Film Inception Discussion

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11:20:05 AM Jun 19th 2012
edited by johnnye
Recursive Reality:
  • The various levels of dreams. Just so we're clear, the conversation where Cobb offers to help guard Saito against idea theft is a flashback, within a dream within a dream within a dream within a dream within a dream (possibly within a dream), to a dream within a dream, possibly within a dream.
    • Actually, that scene is just a dream within a dream. Cobb wasn't recalling the Saito job while undertaking the Fischer job, they both took place on screen one after the other.

Removed the second part because Conversation in the Main Page. But I can't work out whether or not it's an accurate correction (at least not without rewatching) so maybe someone else can fix the original entry if it's inaccurate.
11:20:11 AM Apr 8th 2012
On the main page, at least, it is stated a few times that Christopher Nolan only did the Dark Knight trilogy to get funds and resources to make Inception. Does anyone have a link to where he says this? Thanks!
03:06:57 PM Jun 27th 2011
You know, I think it's about time Inception got its own Grand Unifying Guess page. There's already dozens of series that "take place" in Limbo, and many of those include series that are traditionally part of a GUG such as Haruhi and Evangelion. I've also seen a large number of WM Gs that hypothesized that various dream sequences/trippy sequences were actually caused by extractors infiltrating the character's dreams, ect.
06:17:19 PM Jun 1st 2011
How would this be included?

I found a story on Cracked, and a linking video, showing that much of the Inception soundtrack is actually je ne regrette nien slowed down.

I found it amazing.

Article: (last item)

08:47:29 PM May 13th 2011
edited by neoYTPism
I recently added Mal as a Complete Monster, and her Wounded Gazelle Gambit as a Moral Event Horizon.

More recently than that, however, I scrapped the "Complete Monster" part in light of the excuses the movie gives her.

However, I'm still convinced that Moral Event Horizon is a perfectly fitting label for her indefensible Wounded Gazelle Gambit. What say you, TV Tropes?

  • Moral Event Horizon: Mal's Wounded Gazelle Gambit. She planned to kill herself (though only to "wake up"; she thinks she's dreaming) and convince her husband to go with her. This alone wouldn't be a Moral Event Horizon if not for her method of going about the latter; she told her lawyer that she was fearing for her life, and then trashed the room Cobb was in, just so that if she died and he didn't go with her, everyone would think he killed her. Mal literally framed her own husband for murder, and she doesn't seem to voice the slightest shred of remorse for it.
09:00:18 PM May 13th 2011
edited by Jordan
I think the Moral Event Horizon classification is pretty reasonable. She does kind of come across as basically the closest thing the movie has to a Big Bad (granted, that Mal exists in Cobb's head, but still...)
09:25:12 PM May 13th 2011
edited by KingZeal
She can't exactly be considered evil, because she wasn't in sound mental health, based solely on factors beyond her control. It would be like calling a schizophrenic Evil for a crime they committed because they had no medication to deal with their condition.
08:51:42 AM May 14th 2011
"She can't exactly be considered evil, because she wasn't in sound mental health" - King Zeal

The Joker wasn't exactly in sound mental health, does that mean he's not evil?

The question is whether or not her insanity is an excuse for threatening to frame her own husband for murder, and then following through on that threat. I don't think it is.
08:52:38 AM May 14th 2011
Oh, and Jordan, while Mal does exist exclusively in Cobb's head for MOST of the movie, the Moral Event Horizon I'm referring to comes from the "actual" Mal.
08:26:41 AM May 15th 2011
The Joker wasn't exactly in sound mental health, does that mean he's not evil?

Apples and oranges. For one thing, aside from socioopathy (which he wasn't born with, as far as we know), the Joker has never demonstrated any real psychological problems. He doesn't hear voices, he doesn't see the ghost of J Edgar Hoover, he doesn't think he's a butterfly, he isn't afraid of showers, etc. In fact, part of the appeal of the character is that you can't tell if he's crazy or making it all up.

Second of all, "evil" is not the same as Complete Monster. To be a Complete Monster, you have to be beyond remorse, redemption, or any sort of redeeming qualities. Mal was not; she genuinely loved Cobb and her children, but she thought that her world wasn't real (again, not by her own fault). As the trope is defined, Mal does NOT qualify as a Complete Monster.
08:55:19 AM Aug 17th 2011
edited by nwtroper88
Mal and Joker seem to have different kinds of mental issues. The real human and previously-alive Mal wasn't a sociopath. Her problem was that she lost her grip on reality. Framing Cobb to be an abusive husband and father didn't seem like a big deal to her because she thinks that they're in a dream; so what's the harm in framing him then?

I'm NOT saying what she did was right, but I don't think she planned that wounded gazelle gambit for malicious reasons. She thought she was doing a sensible thing, but had lost her touch with reality and became really twisted.
09:48:21 PM May 12th 2011
Removed this entry on Determinator:

  • Determinator: Deconstructed. Quite literally, Cobb is his own worst enemy. The mental projection of his wife that hounds the protagonists is merely his dogged determination to keep his wife "alive" in some shape or form, to ease his own guilt over her death. Furthermore, Inception itself is revealed to be a brutal deconstruction of this. Once an idea is incepted, it defines the victim, making that single idea the one thing that they will never give up on, no matter what.

As I mentioned in the edit reason, the movie comes across as having a PRO-determination message more than anything, given the group's persistence despite the obstacles they face. I'm leaving this blank for now, but I'm hoping to see if this can start a discussion on how to interpret Inception's implied approach to perseverence.
10:36:24 PM May 12th 2011
As the person who added that trope, I just wanted to say: deconstructions don't always display a trope negatively. The value of persistence is shown in both positive AND negative light throughout the movie, but it's ultimately shown to be something not to be taken lightly.
08:50:39 PM May 13th 2011
I don't think the trope Determinator implies that it's to be taken lightly at all, so I don't see how saying it isn't to be taken lightly is a deconstruction...
09:22:12 PM May 13th 2011
Let me rephrase. When I say "not to be taken lightly", I mean in the sense that it's usually portrayed as something awesome, inspiring or heroic in the context of the story. In this case, the idea of never giving up and fighting until the end are treated as something volatile. It's treated as something much like a radioactive substance: incredibly powerful if applied correctly, but it'll decay everything it touches if not.

