Saturday, July 26, 2014

Review: Inception (2010) again

I know... I've watched Inception several times already since watching it on the big screen. However, my latest viewing of it, which was sometime earlier this month, was quite different. I was with friends who have never seen it and I was answering their questions (attempting, more like it) about the movie's premise on dreaming within a dream within a dream and its iconic soundtrack as we went along... and then I did a double take. It may have taken years before I've realized this but I gasped when I did:

The structure of the movie was like a deep dive into Dante Alighieri's Inferno! I am easily frightened by his descriptions (and the illustrations in the book I borrowed from the library) so I haven't been able to progress to Purgatorio and Paradiso. Anyway, my Eureka! moment happened when my friends were asking for a recap on the different dream levels and I realized that these were akin to Dante's Nine Circles of Hell. In the movie, however, there were only three dream levels and then there's limbo. The main characters had to go deep into the dream states into limbo and then use a 'kick' to rapidly climb back up to consciousness as the world crumbled in time with the bass notes of the trombone.

The idea that the dream levels concept in Inception could have been adapted from Inferno was so new to me that I had thought that I was the first to have thought of it... four years after the movie had shown in cinemas. But there are, certainly, many avid fans of Inception and conspiracy theorists who couldn't get over the movie who have thought the same thing. For instance, Eric Buenrostro compared and contrasted the two works of art throughly:

And then, are numerous blog posts referring to Inferno in the context of Inception. The three posts with links below were all written shortly after the movie was shown in 2010.

I was actually four years too slow. Hahaha! And I think Inferno popped up while I was watching because I've finally finished reading Dan Brown's Inferno earlier this year!