Inception and Memento are movies that shatter the conventional format of film-making. The two films are written and directed by Christopher Nolan who is a visionary filmmaker. This essay contrasts and compares Inception and Memento.
Memento is a movie about a man who is determined to get justice after he loses his beloved wife in spite of the fact that he cannot fully remember the crime. His aim is to ascertain that justice has been served by bringing out the truth. However, the problems of the main character are quite different from the ones people could have in such a situation. The man who murders his wife also beats him severely. The movie shows how the injuries inflicted in Leonard lead to loss of his short-term memory. Therefore, Leonard becomes unable to retain any fresh information. As a result, he resorts to Polaroid photographs and copious note-taking in order to be up to date with his daily events. He retains the awareness that his loved one was murdered brutally and the murderer is still free. He becomes obsessed with revenge for his wife as he wants to be free from the guilt, feeling responsible for her death.
Inception is a movie about a thief who has the power of entering other people’s dreams. The main aim of entering the dreams is to steal ideas. Cobb becomes an ultimate weapon by having the power to gain access to information that even computer hackers cannot get. However, when he loses everything, he seeks for a quest that will help him redeem himself. Instead of stealing ideas, Cobb sets out to plant an idea.
Inception and Memento movies both play with the perception of reality and time. Both movies contain a love story that becomes tragic, with similar conflicts and themes. The two movies are almost alike. This can be explained by the fact that Cobb in Inception and Leonard in Memento seem to fight the same criminal. Cobb and Leonard are both driven by guilt, regret and grief to an extent that their reality perception becomes altered. Leonard desires to discover the truth about the person who killed his wife and the cause of his malfunctioning short-term memory. On the other hand, Cobb aspires to plant an idea and develop honesty in order to redeem himself.
The other similarity of the characters in the two movies is that they desire to be relived of the guilt that they carry, feeling guilty of the death of their loved ones. In the two movies, the characters’ decisions and choices are controlled ultimately by the desire to clear their conscious. As a result, we see them making poor choices, sometimes due to the selfish pursuit of redemption. The other major similarity in the two movies is that the characters seek forgiveness from their loved ones so that they can get relief.
The end of the two movies is quite a contrast from each other. Whereas Cobb in Inception gets the redemption that he was searching for, Leonard keeps on struggling in his anguish for some time as he continues to search.
In conclusion, the two movies present almost the same themes and conflicts. The characters in the two movies desire to find the truth so that they can get redemption. The major difference in the two movies lies in the elements of film-making. Inception movie has exceptional action scenes, while Memento movie has an excellent screenplay. On the other hand, Memento is a bit more realistic when compared to Inception. Also, the turns and twists of Memento are more effective as compared to Inception.