Inception is a stunningly good movie. Written and rewritten over the course of the last 10 years, this has been Christopher Nolan’s pet project since before he worked on either of the Batman movies. Finally getting the support to afford a big-budget movie of his own creation, he does not disappoint, as Inception is by far one of the best films of the last several years.

The plot is the strongest feature of Inception. In a way, it mirrors the labyrinthine twists of the subconscious, but Nolan is adept at keeping all his proverbial ducks in a row. Luckily, the plot isn’t exactly the same as dreaming, because that would make an insane, disjointed experience. The only negative I could find regarding the flow of the plot was during the first 15 minutes. Nolan doesn’t hold back on twisting your brain, and expects you to figure out when he’s showing reality and when he’s showing you a dream. The plot generally follows the heist genre, but because many elements take place during dream sequences, you never really know what’s going to come next until the film finally ends.

The cast does an excellent job, with much of the interaction spinning around the hub that is Leonardo DiCaprio. Nolan has said that the emotional life of this character is the “guiding thread of the story” and DiCaprio gives a great performance as the dream security expert who is haunted by his own dreams. The supporting cast, that includes Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Ellen Page, Marion Cotillard, Michael Caine and Cillian Murphy, truly has no weak points; they round out the story well, and in some cases provide some needed comic relief in heavier moments.

Inception is a surprise blockbuster. For a heist movie with tinges of sci-fi, it’s a thinker of a movie that will reward extra viewings with extra insight into the motivations of the characters. The action isn’t overly heavy, the special effects work for the story and not the other way around, and it has one of the most clever plots I’ve seen in a very long time. Do not miss this movie.

Five stars out of five.