Also, rethinking what you said about the group's "persistence": that was all Cobb (and to an extent Ariadne). The perfect examples of that are the scene when they all meet inside the warehouse and everyone except Cobb wants to abort and then the scene in which Fischer dies and Cobb is ready to quit. Eames didn't care one whit; it's only because Ariadne was invested in Cobb's goals that they pressed on.

So yeah, I'm thoroughly convinced that this is a deconstruction.
06:07:16 PM Mar 11th 2011
I think this Actor Allusion sub-example is a bit of a stretch, and rather covoluted.

Crossing over with Wrestler in All of Us and Fridge Brilliance. At one point, Arthur locks a hostile projection in a hold known as the Cobra Clutch. The move was used (and named after) Sgt. Slaughter, a wrestler who was also a character in G.I. Joe. Levitt portrayed Cobra Commander in the G.I. Joe movie.
02:07:52 PM Jan 30th 2011
Am I the only person who saw that scene where the one guy was in the zero gravity second level dream, pushing everyone down the hall, and thought it was funny? I mean, c'mon, that was serious narm!
02:10:54 PM Jan 30th 2011
When I saw the film, myself and many in the theatre thought it was funny. I think it was deliberately humorous though, so it wouldn't be narm, more like Narm Charm if anything.
10:54:53 AM Dec 18th 2010
Where can I add fridge entry? It's like this. So Arthur is fighting mooks in rotating hallway and zero gravity...but what about projections/customers in hotel?
03:53:20 PM Dec 18th 2010
Just bugs me.
04:43:09 PM Dec 16th 2010
"A caper from Christopher Nolan. Unlike your average heist, it's not about taking something, but about leaving something behind."

@ everyone who contributed the first line: fantastic job. I'd swear C. Nolan himself wrote it.
07:40:37 PM Dec 14th 2010
edited by Camacan
When replacing on the main page please provide details. We don't cite tropes without giving a short explanation of how they apply to the work.
07:40:06 PM Dec 14th 2010
edited by Camacan
Examples should provide details rather than depending on a link. See the Tips Worksheet.
04:09:23 AM Dec 6th 2010
Ambiguously Gay: Eames

Given that the film deals with solely ONE romantic relationship, and the other characters' sexualities are not relevant, is this really a justified addition? They're all ambiguously gay in that they could be - but we'll never know as their orientations aren't important... Also, I see no evidence of Eames being ambiguously gay, but I'm willing to be persuaded by a troper's evidence...
04:46:51 AM Dec 6th 2010
Ambiguously Gay is one of those tropes that doesn't need to be absolutely proven. So long as the character shows "signs" (such as crossdressing, flirting with men, or acting effeminate), they count. And Eames did all three. (Pretended to be a woman, flirted with Saito afterward, and called Arthur "darling".)
05:39:13 AM Dec 8th 2010
edited by loracarol
Maybe I'm splitting hairs here, but that seems more a trademark of his sarcastic and prankster sensibilities...calling Arthur "darling" comes off more as him being condescending, the "crossdressing" is necessary to the plot, and the flirting with Saito just seemed like a bit of a joke, which then set up the semi-"oh crap" moment when Saito confused Dream-Peter Browning with Eames-Peter Browning. They all seemed perfunctory to the story rather then elements of a character...

Then again, this could just be a massive Your Mileage May Vary, and me just being too pedantic.
01:45:53 PM Dec 8th 2010
Eh, Eames' gayness is ambiguous but hints are there. More than the other characters, certainly. The three things King Zeal mentioned are present for him and IIRC not there for any of the others.

(And actually there are two romantic relationships: Cobb & Mal and Arthur & Ariadne.)
02:01:01 PM Dec 8th 2010
Arthur and Ariadne share one kiss that is essentially a one-off gag. That does not constitute "relationship".
07:01:57 PM Dec 8th 2010
No, but it does provide evidence as to their sexuality. Arthur is at least bisexual and possibly heterosexual, and based on Ariadne's facial expression afterward, she's the same. It's only relevant to the claim that none of the other characters exhibit sexual behavior. They do.
07:34:30 PM Dec 8th 2010
The only expression I saw on Ariadne's face was bewilderment. That doesn't speak anything about her personal sexuality.
11:53:39 AM Dec 9th 2010
edited by loracarol
We saw different things in her face, then, because I saw a range of emotions. Doesn't really matter. I was just pointing out that it's not fair to say none of the other main characters show sexual behavior and everyone in the film "could be" gay. I count three (Cobb, Mal and Arthur) who show romantic interest in the opposite sex and a disputed fourth (Ariadne) who I interpreted as the same. Plus Michael Caine's character is married to a woman.

I think this is getting off topic from Eames' Ambiguously Gayness.
04:34:00 AM Dec 10th 2010
Let me clarify — the "everyone could be gay" was a blase notion that I didn't think any of the characters (beyond Cobb and Mal) showed a romantic preference. I wasn't saying "maybe they're all gay" just that it doesn't affect any of the characters (beyond Cobb and Mal) to even have a preference.

As for the Arthur/Ariadne moment - I admit it slipped my mind at the time of posting, though (to me) it also seems pretty clear that Arthur was a) seeing how the projections would react and b) trying to divert their attention. The practicality he shows in the rest of the film doesn't suggest he would just randomly pick a moment to steal a kiss whilst in the middle of a very intense job.

