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Entries in vfx (1)

Tuesday
Mar202012

inception.lucid dreaming

when idries shah, the preeminant sufi teacher was asked to name "a fundamental mistake of man's," he replied, "to think that he is alive, when he has merely fallen asleep in life's waiting room."

- from exploring the world of lucid dreaming

"dreams, they feel real while we're in them right?. it's only when we wake up do we realize something was actually strange." -dom cobb, inception

when i first saw inception a few years ago, like many people, i was quite taken in by it. i recall thinking at the time that the film felt like a bit of a visual effects game changer in the way the matrix was ten years prior. i still feel that way. both films presented visual effects that were unusual and innovative and wove these effects into a story line in such a way that the results were completely psychologically immersive. the so-called "wizardry" of both bullet time and bending cities have now become iconic. but their emotional resonance within the films endure. i felt this was more than computer graphics posturing. they were and and remain examples of what can be achieved when vfx are allowed to move beyond the literal and into the abstract dream state.

i started thinking about inception again because, like the matrix it draws on some well known philosophical concepts towards constructing a pop oriented interpretation. to this end, the film's use of lucid dreaming theory and research is pretty well known.  having recently begun reading stephen laBerge's book on lucid dreaming however, i find the film's premise even more intriguing.  certainly the film posits some far out concepts. but in principle, the idea that we can achieve greater self awareness and reprogram ourselves in a waking state through lucid dreaming [in other words, inception] is entirely plausible as it turns out. at the moment i am only in the first phase  of the book which focuses on accurate dream recall. but stay tuned for future lucid dreaming updates...