Inception parents guide

Inception Parent Guide

This film brings an interesting sophistication to the dream theme once the storyline begins to take shape, slowly revealing the motivations and subconscious fears of these compelling characters.

Overall B-

In this sci-fi thriller Leonardo DiCaprio plays Dom Cobb, a man skilled in the illegal and unethical practice of entering a person's dreams and stealing secrets from his or her subconscious. But when he is asked to commit "Inception" (the act of planting an idea into a sleeper's mind), the stakes become even higher for both the victim and the thief.

Release date July 16, 2010

Violence C
Sexual Content A
Profanity B-
Substance Use B

Why is Inception rated PG-13? The MPAA rated Inception PG-13 for sequences of violence and action throughout.

Run Time: 146 minutes

Official Movie Site

Parent Movie Review

Dreams can reveal a great deal about what we’re thinking - apparently, including corporate secrets. Using experimental technology and heavy sedatives, talented “extractors” can break in to dreams and find that information. Dominick Cobb (Leonardo DiCaprio) and Arthur (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) are some of the best in the business. But on a routine operation on Japanese business magnate, Saito (Ken Watanabe), Dom and Arthur find themselves exposed as Saito realizes that he is dreaming, and quickly have to go on the run. Saito catches up, and makes them an offer: to engage in a dangerous operation against corporate rival Robert Fischer (Cillian Murphy), or face death. Realizing that their options are poor, Dom and Arthur take the job. But this isn’t another extraction: Saito wants them to convince Fischer to break up his business empire - a technique called “inception”. Although Arthur believes it to be impossible, Dom has experience that tells him otherwise…

​Alternating smoothly between reality and dreams, Inception forces viewers to confront their assumptions about both. The brilliant cinematography by Wally Pfister and Hans Zimmer’s deep, ominous score lend the world a surprising clarity - a very definite atmosphere which is necessary to balance the occasional unreality of the plot. Against that dramatic background, Nolan takes a standard heist premise and punches it up with deep personal consequences for his characters. Add to that the all-star cast, and you have a recipe for success.

That said, Inception isn’t going to work for everyone. The special effects are hugely impressive, but may cause motion sickness for some viewers – definitely not the kind of movie I’d watch on a plane. The plot is also a likely cause for motion sickness (or at least disorientation), as it twists and turns around on itself throughout. This movie demands a certain amount of focus, without which the story quickly becomes fairly confusing. It’s worth the patience, though, with thought-provoking moments about morality and personal motivations.

As far as content concerns go, this film could have done a lot worse. The largest issue by a wide margin is violence, with frequent fistfights and shootouts, and more than a few large explosions. Thankfully, none of these are terribly graphic. For an action film, there is also remarkably little profanity, with almost every instance being either mild cursing or terms of deity. Combined with a complete absence of sexual content, this is a good option for teens and young adults, although too intense and confusing for younger viewers.

Between the thrilling action, the psychological curiosity, and the moral uncertainty, Inception has a little something for everyone – unless you get carsick easily. Even if thrillers aren’t necessarily your favourites, this film offers so much to think about and such brilliant visuals that it’s worth watching almost on that basis alone. And if that wasn’t enough to get you interested, it has Leonardo DiCaprio, Joseph Gordon Levitt, Tom Hardy, and Marion Cotillard. It’s hard to argue with a cast that good.

Directed by Christopher Nolan. Starring Leonardo DiCaprio, Ken Watanabe, Ellen Page. Running time: 146 minutes. Theatrical release July 16, 2010. Updated

Rating & Content Info

Why is Inception rated PG-13? Inception is rated PG-13 by the MPAA for sequences of violence and action throughout.

Violence: Explosions occur repeatedly on the street and in buildings, injuring or killing characters. A riot breaks out. Characters are threatened with weapons. Guns are frequently used and a man takes a bullet in his leg. Characters are also shot, crushed by falling objects or between cars, beaten, stabbed, chased, and nearly caught in an avalanche. A man is accused of murder. A character commits suicide and another threatens to shoot himself. Numerous dead bodies are shown. A vehicle breaks through the safety barrier on a bridge and plunges into the water below. Characters participate in lying, theft and gambling.

Sexual Content: A married couple kisses and embraces.

Language: The script includes over two-dozen profanities and terms of Deity.

Alcohol / Drug Use: Characters use a strong sedative to induce a state of deep sleep. Social drinking is shown at home and in a bar.

Page last updated

Inception Parents' Guide

How does Dom justify his reasons for exposing his team to so much danger in order to clear his own name? Would his motivations been less acceptable if the movie ended differently than it does? What are other situations in which many lives are risked for the sake of one?

If you were able, would you want to share a dream with someone else? What would be the benefits? What things might you discover about the other person?

Dom believes that an idea is a powerful, resilient parasite. What are some ideas that have changed the world?

Home Video

The most recent home video release of Inception movie is December 7, 2010. Here are some details…

Inceptionreleases on DVD and Blu-ray on December 7, 2010.

Inception on DVD includes:

Four Focus Points:

- The Inception of Inception: Christopher Nolan shapes his unusual concepts for Inception

- The Japanese Castle: The Dream Is Collapsing: Creating and destroying the castle set

- Constructing Paradoxical Architecture: Designing the staircase to nowhere

- The Freight Train: Constructing the street-faring freight train

Inception (Two-Disc Blu-ray/DVD Combo + Digital Copy) offers:

- Extraction Mode: In-movie experience with over 90 minutes of bonus content featuring director Christopher Nolan and Leonardo DiCaprio

- Dreams: Cinema of the Subconscious: Taking some of the most fascinating and cutting-edge dream research to-date on lucid dreaming, top scientists make the case that the dream world is not an altered state of consciousness, but a fully functional parallel reality

- Inception: The Cobol Job: Now in full animation and motion, check out this comic prologue to see how Cobb, Arthur, and Nash came to be enlisted by Cobol Engineering and perform an extraction on Saito

- Conceptual art gallery

- Promotional art archive

- Inception trailers

- Inception TV spots

- Via BD-Live: Project Somnacin—Confidential Files: Get access to the highly secure files that reveal the inception of the dream-share technology

Related home video titles:

Inception actors Ken Watababe, Michael Caine and Cillian Murphy starred under Christopher Nolan’s direction in the Batman Begins movie. Nolan, Caine and Murphy went on to work together in The Dark Knight. Murphy also plays an assassin who kidnaps a hotel manager in midflight in the thriller Red Eye.