But as for Eames, I still believe he's just a sarcastic prankster. I think if he were an American character, people would see his supposed ambiguous sexuality as just being an overgrown frat boy, but the British accent adds a certain je ne sais quoi to it that makes people go "oh he must mean that 'darling' genuinely." I think having him listed as Ambiguosuly Gay is unfairly pigeon-holing a fleshed out character.
04:56:45 AM Dec 10th 2010
Again, Ambiguously Gay is not a character trait. It does not make him gay.

It only acknowledges that he did a few things which can be construed as gay under loose context. That is all.
01:49:38 AM Dec 13th 2010
Okay. Persuaded. :-)
08:44:32 AM Nov 26th 2010
09:00:28 AM Nov 26th 2010
Wow. Directly insulting a troper. This'll end Well.
10:15:19 AM Nov 26th 2010
edited by beeftony
The reason for the deletion, which I already provided, is because the film itself is not an Affectionate Parody, so that trope doesn't go on this page. Also, this is not the place for speculation. We have forums for that, so please put it there.

That said, I do think that the Inception game would work well as a series of dream worlds in the same vein as Psychonauts. Since dream building is an established part of the universe, it would be a lot of fun if the game let you plan for a job by constructing the levels yourself, or at least included a mapbuilding feature in multiplayer. But like I said, the main page is not the place for such speculation.
11:48:37 AM Nov 26th 2010
I don't see the problem with listing a (natter-free) reference to this on the Inception page - where else is it going to go? It's possible there's a more appropriate trope to list int under though. Fan Vid?
09:50:46 PM Nov 26th 2010
Fan Vid isn't really a trope, though. It's inherently tied to audience reaction, not storytelling devices that occur within the work itself. That's what's wrong with the original example, too. We have forums for that kind of thing.
08:17:42 AM Nov 13th 2010
  • Jossed: If Sir Michael Caine is to be believed, any fan theory which assumes that everything wasn't real. Caine states that any scene which he's in is the real world.

Edit War going on here. This seems like a legitimate comment to me, but beeftony seems to think it's Natter. It's not, of course - Natter is Conversation in the Main Page - and at any rate Jossed is a trope about "stuff people have said", so assuming he did make the comment it's unquestionably an example.
04:39:05 PM Nov 13th 2010
It also falls under Repair, Don't Respond. Contradicting an example by adding another one under it is considered bad form, which is where the Natter part comes in. If you feel the example in question is incorrect, then edit or delete the example itself. Don't add a contradictory one underneath it.
06:11:35 PM Nov 13th 2010
But this isn't that type of response. This isn't about an answer being "wrong", but there being an alternate explanation.

Also, that doesn't justify getting rid of "Jossed" wholesale.
09:41:08 PM Nov 13th 2010
edited by beeftony
The problem is that, instead of working it into the original example, you're putting a counterpoint below it and making it look like the article is arguing with itself. That should not happen, as both of the pages I linked to clearly state.

I also don't think Michael Caine qualifies as a reputable source on what happened given that he's only in two scenes and had zero creative control over the film. He just has an unfortunate habit of running his mouth on things like this and people ascribe far too much weight to his opinions. Because of these factors, Jossed doesn't apply. Even if Nolan himself were to come out and say it, it still wouldn't. Why? Because we already have a trope for that: Word of God. Jossed only describes situations in which the actual events of a work's canon contradict fan theory. That isn't the case here, so you shouldn't be throwing it around like this.

That clear enough?
10:04:51 PM Nov 13th 2010
No. Jossed clearly says that Word of God is one of the factors that constitutes its use as a trope. Therefore, the two are not mutually exclusive, as you are implying.

Also, Caine's word on the ending has not been discredited by Nolan, or any member of the creative staff. He obviously had more interaction with the creative team than any of us here on the wiki had, so unless his word is broken by a more credible source, that doesn't erase what he said.
10:45:55 AM Nov 14th 2010
edited by beeftony
Just because it hasn't been contradicted doesn't mean it's right. And like you said, it's only one of the factors. Jossed requires the actual canon to contradict the theory, otherwise it's just Word of God. Jossed was originally called Disproven By Canon, in fact.

Look, I don't care if you want to add this back in. But at least make it part of the original example and quit making it look like the wiki's arguing with itself.
11:01:39 AM Nov 14th 2010
edited by johnnye
The point of this discussion is to STOP the Edit War until there's a consensus about what to do.

What "original example"? You seem convinced this is a response to another example, whereas it's actually a response to a commonly-held Epileptic Tree. In fact, your latest edit suggests you think it's a response to It's the Journey That Counts, which doesn't make any sense to me at all...

Finally, the unambiguous first sentence of Jossed: "A fan gets Jossed when the elaborate Epileptic Trees or Fanfic that they've lovingly built upon canonical elements is abruptly disproved by further canon or by the Word Of God."
11:09:57 AM Nov 14th 2010
...That's my mistake. I totally thought it was, which is why it made no sense to me either.Still, it makes even less sense not to specify what exactly is being Jossed. Which of the fan theories is being disproven? It sounded enough like a response to something that I mistook it for one, so maybe we need to rewrite the example again.

And I still don't think Michael Caine qualifies as Word of God. He's too far removed from the creative process to really be a reputable source, as this business with The Dark Knight Rises proves (he said the villain would be the Riddler, Nolan says it won't). Word of God is usually reserved for the creator themselves, which Caine is not. I have great respect for the man, but people need to stop giving his opinions on things like this so much weight.
11:44:09 AM Nov 14th 2010
That's a logical fallacy. Because Caine has been wrong in the past does not make him wrong now. It's not up to me to prove what he said to be wrong; it's up to you to disprove what he said. Furthermore, his comment was largely about his own character "anywhere my character appears is the real world", not the entire story at large. Actors are often used as credible creative sources when it comes to information about their OWN characters. It just so happens in this case that his character has a narrative purpose.

