Inception review – the virtual reinvention of virtual reality

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Science fiction and fantasy films

4 /
5 stars

4 out of 5 stars.

Christopher Nolan’s cerebro-tech thriller may be short on story, but makes up for it with staggering fantasy set pieces

Giant leaps… a scene from Chrisopher Nolan’s adored film Inception.
Photograph: Stephen Vaughan/Allstar/Warner Bros

With Christopher Nolan’s new film Tenet doomed to arrive like Achilles racing the tortoise in Zeno’s paradox, approaching and approaching, forever closing the gap but never quite here, it is an interesting time for his adored cerebro-tech thriller Inception to get a re-release on streaming platforms. It’s a measure of Nolan’s towering prestige that a film made a mere 10 years ago can be eligible for classic reassessment status, but there’s also something disconcerting about it.
Rightly or wrongly, Nolan fans and the industry generally had been encouraged to believe in Tenet as the morale-boosting new dawn for post-Covid theatrical life – the flagship for cinema as challenging, spectacular entertainment. So, inevitably, it looks as if Inception is somehow being offered as second best, or as a warmup act hustled hastily on stage to keep the audience quiet because the (similar) main event is still stuck in traffic miles away.

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