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5 Levels of Inception SPOILERS by cb-smizzle 5 Levels of Inception SPOILERS by cb-smizzle
This is an infographic I made for Cinema Blend detailing the 5 dream levels of Inception. If you haven't seen the movie yet, I recommend not reading this because it will probably spoil a great movie for you.

I did the artwork and Cinema Blend's Josh Tyler did the text. You can read the full article at this link:

[link]


Also a little disclaimer based on some comments I've read elsewhere:
This explanation is based on Cinema Blend's interpretation of the movie. Nobody is trying to tell you this is the definitive explanation of the movie, just our own. Please don't get upset if this doesn't fit with your thoughts on the movie, part of what makes Inception so great is that different people can leave with different thoughts and then go and discuss their theories after seeing the film. That's part of the fun.
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:iconironsides11:
ironsides11 Featured By Owner Jun 27, 2012
Thanks for a nice guide to the movie.
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:iconnessasworld:
NessasWorld Featured By Owner Apr 26, 2012
O.O OMG IT ALL MAKES SENSE NOW...! XD jk I totally got it when I watched it....
Still this helps... :D
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:iconazulempire:
AzulEmpire Featured By Owner Jan 7, 2012
You got it a bit wrong I think. Level 5 is Cobb's dream world that he built with Mal. There he finds her projection threatening Fischer etc. Ariadne gets back with him, but since Saito died, Cobb decides to go into Limbo to get him. And that's the dream where basically the movie begins, where Saito is old.
But great work anyway, best overview I've seen yet.
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:iconhydrate3:
hydrate3 Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Cobb and his wife were trapped in Limbo and decided to make it there own world, not there own state of mind.
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:iconjaide-chan:
Jaide-chan Featured By Owner Dec 16, 2011
whoa this is good!
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:iconravenwhitecastle:
RavenWhitecastle Featured By Owner Nov 20, 2011  Hobbyist Writer
Level 5: LIMBO.
Who dreamed it? No one. It's a shared state.
Who goes there? Cobb, Ariadne, Saito, Robert Fischer Junior. ... And Mal.... or her projection, anyway.... as an afterthought....
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:iconavpmfreakify101:
AVPMfreakify101 Featured By Owner Sep 27, 2011
When do we know that Cobb and Saito shoot themselves?
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:iconlupevales:
lupevales Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2012
Yea I wondered that too... Its never really shown how they suddenly both woke up... O.O
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:iconavpmfreakify101:
AVPMfreakify101 Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2012
hm... :shrug: whatev! it gives us room to be creative... ;) lol
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:iconlupevales:
lupevales Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2012
Dude there's so much to be creative with. ESPECIALLY the beginning : The Saito mission. Who hired them to go into Saito's mind to begin with? and How did he know they were coming? He said audition stage. Was it a setup? Who was the japanese kid they had for the kick in reality? Who was the traitorous architect? DUDE the brain juices are flowing here. The Saito mission is especially intruiging because of the apartment. It was a personal apartment from saito's past. Obviously created from memory. Broken rule: why? I want to explode right now because Im bursting with excitement over this . Inception deserves a prequel!


Arthur was the forger that time too! Because there was no Eames. INTRUIGING THAT MOLL FIGURED OUT ARTHUR WAS THE DREAMER! Howd she figure that one out???????????
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:iconavpmfreakify101:
AVPMfreakify101 Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2012
I KNOW RIGHT!!!!!!!!!!! Mal is my fave character... she's awesome! in a twisted way ;)
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:iconzdorik-sandorik:
zdorik-sandorik Featured By Owner Aug 30, 2011
Amazing!)
Reply
:iconbarvckstudios:
BarvckStudios Featured By Owner Aug 3, 2011  Hobbyist General Artist
NICE!!!
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:iconeduceav:
educeav Featured By Owner Jul 1, 2011
I think level 5 belongs to Cobb ("The Extractor") because the are in button of his mind.
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:iconcb-smizzle:
cb-smizzle Featured By Owner Jul 3, 2011   Interface Designer
Earlier in the movie when they first talk about limbo they make it clear that it's the dream state that everyone goes to when they die within a dream. Remember, Saito was there long enough to grow old while Cobb had only been there for a short while. If it was Cobb's dream, they would have both aged equally.
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:icontwin-angel:
Twin-Angel Featured By Owner Jun 28, 2011
But I thought Level 4 was Fischer's dream...
Either way this really helped my mom even after the 5th time we watched it xD
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:iconcb-smizzle:
cb-smizzle Featured By Owner Jul 3, 2011   Interface Designer
Nope, they want him to believe that it's his dream but actually Eames is the dreamer.
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:icontwin-angel:
Twin-Angel Featured By Owner Jul 7, 2011
As soon as I had posted my comment I watched Inception again and felt stupid because Cobb even said that it was Eames dream ^^; I guess I tuned out during that part...hehe. But thank you :D
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:iconshadowdream-was-here:
Shadowdream-was-here Featured By Owner Jun 23, 2011  Hobbyist General Artist
Oh man this is soooo helpful haha. Awsome job
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:iconshadowlexis:
ShadowLexis Featured By Owner Jun 23, 2011  Hobbyist Artist
THIS EXPLAINS EVERYTHING SO EASILY!
Now to show this to a friend. We made him believe there was a robot in the film.
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:icondecember-rainfall:
December-Rainfall Featured By Owner Mar 26, 2011
lol! Now my mom, my sister and myself will all be able to understand what the fudge happened, because by the end of the film; we were all lost... I think. :XD:
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:iconhakyness3876:
Hakyness3876 Featured By Owner Feb 27, 2011  Hobbyist General Artist
Wow, this should help people who don't understand the plot out A LOT. Nice work. :D
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:iconcb-smizzle:
cb-smizzle Featured By Owner Mar 21, 2011   Interface Designer
I hope so, thanks!
Reply
:iconcait1508:
Cait1508 Featured By Owner Feb 27, 2011
Just got done watching the movie. Great infographic! btw I was reading earlier about the "todem" things, and the reason others could not touch them is because only the owner knew the weight balance or whatever in them so they would know how they fell or spun or whatever. They wouldnt let another person touch them because if the owner went into the other persons dream, that person would know how it moves and could trick the owner into thinking it was reality. Therefore they had a sure way to test if it was reality or a dream. I don't really know if that made sense, and I'm still not sure if the last scene was a reality or dream...
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:icondesertfire:
Desertfire Featured By Owner Feb 12, 2011   General Artist
I finally saw the movie last month and LOVED it!! I had forgotten to comment on this but this was actually helpful for when I rewatched the movie the 2nd time around straight through to get it. This really helped me understand particulars. Awesome!
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:iconcb-smizzle:
cb-smizzle Featured By Owner Mar 21, 2011   Interface Designer
Nice!
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:iconmonae1momo:
monae1momo Featured By Owner Feb 5, 2011
Nice!
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:iconcb-smizzle:
cb-smizzle Featured By Owner Feb 6, 2011   Interface Designer
thanks:)
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:iconmonae1momo:
monae1momo Featured By Owner Feb 9, 2011
Your welcome!
Reply
:icondaynightdreamer:
daynightDreamer Featured By Owner Jan 24, 2011  Hobbyist Writer
Tres adore this movie.