I'd love to get a third opinion on the subject, though, so that this Edit War doesn't have to go back and forth.
12:50:39 PM Nov 14th 2010
edited by johnnye
@beeftony: "Which of the fan theories is being disproven?" - As the example says, "any fan theory which assumes that everything wasn't real" - i.e. that the supposed in-universe "real world" is just another level of dreaming. This is why it's better to discuss these things, rather than have endless repeated reversions over a misunderstanding.

@King Zeal, you have a third opinion, I've already agreed that Michael Caine counts as Word of God, at least regarding his own characterisation - he's only commenting on "scene's he appears in".
05:14:22 PM Nov 4th 2010
The Tear Jerker page shot me a content warning indicating that said page had been reported, even though (at least insofar as a look-see at the Edit History reveals) I just created it from scratch, and it did not exist previously. Was there a previous page that got taken down, or is this a database error, or something else?
05:18:16 PM Nov 4th 2010
The "page has been reported" thing has been popping up on new pages, but it goes away on its own after a while.
10:01:13 AM Oct 7th 2010
Can Saito's fate be described as a case of Fridge Horror? I mean. Assuming that everything happening in the end is real (i.e. Cobb's totem falls), Saito would still have been rescued by using the exact same words which led Mal Cobb to suicide. It would be, therefore, implied that Saito will sooner or later question his -own- sanity and kill himself. We might add that to the Driven to Suicide entry, currently featuring only Mal.
12:06:22 AM Dec 27th 2010
Nah. The thing that did Mal in was Cobb breaking into her most secret place, where she kept her totem top (implying that she chose to believe Limbo was the real reality) and setting it to spin infinitely inside the safe. He changed the secret from "this is real" to "this is not real," which lingered after they woke up and was the cause of her insanity and thoughts of suicide.
05:45:57 PM Sep 3rd 2010
Is the fact that the GI Joe movie and Inception both feature very large trains colliding into cars a Shout Out, a weird variation on Hey It's That Guy (the Joseph Gordon-Levitt link), or a random coincidence that should be left off the main page but turned into a WMG?
06:04:56 PM Sep 3rd 2010
I'd say coincidence.
07:54:52 PM Sep 3rd 2010
Sweet, thanks.
08:48:20 PM Aug 27th 2010
"it seemed prudent" should be changed to "it seemed neater."
09:23:18 PM Aug 27th 2010
Change it.
12:13:22 AM Aug 28th 2010
edited by beeftony
Maybe Mal won't let him.

J/K, it's done.
10:52:36 PM Aug 22nd 2010
Anyone else thought this would make an awesome tabletop rpg?
07:51:35 AM Aug 23rd 2010
You'd need a set of infinitely nested Penrose tables :D
07:00:11 PM Aug 23rd 2010
With one player getting left behind at each level who gets a turn every 20th of everyone else's? I like it...
07:35:16 PM Aug 23rd 2010
Please take this to the forum. Sorry.
06:11:25 PM Aug 22nd 2010
I'm not sure what trope to file this under, but as I see it the ending is absolutely the real world.

The audience doubts that it is because that's the same idea that was planted in our minds, in the same way as happened to Mal.
06:47:09 PM Aug 22nd 2010
Sounds like WMG to me.
06:57:10 PM Aug 22nd 2010
Okies :)
06:15:33 PM Aug 19th 2010
edited by LoveMachine
I'm trying to add You Cannot Kill An Idea, but the more I read the rest of the page, the more I realize I'd rather modify a lot of things along with it:

It's why Cobb's first inception goes horribly right.

Which is the reason Mal is Driven to Suicide with a vengeance.

And therefore it's an integral part of The Reveal.

Yet none of those examples actually spoil any of this. Instead, I feel the need to explain how exactly all these tropes fit together, but in the Spoiler Policy page it's stated that no matter how much of the text you hide, it must still be useful as an example. I believe I cannot do that without fully spoiling (and therefore tagging) the reveal.

So, any ideas on what needs to be told and what doesn't? I'm not yet confident as a trope editor, and I want/need to understand what I'm doing and why, especially if it gets cut.
06:57:39 PM Aug 19th 2010
edited by FastEddie
Sounds like you want to do some Analysis. Have at the Analysis.Inception page.
07:25:04 PM Aug 19th 2010
What? damn... again? I mean, Yay!! I DO want to analyze everything... but it still surprises me everytime I'm told. Oh, well.

So no spoilers if they don't add anything to why the trope is there, right? *sigh* it still feels like something I shouldn't do without relating the tropes to each other, but hey, it can be done. And the edit button is always there. I'm just obsessed with not writing something that immediately needs to be edited/cut.
08:32:32 PM Aug 6th 2010
  • Serious Business: Cobb's mentor invented PASIV technology, Cobb is one of its pioneers, yet there is enough of a demand for the service to justify not only a black market in the technology but also the development of defensive training.
    • Though it might be justified by the sheer potency of the technology; a well-executed "extraction" means that even the source of the information isn't aware that he's leaked it.
    • However, Mal attempts to convince Cobb that his adventurous life of running from the authorities and shadowy corporations while making loads of money performing such an unlikely service as dream espionage is A Glitch in the Matrix.

Does it really qualify for Serious Business? Judging by Ariadne's reaction to the technology, PASIV is only a fringe, underground phenomenon in the world of Inception.

It really does seem to be an important technology - if such a thing existed in the real world, it would be seen as very important, and it could change the world in one generation. Just look at the rapid spread and impressive impact of the Internet.

So it doesn't qualify for the first variation on Serious Business. It's not a trivial matter at all. It's not a children's card game.

The second variation of Serious Business is: "The characters take this trivial matter that seriously because it has real consequences. Lives, or the fate of the world, turn on this activity. Which, of course, hands the Idiot Ball to someone else: who on Earth thought it was a good idea to set things up so the fate of the world rests on a game?"

