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Inception Blu-ray Review

  • Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
  • Video Codec: VC-1
  • Resolution: 1080p/24
  • Audio Codec: English DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1, French Dolby Digital 5.1, Portuguese Dolby Digital 5.1, Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1
  • Subtitles: English SDH, French, Portuguese, Spanish
  • Rating: PG-13
  • Region: ABC (Region-Free)
  • Discs: 3 (2 x Blu-ray + 1 x DVD + Digital Copy)
  • Studio: Warner Home Video
  • Blu-ray Release Date: December 7, 2010
  • List Price: $35.99

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BestBuy.com:
Inception - Widescreen AC3 Dolby

Purchase Inception on Blu-ray+DVD+Digital Copy Combo Pack at CD Universe

Shop for more Blu-ray titles at Amazon.com

Overall
[Rating:4.5/5]
The Film
[Rating:4/5]

Video Quality
[Rating:5/5]

Audio Quality
[Rating:5/5]

Supplemental Materials
[Rating:4/5]

Click thumbnails for high-resolution 1920X1080p screen captures

(Screen captures are lightly compressed with lossy JPEG  thus are meant as a general representation of the content and do not fully reveal the capabilities of the Blu-ray format)

The Film

[Rating:4/5]

The Dark Knight’s director Christopher Nolan crafts a stylish mindbender with this psychological thriller, Inception. Much lauded for its intelligence as a summer blockbuster, Inception is certainly weightier than your average summer fare, studying the thin line between reality and dreams.

The story focuses on a team of intellectual thieves who steal ideas from people’s thoughts by entering their dreams. The leader of the group is Cobb (Leonardo DiCaprio), a man who is teetering on the line of instability and insanity through issues involving his past and a growing lack of a grasp on reality. The group now has to do one of their most dangerous jobs ever, enter the dreams of billionaire executive Robert Fischer (Cillian Murphy) and plant a thought — what the group calls “inception.” — rather than steal one. Their Japanese client Saito (Ken Watanabe), a competitor of Fischer, demands this of them and, in return, he will help Cobb regain the life he once had. To complete the task, however, the team has to bring in a young new architecture student, Ariadne (Ellen Page) to help be the architect of the dreams they intend to weave inside Fischer’s mind, and to go many levels deeper into the dreamworld than they ever have before.  As Fischer’s subconscious turns on them in a militaristic fashion, things become intensely dangerous, and the lines of reality breakdown.

Nolan’s script successfully keeps the varying lines of the different dreamworlds and reality clear and his stylized, special effects-laden imagery magically captures the world of the subconscious without lapsing into clichés. He keeps it full of clean edits, quick cuts, and simple imagery. The plot twist at the end may or may not spoil the entire ride to get there, but it’s a trip worth taking nonetheless.

Video Quality

[Rating:5/5]

One would expect this visual stunner to show up on Blu-ray looking no less than perfect, and that it has. Filmed in various HD, 35mm and 70mm formats, the hi-res film with the primo visual effects is given a pristine 1080p/24 VC-1 encoding from Warner that is vivid, detailed, and artifact free. Black levels are inky, flesh tones look spot on, and there is no sign of macroblocking during the various explosions and other quick-paced action scenes.

Audio Quality

[Rating:5/5]

Just as engaging as the visuals is the DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 soundtrack. One couldn’t get more involved unless D-Box Motion Code was added for those equipped to handle such a thing. It isn’t, but the rollicking soundtrack will get your seat rumbling anyway with resounding low frequencies and sounds that pan through the entire room. Gunshots sound weighty, high frequencies are reserved, and dialogue is clean and clear.

Supplemental Materials

[Rating:4/5]

The 1080p supplements span two Blu-rays and include an excellent documentary on dreams that calls in experts in the field as well as some appearances from members of the cast and crew of Inception. Featurettes on the main disc can be accessed directly or through the in-movie “Extraction Mode.”

The supplements provided with this release are:

Disc 1:

  • Extraction Mode
  • Featurettes (1.78:1; 1080p/24):
    • The Inception of Inception (0:03.23)
    • The Japanese Castle: The Dream is Collapsing (0:03.32)
    • Disintegration of the Paris Café (0:03.09)
    • Constructing Paradoxical Architecture (0:02.30)
    • The Freight Train (0:03.04)
    • Ambush on the City Streets (0:02.54)
    • The Tilting Bar (0:02.17)
    • The Rotating Corridor (0:05.01)
    • Simulating Zero-G (0:01.36)
    • Limbo: The Design of Unconstructed Dream Space (0:03.44)
    • The Fortress Explosion (0:02.07)
    • The Music of Dreams (0:04.05)
    • The Dream-Share (0:03.43)
  • BD-Live

Disc 2 (Bonus Features only):

  • Behind the Story:
    • Dreams: Cinema of the Subconscious (1.78:1; 1080p/24; 0:44/29)
    • Inception: The Cobol Job (1.78:1; 1080p/24; 0:14.33) — Animated motion comic acts as a prequel to the film.
  • Project Somnacin: Confidential Files
  • 5.1 Inception Soundtrack
  • Extras:
    • Conceptual Art Gallery (1080p)
    • Promotional Art Archive (1080p)
    • Trailers & TV Spots:
    • Trailers:
    • Trailer 1 (Teaser)
    • Trailer 2
    • Trailer 3
    • TV Spots:
    • Characters (#39)
    • Back to Reality (#45)
    • Extractor (#50)
    • Point Man (#51)
    • Architect (#52)
    • Simple Idea (#25)
    • Change (#27)
    • The Dream is Real (#28)
    • The Beginning (#33)
    • Real (#38)
    • Bullet (#47)
      Wake Me Up (#49)
    • Ten Hours (#57)
  • BD-Live
  • DVD
  • Digital Copy

The Definitive Word

Overall:

[Rating:4.5/5]

Inception is a blockbuster that thinks for a change and it lays down some heavy amounts of action and special effects in the process. The Blu-ray release is superb eye and ear candy that offers up an exciting home theatre joyride.

Additional Screen Captures:

[amazon-product align=”right”]B002ZG981E[/amazon-product]

BestBuy.com:
Inception - Widescreen AC3 Dolby

Purchase Inception on Blu-ray+DVD+Digital Copy Combo Pack at CD Universe

Shop for more Blu-ray titles at Amazon.com

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