb tries
to escape down an alleyway, and the two buildings between which he’s
running begin closing in on him – a classic anxiety dream moment. When
he finally pulls himself free he finds Ken Watanabe’s character waiting
for him, against all logic. Except dream logic.

 

The whole film being a dream isn’t a cop out or a waste of time, but an
ultimate expression of the film’s themes and meaning. It’s all fake. But
it’s all very, very real. And that’s something every single movie lover
understands implicitly and completely.

It’s possible to view Fischer, the mark, as not the audience but just as
the character that is being put through the movie that is the dream. To
be honest, I haven’t quite solidified my thought on Fischer’s place in
the allegorical web, but what’s important is that the breakthrough that
Fischer has in the ski fortress is real. Despite the fact that his
father is not there, despite the fact that the pinwheel was never by his
father’s bedside, the emotions that Fischer experiences are 100 percent
genuine. It doesn’t matter that the movie you’re watching isn’t a real
story, that it’s just highly paid people putting on a show – when a
movie moves you, it truly moves you. The tears you cry during Up are
totally real, even if absolutely nothing that you see on screen has ever
existed in the physical world.

The heist team quite neatly maps to major players in a film production.
Cobb is the director while Arthur, the guy who does the research and who
sets up the places to sleep, is the producer. Ariadne, the dream
architect, is the screenwriter – she creates the world that will be
entered. Eames is the actor (this is so obvious that the character sits
at an old fashioned mirrored vanity, the type which stage actors would
use). Yusuf is the technical guy; remember, the Oscar come from the
Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, and it requires a good
number of technically minded people to get a movie off the ground. Nolan
himself more or less explains this in the latest issue of Film Comment,
saying ‘There are a lot of striking similarities [between what the team
does and the putting on of a major Hollywood movie]. When for instance
the team is out on the street they’ve created, surveying it, that’s
really identical with what we do on tech scouts before we shoot.’

The movies-as-dreams aspect is part of why Inception keeps the dreams so
grounded. In the film it’s explained that playing with the dream too
much alerts the dreamer to the falseness around him; this is just
another version of the suspension of disbelief upon which all films
hinge. As soon as the audience is pulled out of the movie by some
element – an implausible scene, a ludicrous line, a poor performance –
it’s possible that the cinematic dream spell is broken completely, and
they’re lost.

Every single moment of Inception is a dream. I think that in a couple of
years this will become the accepted reading of the film, and differing
interpretations will have to be skillfully argued to be even remotely
considered. The film makes this clear, and it never holds back the truth
from audiences. Some find this idea to be narratively repugnant, since
they think that a movie where everything is a dream is a movie without
stakes, a movie where the audience is wasting their time.

This entire article is a major spoiler for Inception. Please do not read
it until you’ve experienced Christopher Nolan’s film for yourself.

Watching the film with this eye you can see the dream logic unfolding.
As is said in the movie, dreams seem real in the moment and it’s only
when you’ve woken up that things seem strange. The film’s ‘reality’
sequences are filled with moments that, on retrospect, seem strange or
unlikely or unexplained. Even the basics of the dream sharing technology
is unbelievably vague, and I don’t think that’s just because Nolan wants
to keep things streamlined. It’s because Cobb’s unconscious mind is
filling it in as he goes along.

Except that this is exactly what Nolan is arguing against. The film is a
metaphor for the way that Nolan as a director works, and what he’s
ultimately saying is that the catharsis found in a dream is as real as
the catharsis found in a movie is as real as the catharsis found in
life. Inception is about making movies, and cinema is the shared dream
that truly interests the director.

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