The power of idea-stealing really does justify the seriousness of the situation, so the second variety of Serious Business doesn't come into play either.

As for the zig-zagging entry, it just seems like you're trying to shoe horn in that paragraph. The weirdness of the premise doesn't make it a case of serious business.
12:05:24 AM Aug 7th 2010
There's absolutely no reason this counts as Serious Business; the entire point behind extraction is it allows you to perform industrial, military, political, or scientific espionage, which is as dead-serious as things get in the real-world. Unless we're going to consider espionage itself a trivial game, there's no way this counts.
09:12:54 AM Aug 6th 2010
Did no one get a feeling of Narm? I seriously thought so when Leonardo went, "JESUS CHRIST!!! OH NOOOOOO!" when his wife jumped. At the same time though, I was the only one laughing in the theater...
10:47:25 AM Aug 6th 2010
I didn't find it to be narm. If you were the only one laughing in the theatre, it may just be you. Narm is subjective, of course, but maybe we should reserve it for things that would get a whole theatre chuckling. The notoriously bad things that people frequently comment on. Like the Dark Knight Batman voice or that ghastly slide whistle from The Man with the Golden Gun.
12:02:19 AM Aug 6th 2010
Could we add Arthur in his waistcoat on the ceiling for the Waiscoatof Style page? I mean, once we get a picture?
06:43:39 AM Aug 4th 2010
Did anyone else sense a Crowning Momentof Heartwarming when Cobb's kids turned around at the end, or was it just me?
02:02:19 PM Aug 4th 2010
I'm pretty sure nobody dares to list it because the last shot of the film pretty much pulled the floor from under that scene in every way possible.
08:18:58 AM Jul 30th 2010
Did some edits and the only one I really wrestled with was taking the YMMV pothole out of the Fate Worse Than Death of Limbo. In the end I did it because, good God, you are stuck there, entirely alone, in a place where a real time minute is thousands of years. You might be stuck there for 30 minutes until your kick hits... or you might miss the kick and be stuck there for HOURS until your sedative runs out. That's an effective eternity all by yourself. Regarding that as not that bad — I couldn't buy it. Either somebody wasn't thinking it through or they're very terribly broken, I don't know.

Am I wrong on that? Can somebody point out the good? People go crazy from weeks or even days of isolation, and we're talking millenia.
04:18:50 PM Jul 30th 2010
Well, there is one point in the movie (at Yusuf's workshop?) when somebody asks why'd you want to be stuck in a dream for that long and someone else replies "Depends on the dream."

Dom and Mal were also stuck in Limbo for 50 years and they both loved it. Mal so much she chose to forget it wasn't real. Dom didn't try to get them out of it until they were both old and decrepit.

When Saito was stuck in Limbo, he didn't know he was by himself. He thought the projections were real. That doesn't seem that terrifying.
02:18:39 PM Aug 4th 2010
You aren't sure it's a dream, so the only way it differs from real life is a nagging sense of paranoia. Or if you do realise it's a dream, you could spend the time learning to manipulate it. You get decades of life in that world, and then you get a second chance at life when you do finally wake up. Not ideal, perhaps, but hardly a Fate Worse Than Death and arguably has some upsides.
07:39:39 AM Aug 23rd 2010
Go read the short story "The Jaunt" by Stephen King, or just read the summary on wikipedia

similar thing, scrambled brains.
09:31:43 PM Jul 28th 2010
I was looking through the history and saw that this line had been removed:

  • Ariadne, played by Ellen Page, is of indeterminate nationality, but common sense implies she should be French; however, her accent is anything but. Fan Wank suggests Ariadne is from Quebec, so she is fluent in both languages (moreover, this viewpoints helps avert Fake Nationality).

The person who removed it said:

"I'm not saying this is wrong, I'm just unsure why she would be French? her being Quebecois is plausible, though."

I'm guessing that the original poster was getting the "Ariadne is French" thing from the fact that she is going to school in France. Is this okay to put back up? (I didn't want to start an edit war, so I brought it here first.)
09:43:20 PM Jul 28th 2010
Makes sense to me. Maybe edit the description to explain why she should have a French accent. I don't think we need the Fan Wank explanation.
09:43:31 PM Jul 28th 2010
edited by MatthewTheRaven
It's just that her nationality is so ambiguous that it's not worth bringing into the conversation. It doesn't help that the great universities of Europe, just like major American universities, attract a lot of international students. She could be French, but her anglophone accent (Non-regional Canadian or General/Midwestern American) is so flawless that you can infer it's a first language, especially since she never uses French, even under times of intense stress or when talking to an obviously French Mal.
12:40:40 AM Jul 29th 2010
A bit late here - I removed the line originally. It really cant be a case of not bothering with the accent because there's no reason to believe Ariadne, an obvious audience viewpoint character, doesn't have a North American Background.
08:44:53 PM Jul 29th 2010
Alright, maybe something along the lines of:

ĽAriadne is of indeterminate nationality, but the fact that she is attending a school in Paris hints that she might be French; however, her accent is anything but. Ellen Page is from Nova Scotia, so she is most likely fluent in both languages (moreover, this probably helps avert Fake Nationality).
09:01:51 PM Jul 29th 2010
Are you confusing Nova Scotia with New Brunswick, Canada's most bilingual province? NS doesn't have much of a Francophone population.
12:44:14 AM Jul 30th 2010
the fact that she is attending a school in Paris hints that she might be French;

