The Complete Guide to Understanding Inception


That Christopher Nolan is one clever dude. Even now, after seeing Inception twice, I still feel like I need to see it again in order to understand all its complexities. Nolan is just such a master of creating complex puzzles out of his films, and Inception is by far one of his best riddle-films yet. I won’t get in to the many interpretations of Inception in much detail here, because it has pretty well all been said before, more eloquently, by other people. But what I will do is provide you readers and fellow fans of the film with a complete guide to understanding it! Click the jump for a full rundown of all the different facets of Inception that make the movie great. Does the top fall? Does it keep spinning? Does it even matter? Read more to find out!

Warning: Spoilers ahead!


First, I highly recommend you read this prequel comic that explains how the characters wound up in the situation they find themselves in at the start of the film.

Next, take a look at these charts, which plot out the different levels of Inception, complete with who is dreaming what, which kick is which, and whose head the characters are in. Click the images for larger views.


Was the movie all a dream? After listening to this, I’m beginning to think so:

Devin Faraci of and someone calling himself 454 W 23rd St New York explain Inception better than I ever could in these two articles.

Finally, let’s wrap things up with some parodies! Again, click the images for larger views.



Sweet dreams!

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