Up@dawn 2.0

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

H01 Midterm Group (Jeanette, Josh, and Austin) Jeanette's Part

My part in the group was spent analyzing the parallels between the movie Inception and the idea that the movie itself is a type of inception. Each member of Cobb’s team in the movie can be compared to a person in the moviemaking process; Cobb is the director. Arthur, who plans things and sets it into motion, is the producer. Saito would be considered the bankroller- he’s putting money in and stands to gain money from the heist. Ariadne designs the dream and could be compared to a screenwriter. Yusuf created the powerful sedative that will allow the team to delve down into so many layers of dreams: he provides special effects. Eames takes forms of other people in the target’s life, so we could consider him the actor. Fischer, the target, is the audience, the one the idea is trying to be incepted into.
Plato would have found this worrisome. Philosophers focus on ideas, where they come from, and the justifications of them. Could Inception, or any film in general, be planting an idea in our minds? After watching the film, are we more likely to pull off a heist? For this to be justified by Plato, there would have to be an instructive moral in the story. But, in the case of Inception, the protagonists are the ones committing the crime! We see them paying no price for their sin at the end, so Plato would find this very bad. Now, Plato may not worry that after watching it we will all go out and pull of an elaborate heist by forging our way into someone’s mind, but he may argue that it could influence us to invade the privacy of others.
We can compare Inception to Plato’s story of the cave by imagining ourselves as the cave dwellers. We are watching a film played to us on the screen and find ourselves getting caught up in and feeling true emotional feelings towards it. Plato believed that our world was already a smoke-screen to the true Forms that we should be paying attention to. Plato would say this is bad because we are drawing our attention away from the Forms and focusing on fairytales. Another problem Plato would see is that once the characters reach the deepness of the third level, they really aren’t there at all. It’s all just a perception in a mind. By delving deeper into these dream worlds, the characters are falling even farther away from the truth.

            Aristotle would counter this by saying: By watching the film, you’re getting to do these actions vicariously. So, by feeling the emotions and excitement of a heist film, you’re becoming less likely to actually go out and do it. Most people today fall somewhere in the middle of the extremes of Plato and Aristotle. We may feel that we are just being harmlessly entertained by a story such as this. But, it is always good to analyze the thoughts and words that enter our minds so we don’t let little ideas sneak into our subconscious.  

1 comment:

  1. “You're waiting for a train. A train that'll take you far away. You know where you hope this train will take you. But you can't know for sure. Yet it doesn't matter.”
    -Dom Cobb

    It’s the ultimate skeptic’s question: is this reality real? How can we know? This is the question posed to the audience of Inception, and unfortunately, isn’t really answered in the film. The movie leaves us pondering whether the reality we’ve accepted as reality is truly that and not just another dream we’ve forgotten to wake up from. Maybe the real question that needs asking is not is this the final reality, but does it even matter.
    Consider how we perceive reality: it’s all through how we see, hear, touch, smell – experience things. Our perception is the only way we can determine dream from not-dream, delusion or reality. Therefore, if we’re just coming to understand a dream reality as the final reality, then what’s stopping that from being any different from the supposed final reality. Inception ends off with Cobb finally seeing the faces of his two children, whom he has been refusing to see during his dream states as he fears he might accept that reality moreso than his own. Is he finally awake? Or has he just come to accept another dream level he’s forgotten is a dream. Later on in the film, Cobb finally confronts Mal and the promise he broke to her: that they would grow old together. Cobb’s realization? They did grow old together, in Limbo, in the space of five minutes in the real world. They lived full lives together, in love. That may not have been the reality, but it was a reality, and a reality where the two of them could be together is as good as any other reality.
    If Inception is right, maybe all this is just a dream – and if Inception is right again, then maybe it doesn’t matter, because the only difference between a dream and reality is if we’re the origin.