No, not really. She was recommended by Michael Caine, playing his English self in this movie, and has a classical Greek name. This is more consistent with a brilliant North American graduate student than anything else. To not be bothering with the accent there would have to be something substantive for her to not be bothering with, so being anything other than ambiguously American does not seem to be the intention - especially since, as I pointed out earlier, she's the audience viewpoint character.
09:41:51 PM Jul 30th 2010
Okay, then. Let's just leave it out then. (And yes, I probably did confuse the two. Sorry! Just ignore me, I'm a stupid American!)
04:45:54 PM Jul 25th 2010
May I please ask why the "Yo, dawg" Memetic Mutation was deleted? I didn't put it there but I found it endlessly amusing when I saw it earlier.
05:18:19 PM Jul 25th 2010
edited by Hadri
06:47:17 PM Jul 25th 2010
Fun certainly allowed. As long is not another brain dead meme puked up over and over and over and over ...
06:58:25 PM Jul 25th 2010
So Memetic Mutation really is banned from the main page?
07:02:04 PM Jul 25th 2010
edited by Hadri
You know, I dislike overused memes as much as the next person, but I think in this case it's a relevant twist on the film's material. I think that justifies it's inclusion somehwere
07:16:54 PM Jul 25th 2010
Nothing dates a page like a burned out meme. These pages are going to be here for years. Might as well delete the deadwood as early as possible.
07:43:32 PM Jul 25th 2010
Well, sorry then. I have a simple, often silly sense of humor so the meme still made me laugh. Carry on.
03:24:28 AM Aug 1st 2010
That particular meme has pretty much been revitalised with this, though. It's gone from being a stupid, Dead Horse Meme to being somewhat relevant again, just because of Inception. I think it definitely deserves inclusion.
05:13:48 PM Jul 23rd 2010
Fridge Logic anyone?

First and foremost, and this is the biggest one, but why is it that the way you get out of limbo is by killing yourself? Doesn't that kind of entirely defeat the purpose? You die, you go to limbo, then you commit suicide, and then you pop back to life like nothing happened. Why is limbo a threat, exactly? Cobb also knew this was how you get out, and it's not like he couldn't have told anyone. He certainly could have told Satio

Second, why did Satio become old? He was the last one to enter limbo, so he was there the least amount of time. For some reason, though, Cobb clearly hadn't aged a day.

Finally, and this one is sort of just a nit-pick, but why are limbo and the fourth stage of dreaming the same place?
06:29:18 PM Jul 23rd 2010
Take it to Headscratchers.
06:36:33 PM Jul 23rd 2010
edited by MatthewTheRaven
The danger of limbo is that you forget yourself in a mass of unstructured dream space, losing track of time and losing any sense of place. Saito probably knew the rules, but simply forgot them upon entering.

Or possibly suicide wouldn't work in limbo without the Kick System (which is how Ariadne and Fischer got out of the Fourth Layer) and with multiple dream layers above it (perhaps Dom and Saito needed layers 1-3 collapsed before they could kick back up.)

Dom didn't age like Saito did because he can handle Limbo better than anyone due to his experiments with Mal. They actually did grow old together, which is how Dom was able to maintain his appearance - he'd been through this before. Saito had no such experience, so his image of himself aged.

And I assumed that Ariadne and Dom created the Fourth Dream level inside of Limbo, giving it structure. Once they carved out a structured place Dom's subconscious filled his and Mal's old haunts with Mal, and Mal's captive Fischer.

From his "Fourth Level base," Dom was able to explore the rest of Limbo because he had a sort of reality anchor. Roads to walk down and such, and a Japanese castle to fill with Saito (remember, Dom was the architect of the fourth dream level, not Ariadne).

I interpreted his discovery of Saito like this: They are both lost in an ocean of primal chaos. Dom had enough power to conjure up a boat. Saito is floundering, drowning in the chaos. Dom, by building the Japanese castle that matched the one in the opening scene of the film, throws a life-preserver at Saito, giving him something to keep stable in. After Saito gains a foothold, all Dom has to do is row over to him and pick him up.
06:47:42 PM Jul 23rd 2010
Yep. Definitely should have taken it to Headscratchers.
10:12:15 AM Jul 24th 2010
yeah i did. My bad
08:12:30 PM Jul 22nd 2010
edited by Ferrard
Was anyone else struck by the remarkable similarities between Inception and William Gibson's Neuromancer? I kept seeing shout-outs everywhere, from Cobb's vision of Limbo starting at an endless beach, to having to synchronize "kicks" between different dream-levels, to the employer getting iced in the middle of the job... the entire presumption of a low-tech Cyberpunk world (inter-corporate intrigue, corporate goons chasing after Cobb) and the questioning of reality in the face of technology. It all seems to point in that direction.
07:05:10 PM Jul 21st 2010
Does Eames really count as Ambiguously Gay? Granted, I wasn't watching the movie with my Slash Goggles on, but the only thing I can see people basing this on is when he called Arthur "darling," (while more or less making fun of him), and declaring him Ambiguously Gay based on solely that just seems... silly.
07:35:17 PM Jul 21st 2010
Any subtext at all shouldn't qualify a character as ambiguously gay, but thats just like, you know, my opinion.
10:58:10 AM Jul 22nd 2010
It might have been more the fact that he disguised himself as an, ahem, well-endowed blonde. And then propositioned Saito disguised as the same.
04:39:02 PM Jul 22nd 2010
It seems more like Gay Bravado in that case, as he disguised himself as a woman to get Fischer's attention. And the darling bit is really one of those "I'm not gay, I'm British" things.
06:02:07 PM Jul 22nd 2010
I added the example. I rarely, if ever, watch movies with Shipping Goggles on. Everyone I've talked to since watching the film - mind you, my friends typically aren't looking to read such things into characters either - agrees that Eames was pretty Ambiguously Gay.
06:58:38 PM Jul 24th 2010
Eames enjoys mildly harassing Arthur, which can come off as flirtation. He calls Arthur "darling", which may be a British mannerism but it's blatant in contrast to his other mannerisms. He flirts with Saito in the elevator. And then there's the phallic implications of "my gun's bigger than yours", which could be flirtation or competition.

