Why Old People Hate Inception

The generational divide will make it a bigger hit
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 3, 2010 8:48 AM CDT
Updated Aug 7, 2010 8:11 AM CDT
Leonardo DiCaprio, left, star of the film "Inception," signs autographs at the premiere of the film in Los Angeles, Tuesday, July 13, 2010.   (AP Photo/Chris Pizzello)

(Newser) – If you’re relatively young, your Facebook and Twitter feeds have surely been full of friends gushing about the wonders of Inception. If you’re a bit older…you probably hated it. Christopher Nolan’s film has created a critical and generational divide reminiscent of “such equally daring films” as Bonnie and Clyde, A Clockwork Orange, Taxi Driver, and Pulp Fiction, writes Patrick Goldstein in the Los Angeles Times. What older viewers see as a “lack of clarity” and “convoluted story,” younger viewers see as a “visually arresting puzzle-box thriller.”

The divide can be partially explained by Inception’s “dense, video-game narrative style,” which appeals—not surprisingly—to video gamers. “Inception is first and foremost a movie about worlds and levels, which is very much the way video games are structured,” says a USC professor. “In today's media-saturated culture, a film that polarizes its audience is often a film on its way to hitdom,” Goldstein concludes. Inception may not become a classic, but “it’s a movie that matters.”

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