Leonardo DiCaprio is no stranger to blockbuster films. Heck, just about every movie he’s been in over the last couple of decades has been a monster hit either critically, or at the box office, and most often times, both. And one of those bigger movies is now crushing it on streaming. Is the top still spinning or did it stop? Go and find out by watching Inception which is ranked #5 on HBO streaming in the United States right now.
Inception was the first time Christopher Nolan and Leonardo Dicaprio had worked together on a movie. The former was coming off a tremendous run of films that had started with 2000s Memento and Insomnia but ramped up into big-budget, big box office fare with Batman Begins and then The Dark Knight. It was with these latter two films that the director showcased the ability to take huge set pieces and also a layered story to bring movie magic. He brought this to Inception as well.
Inception is a thought-provoking, mind-bending, and reality-altering heist film of the highest order. It stars Leonardo DiCaprio as Dom Cobb, the de facto leader of a small group of folks with a particular set of skills. Namely, they are able to enter and manipulate people’s dreams in order to get access to their thoughts. The mechanics of the memory/ thought extraction are a bit fuzzy, which is to say we don’t need to understand all of the fake science. But they are damn good at what they do.
The idea behind inception, from where the movie takes its title, is that instead of getting into someone’s memory bank via this artificial dream world, the group instead implants an idea as if the victim came to it on their own. Leonardo DiCaprio and the crew are tasked with just this mission and he sees it as an opportunity to return to the United States where he’s become a fugitive criminal. There’s also an element to Cobb’s own psyche in which he’s dealing with the death of his wife. Again, this is a very layered movie, and trying to sum it up in a couple of paragraphs is folly. Know that Nolan and company keep you guessing throughout the film with a totally new look at “reality”. Here, check out the trailer for Inception:
At its core, Inception is a “one last job” type of heist movie in that Leonardo DiCaprio is trying to pull off the big one in order to overcome a number of different issues in his own life. From that perspective, the concept is relatively simple. But the movie is also incredibly complex with the story moving in and out of reality, sometimes unbeknownst even to the viewer. There are times we “wake up” right along with the rest of the cast in the story. It’s a fascinating film.
Joining Leonardo DiCaprio is a stacked cast who all realized the upside of working with the actor (he was the first to sign on) and Nolan whose name was on the considerable rise. There’s Joseph Gordon-Levitt as Arthur, Cobb’s righthand man, Tom Hardy as Eames who specializes in identity theft, and Elliott Page as Ariadne who is a new recruit through whose eyes we see how the dream world is made and shaped. Cillian Murphy plays their mark and Marion Cotillard plays Cobb’s late wife. There’s also Nolan regular Michael Caine as well as Ken Watanabe, Lukas Haas, and Tom Berenger.
Inception was another critical darling for Christopher Nolan and Leonardo DiCaprio. It’s sitting at 87% on Rotten Tomatoes and 74 on Metacritic with reviews praising the story, acting performances, and ability to keep the viewer guessing throughout. And it also crushed at the box office as well. On a huge $160 million budget, it still managed to return a huge number with almost $840 million in ticket sales.
And come awards season it was no slouch either. Though Leonardo DiCaprio wasn’t nominated for his individual role, on a higher level this film nearly made it all the way to the mountain top. It was nominated for Best Picture and Best Original Screenplay while winning for Best Editing, Mixing, and Effects. The latter were well-deserved with the film bringing amazing set pieces onto the screen.
In all, if you haven’t seen this movie, know that it’s a borderline classic and more than holds up even over a decade later. There’s a reason it is crushing on HBO right now seeing as how the film’s themes, story, and effects play as well now as they did back then. Join the masses that are revisiting Inception on streaming.