It's ambiguous but it's there, and I wasn't wearing Shipping Goggles either.
02:36:32 PM Aug 4th 2010
edited by johnnye
Hmm... I'm usually hesistant about this trope, as it often seems like a tug-of-war between Yaoi Fangirls and the "Liberace was just flamboyant" Armored Closet Gay brigade. In this case, I'd probably argue he's just a product of a British public school, and thus perfectly happy to camp it up and crossdress without it meaning anything, but I suppose "ambiguous" is fair enough. And "don't be afraid to dream a little bigger, darling" is just condescension, like saying "Yes, dear" to someone nagging you.

Reminds me of a hilarious line in the classic heist movie The League of Gentlemen though;
Man 1: Can you lay off that sickening "my old darling" nonsense?
Man 2: Oh, sorry, my o- uh, Colonel. One gets into terrible habits at the YMCA.
11:23:39 PM Aug 4th 2010
I don't know, saying "He's not gay, he's just British or something!" seems rather silly (not to mention a little unfortunate), especially when you take The Law of Conservation of Detail into account. I could have read it more as Gay Bravado if he'd acted like that with every character; as it was, there was that one scene with Saito, and a great many with Arthur, during which it came across as pigtail-pulling. A great deal of Ho Yay was had, and it looked very intentional.

I'm not saying "OMG he's totally gay you guys!1!!" I just think there's more than enough evidence to support an Ambiguously Gay verdict, so I don't see why it's a big deal.
10:23:48 AM Aug 5th 2010
Speaking as a British person, there is a definite trope of "public schoolboy (that is, posh private school) who runneth over with Gay Bravado and is never hesitant to engage in Wholesome Crossdressing". In America it tends to get Flanderized to all British people, that's all.
10:34:57 AM Aug 5th 2010
edited by MatthewTheRaven
The Americans want their Ho Yay. Anyone who tries to point out cultural nuance is a homophobe. Let it rest.
12:36:46 AM Aug 6th 2010
Um, thanks, Passive Aggressive Man. For the record, not American, and lived in the North of England for four years. Still think Ambiguously Gay isn't stretching it.
03:09:52 PM Aug 13th 2010
Also not American, and I was the one who originally made the Ambiguously Gay edit with regard to Eames. It's not just the language he uses or the (possible) flirting with Arthur. As a character, he fits the trope as defined in the trope page. Mannerisms, flirting, etc. It's just part of his character, and he's no less Bad Ass because of it.
03:46:37 PM Jul 19th 2010
Five-Man Band

What's the issue here? It fits just fine. What is "like most movies" not fitting supposed to mean?
04:05:28 PM Jul 19th 2010
Mostly I don't understand why some tropers believe that any show or film with a five- or six- ensemble team deserves a Five-Man Band example. The Five-Man Band page for Live Action TV, for instance, makes me weep at how inaccurate and shoehorned some examples can be.

For Inception in particular I don't think any of the characters fit the Five-Man Band examples at all. Saito works as a Sixth Ranger, I suppose, but that's a related trope.

The Five-Man Band page, which I believe was locked by yourself because of trope decay problems, cautions against justifying additional team members just because a few of them may fit the archetype. It does a disservice to Inception's characters to shoehorn them in this way when they do not fit these archetypes. That alone seems reason enough to me to leave the example out. Describing them in Five Manband terms does not tell a potential reader anything about their characters in the actual film.

I can give a point by point analysis if that's really necessary, just not at this moment.
04:09:04 PM Jul 19th 2010
edited by Jordan
Looking at the Five-Man Band page. The Inception cast are a really good fit- Arthur is the classic "snarky Lancer" to Dom. The Smart Guy is mentioned as sometimes being a younger teammate, and that applies to Ariadne. And Eames has some of the combat skills of a Big Guy, and the personality.

Could you explain why you don't think they fit?
05:16:36 PM Jul 19th 2010
edited by Hadri
From Five-Man Band main:

The individual character types exist outside of the band. The Five Man Band only occurs when the team as a whole fits, not just a few characters.

They are not a good fit because Five-Man Band describes a fairly common team dynamic. Some Tropers have taken this to mean every team consists of these archetypes. When applied to the Inception team, however, it breaks down, because the team was not written to represent this dynamic.

  • Eames is not The Big Guy. A character is not The Big Guy in a Five-Man Band just because they're a male character with combat skills. For that matter, Eames is not better at combat in the Dreamscape than anyone else. He specializes in impersonations; that's why he's on the team.

  • Yusuf is a Smart Guy, but he doesn't spend most of the film doing smart guy things. He spends most of it driving a van. He also isn't smarter than the rest of the team, again, only more specialized.

  • Ariadne is not The Chick just because she is the Token Girl, another common mistake in Five-Man Band examples. She carries her own weight; she is on the team because Dom needs her to do things he can't. She is not The Smart Guy for the same reasons Yusuf isn't. She has her moment as The Heart, but that doesn't make her The Chick by itself either.

Now that I've de-justified these three I feel I've more than made my point. Inception presents a more complicated team than Five-Man Band was written to explain. Again, a reader of this example will not accurately understand the tropes these characters represent if we shoehorn them into Five-Man Band tropes.

