Christopher Nolan was already firmly entrenched as one of my favorite directors in recent memory, so I was excited when I first saw the trailers for Inception. An interesting original concept, a stellar cast, and Nolan at the helm could not possibly go wrong. I’m always cautious not to let my expectations get too high for fear of a let down, but the first reactions to the film have made me throw that rationale out the window. According to preliminary reports from essentially every media outlet that has done advanced reviews, Inception has the potential to be Nolan’s masterpiece.
The film has created so much buzz that I would not be shocked if it is the critical and box office hit of the year. That isn’t just great for Nolan’s career, but it could provide a much-needed adrenaline shot to Hollywood. In recent years, filmmakers have gotten stuck in the rut of remakes, reboots, sequels and adapted screenplays. I can’t even think of one legitimately great original screenplay I’ve seen so far this year. Being an aspiring screenwriter myself, I have read several accounts of writers’ pet projects being rejected in favor of the aforementioned easy sellers. Inception could help studios see that an original creation still has the ability to generate money when done right, which hopefully will make them more willing to take chances on creative films.
I understand the allure of rebooting existing franchises or turning literature into films. There is already an inherited fan base for such films, guaranteeing sales and word of mouth. People are already lining up to see the new Predator movie simply because of its name. The same thing will happen with The Green Hornet, and lets not even talk about the hype surrounding the final Harry Potter movie. So from a business standpoint, I get the recent enfatuation with these kinds of projects, especially in a down economy. But creatively, Hollywood has been in a major funk for years, with very little new blood injected into the industry. One box office blast the size that Inception has the potential to make, however, might change all that. And here’s to hoping that it does.
If you want to view the trailer for Inception, it is below. The film opens next Friday, July 16.