Is Chris Nolan's Mind The Scene Of The Crime? Inception/Scrooge McDuck Comparison!
In the Scrooge McDuck comic book, "Dream of a Lifetime," the Beagle Boys use a contraption to enter into Scrooge McDuck dreams with only one purpose: extract the secret combination to Scrooge McDuck's vault. Sound familiar? Inception spoilers ahead.
Christopher Nolan has been hailed as the next face on the Mount Rushmore of groundbreaking directors -- Stanley Kubrick, Alfred Hitchcock, Martin Scorcese and now, Christopher Nolan. Film critics and fans proclaim that Nolan's latest film, Inception, is this generation's 2001: A Space Odyssey -- a sci-fi epic so rich with stunning visuals and boundless imagination that it transcends "film" to the level of visceral "experience."
While the special effects and visuals rival or surpass those of any other contemporary sci-fi flick not directed by James Cameron, the force that drives viewers back for repeated viewings -- and into perpetual argumentation -- is Inception's core premise: What if we could intrude into a person's dreams to extract information from the dreamer's subconscious?The premise is seemingly paradoxical, so simple yet so complex. Hollywood has seen films derivative of this concept, a list of which includes the Matrix, the Thirteenth Floor, and Dark City (all acknowledged by Nolan in one or more interviews about Inception). Dreamscape appears to be Inception's closest relative, but that story was predicated on a psychic entering dreams with the sole purpose to murder.
No film has revolved around the concept of using a contraption to allow multiple dreamscapers to enter into a victim's dream to extract his secrets for financial gain. This concept is undoubtedly original and unique right?
Don Rosa -- the writer of the Life and Times of Scrooge McDuck -- might emphatically disagree.
In the Scrooge McDuck story, "Dream of a Lifetime," the Beagle Boys -- a gang of canine criminals that historically try to steal from McDuck -- use a contraption to enter into Scrooge McDuck's dream while he's sleeping to try to "steal" the secret combination to McDuck's vault of goodies. McDuck's nephews, including Donald Duck, use the same contraption to enter McDuck's dream and thwart the Beagle Boys. Rather than re-tell the story, here is a list of notable panels in Dream of a Lifetime, matched with a similar scene from Inception (click on the thumbnails to view the panel. The Inception vs. McDuck analysis is directly below each panel):
Dream of a Life Time panel: The Beagle Boys procure a contraption that was invented for psychiatrists to examine dreams by entering their patients' dreams, and the Beagle Boys intend to use the contraption for a different, illegal purpose. Page 2
Inception scene: The team procures a contraption that was invented for soldiers to train in simulated combat and warfare, and the team intends to use the contraption for a different, illegal purpose.
Dream of a Life Time panel: The Beagle Boys use the contraption to enter into McDuck's dream so they can attempt to extract the secret combination to unlock McDuck's vault. Page 2
Inception scene: The team uses the contraption to enter into Saito's dream so they can attempt to extract an undisclosed idea from the vault in his head. (opening scene)
Dream of a Life Time panel(s): If the Beagle Boys are still in McDuck's dream when he wakes up, they will be trapped in McDuck's head forever. Page 3
Inception scene: If someone is killed while in the dream of a heavily sedated dreamer, he will be trapped in the dream in a state called "limbo" -- which can last several decades.
Dream of a Life Time panel(s): Scrooge McDuck is aware that he is in a dream, and his subconscious characters, the Dalton Boys, shoot at the Beagle Boys upon encounter. Page 4
Inception scene: Saito is aware that he is in a dream, and his subconscious security guards shoot at Dom and capture Arthur.
Dream of a Life Time panel(s): The dream world starts to "evaporate" and defies the laws of physics. Page 7
Inception scene: The dream world starts to crumble and bend and defies the laws of physics.
Dream of a Life Time panel(s): When McDuck falls in the dream, he wakes up. Page 7
Inception scene: When a dreamer dies in the dream (while not heavily sedated), he wakes up.
Dream of a Life Time panel(s): McDuck travels from Texas to Australia simply by starting a new dream. Page 8
Inception scene: The team travels from apparently Los Angeles to Canada simply by entering a new dream.
Dream of a Life Time panel(s): When McDuck's nephew clangs two mugs together loudly next to Donald's ear while he's dreaming, Donald dreams about mugs falling from the sky. Page 9
Inception Scene: When Dom is dunked in water while dreaming, Dom dreams about water gushing at him.
Dream of a Life Time panel(s): When Donald Duck thinks about cars, a stream of cars busts through his dream. Page 10
Inception Scene: When Dom thinks about a train, a train busts through the dream.
Dream of a Life Time panel(s): When McDuck hears popping while he's sleeping, he dreams about popcorn popping. Page 12
Inception scene: When Yusuf drinks too much champagne before sleeping, he dreams about it raining.
Dream of a Life Time panel(s): Scrooge McDuck re-dreams one particular memory over and over again, which involves him missing out on his love, Goldie, because he gets hit in the head by an ice block. Page 24
Inception scene: Dom re-dreams one particular memory over and over again, which involves him losing his love, Mal, because she kills herself.
Dream of a Life Time panel(s): Through his dream, Scrooge McDuck tries to make it up to Goldie by reliving a memory of the two of them together. Page 26
Inception scene: Through his dream, Dom tries to make it up to Mal by reliving a memory of the two of them together.
Did Nolan "borrow" from Don Rosa's story about Scrooge McDuck? Or is it a coincidence? Or is it possible that two films exist featuring heists that take place in a subject's dreamscape?
Of course Nolan did not borrow from stories about Scrooge McDuck, Nolan is ethically and creatively better than that. Nolan is today's most original and imaginative director.
Memento was based off of his brother's story, Memento Mori.
The Prestige was based off of the novel, The Prestige.
The Batman movies were based off of, well, the Batman comic books.
Insomnia was a remake of the movie, Insomnia.
Inception was based off of the comic book story, Dream of a Lifetime from the Life and Times of Scrooge McDuck.
I'm joking about the last one. Sort of.
(Original Source: BoingBoing)
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