Therefore, if we are to keep the example I suggest we play with it and use the team job descriptions that were provided in the film's promotional material. I suggest it follow this form:

with potholes to the requisite character tropes, which I havent had time to research yet. It's more accurate and it's relevant to the film in question, which is more than I can say for a majority of Five-Man Band examples.
03:20:11 AM Aug 1st 2010
Don't forget Mal, The Shade.
04:53:56 PM Jul 18th 2010
edited by artdecades
Is 20 Minutes into the Future accurate? Only the people involved in the business and those who are protected against it seem to know. Ariadne was the everyday person (who was a genius), and she wasn't familiar with this technology.
04:57:47 PM Jul 18th 2010 only felt like this trope because we, as the audience, were learning it step-by-step as well. But that doesn't mean that the public within the universe are just as aware.
05:24:55 PM Jul 18th 2010
I disagree with the wording of the example, although the trope itself is accurate in my opinion, if you were wondering that.
06:49:38 AM Jul 18th 2010
Is What Happened to the Mouse? necessary? Saito says that while he won't do anything to Nash, Kobol is less likely to be forgiving of the failed mission. Considering that the goons going after Cobb in Mumbasa are shooting at him, there's a pretty good bet Nash wasn't meant to survive.
01:11:26 PM Jul 18th 2010
Agreed. It would have been this trope had Saito not mentioned that. But since he did, the audience can reasonably assume that Nash was eventually assassinated. I say delete it.
02:19:27 AM Jul 18th 2010
Why is there no mention of the van in this entire article? The random cuts to everyone dangling about in slow motion on the van as it flew into the water was hilarious...
11:17:30 AM Jul 18th 2010
Because no one eles found it funny?
06:55:42 AM Jul 19th 2010
I found it funny.
01:48:06 PM Jul 19th 2010
It was pretty funny, and I think intentionally so, as it relieved the tension going on in the lower levels. As one writer on the Simpsons said, "there's something so funny about bad things happening to unconscious people." And Ellen Page was one of the crew, so there's the added humor of tiny people getting thrown around, the entire basis of dwarf tossing.
08:10:17 AM Jul 20th 2010
I found it hilarious too.
07:17:41 PM Jul 25th 2010
Yeah, it was pretty silly. They looked like they were doing some sort of synchronized interpretive dance...
02:10:42 AM Jul 18th 2010
Can we really have an Ensemble Darkhorse listing that lists over half the main cast? And, honestly, it's between Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Tom Hardy. :)
04:22:56 AM Jul 18th 2010
edited by MatthewTheRaven
We should lay off the Ensemble Darkhorse trope for a bit. The film's too recent, and we need a fandom to really crystallize around the film before we can declare a character a dark horse... And if every character but Dom is in the running for dark horse, is there really a dark horse, or just a badass derby?
09:10:49 AM Jul 20th 2010
Going ahead and deleting it for now...
11:25:58 PM Jul 30th 2010
edited by mek4life
Tom Hardy / Eames seems already gathered quite a spotlight from the critics; compared with other A-listers in this movie (Di Caprio, Gordon-Levitt, Ellen Page, Watanabe, and Cillian Murphy) people certainly didn't expect much of Tom Hardy but he steals the gold medal of badassery and snarkiness in this movie. IMO he is certainly an Ensemble Darkhorse at this moment. Anyone?
11:46:19 PM Aug 1st 2010
I think that's fair- although I always did. Maybe give it a day or two, run it up the flagpole and see who salutes? (I love that phrase.)
12:53:29 PM Jul 17th 2010
Do people aged in the dreams?
01:57:55 AM Jul 18th 2010
In real life or in the story? In the story, judging by Saito, yes, at least in a psychological sense reflected by one's dream-avatar.
06:48:49 PM Jul 24th 2010
They age in appearance, both Saito and Mal & Cobb looked like elderly people after their time in Limbo. They age psychologically, as Cobb said Mal's transition was rough because "we were old souls returned to young bodies". I *think* you can die of old age in there, because Cobb told Saito if he was stuck in Limbo, his brains would be scrambled and there'd be nothing in there but white noise.
11:21:24 AM Jul 17th 2010
Why did someone delete the Fridge Horror about the length of time for Saito and Cobb in the bottom dream layer? If it's something I missed in the movie, fine, but I'd like to know.
09:00:13 AM Jul 20th 2010
I'm not the one who deleted it, but if I had to guess, I'd say it's because there's not so much "Fridge" about it, given all the dialogue about it.
07:35:09 AM Jul 17th 2010
edited by
I was reminded of VR 5 during this movie.

... and Synecdoche New York and Dark City.

And seriously, I yelled out "Solaris" after the final scene:).
09:34:40 PM Jul 16th 2010
I don't think the Astonishingly Appropriate Appearance entry fits the trope at all- the Trope is about character design, not just wearing the right outfit for the setting. Pluss, they're going mentally into dreams- there's no reason they wouldn't look right for the setting (that may be a subset of the architect's job, although it's not stated). Any objections to removing it?
02:05:13 AM Jul 18th 2010
48 hours and no objections- I'm deleting it.
11:33:19 AM Jul 13th 2010
Are we no longer putting Memetic Mutation entries on pages?
10:28:22 AM Jul 16th 2010
What meme would you have on the list?
03:56:45 PM Jul 16th 2010
There was something that someone posted under Memetic Mutation and Fast Eddie took it off (maybe once, maybe twice, I'm not sure). It was something about the distinctive electronic hum from the trailers, from the piece Mind Heist.
03:59:34 PM Jul 16th 2010
That thing with the repeated letters? Doesn't make any sense and looks like amateur-hour.
05:37:24 PM Jul 16th 2010
10:18:44 AM Jul 17th 2010
I did that. I'm sad it's gone. But I understand now why it isn't there.
11:19:07 AM Jul 18th 2010
Probably still doesn't count as a full meme, but pretty much any time there's comments on the Inception trailers, several will mention the "BRRRRRRRRMMM" noise featured throughout the trailers and the film itself.

Not enough to count, probably, but it's certainly something that did catch on with people.
11:29:35 AM Jul 18th 2010
But does it belong here?
11:43:35 PM Aug 1st 2010
Well, it's spawned a number of internet iterations, and (if it hasn't already) will certainly be a punchline on late-night talk-shows, and then other comedy shows, until we're all sick to fucking death of it.

And isn't that what Memetic Mutation is all about :)?
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