TRES.
also, thanks for this. I've been trying to explain this to my friend for ages, and I showed her this and she studied it for like thirty minutes and then was like "AAAAAH! I get it now! Let's go watch it again!"
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:iconcb-smizzle:
cb-smizzle Featured By Owner Feb 5, 2011   Interface Designer
Glad I could help!
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:iconwhat-the-gaff:
What-the-Gaff Featured By Owner Dec 9, 2010  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Or DO THEY shoot themselves?
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:iconcb-smizzle:
cb-smizzle Featured By Owner Dec 12, 2010   Interface Designer
uh yes?
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:iconwhat-the-gaff:
What-the-Gaff Featured By Owner Dec 12, 2010  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I just love an ambiguous ending. It lessens the odds of a sequel, that is if the studio knows what's good for it.
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:iconmintymaid:
Mintymaid Featured By Owner Dec 7, 2010
:)
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:iconcb-smizzle:
cb-smizzle Featured By Owner Dec 12, 2010   Interface Designer
:)
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:iconsneaker20000:
sneaker20000 Featured By Owner Nov 15, 2010
nice!
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:iconlyricaltwinsistar:
LyricalTwinSiStar Featured By Owner Nov 13, 2010
Now THIS is perfectly understandable! Thanks for it!
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:iconcb-smizzle:
cb-smizzle Featured By Owner Nov 14, 2010   Interface Designer
No problem :)
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:iconjackiedanielstark:
JackieDanielStark Featured By Owner Sep 12, 2010  Student Photographer
Wow. Just...wow.
This cleared things up quite well. :love: Thanks :D
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:iconcb-smizzle:
cb-smizzle Featured By Owner Sep 14, 2010   Interface Designer
glad to help :)
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:iconmitsuko0xidized:
Mitsuko0xidized Featured By Owner Sep 5, 2010
That... is friggin' awesome! =D
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:iconartemisloki:
ArtemisLoki Featured By Owner Sep 3, 2010  Student
cool
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:iconfreakymode:
freakymode Featured By Owner Sep 2, 2010  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
excellent :love:
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:iconxsanaanx:
XsanaanX Featured By Owner Aug 27, 2010
I'm not shure whether level 1 is reality or not xD
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:iconvankovami:
vankovami Featured By Owner Aug 22, 2010
I really like this pic, but I think there are actually four dream parts in the movie, not three (reality + Yusufīs dream + Arthurīs dream + Eamesīs dream + Cobbīs dream and than limbo). In the snow fortress Ariadne and Cobb fall asleep and appear in Cobbīs dream (I think it was limbo when he and Mal first came and built whole city there, but now itīs just Cobbīs dream). He didnīt want to leave Mal and he had to find Saito, so he didnīt want to wake up with "the kick", so he drowned in the van. Then he was in real limbo, where he found old Saito. They killed themselves with a gun and awake in the plane.

I hope my english is good enough to describe my thoughts... [link]
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:iconflominowa:
flominowa Featured By Owner Aug 20, 2010  Professional Digital Artist
I need to show this to my mom because even after an hour long explanation she still seems thoroughly confused. Thank you for this.
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:iconcarynne0:
carynne0 Featured By Owner Aug 19, 2010
Great, now you got me wondering AGAIN whether or not I was dreaming when I saw that. :lmao:
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:iconcalstor:
Calstor Featured By Owner Aug 18, 2010  Hobbyist General Artist
I think the first level was designed by Ariadne and the last one by Cobb.

Cobb gets back to reality in my interpretation since at the end of the movie you can see the top starting to teeter and in the credits you can hear it fall over.
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:iconfreefall114:
freefall114 Featured By Owner Aug 16, 2010  Hobbyist Writer
i think the level one of 'reality' wasnt reality at all---the movie gave hints that Cobb was in fact dreaming. his father telling him to 'come back to reality' and the weird old guy who confronted him in the basement of dreamers, and the fact that he talked to himself in the first mission: he spoke to himself as the not-so-reliable- archetect. i think...his wife was right.
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