Dream Hooey: Inception Island, or a Contrarian’s View of “Inception” and “Shutter Island”

So none other than knockout writer Susan Orlean (whose book on Rin Tin Tin is coming out soon, I believe) turned me on to the world of streaming video last fall, telling me that she finds that much better than any satellite/cable TV in her home in upstate New York. Laggard that I am, I’ve just recently picked up my Apple TV. It’s so small and minimal it’s freaky—a little black box about the size of a deck of cards, a remote with essentially three buttons on it. But connected to Netflix streaming video, it’s kind of amazing. Gone are the days of same-old movies on DirecTV! Gone are the day so seeing He’s Just Not That Into You and Lady Gaga’s latest fashion show/concert listed in maddening, multiple timeslots! Variety is here!
So two of the movies I watched (which are not on DirecTV yet) both featured Leo DiCaprio, and I chose these two to catch up on what my students were talking about, generally expressing how much they loved them: Inception and Shutter Island. Inception is great eye candy, but it didn’t add up to much, and I lost interest in all the dream hooey as it went on and on. Shutter Island, on the other hand, had a healthy dose of dream hooey, or alternate reality, and I thought it really paid off. The final line DiCaprio says rings out as a real kicker, like the final line Charlize Theron utters in Monster.

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