I thought that Fisher didn't die but was in a comatose, because they can't send him a level deeper and revive him with the kick, same with Ariadne, because when Cobb dies at the level four and washes up on Limbo, he and Saito presumably kill themselves, they end up in reality. That's just what I thought...
There is another theory that in the plane is actually still in a dream, in which that could point out to why the top spins and mysteriously, we don't know if it falls or not. Who dreamed the plane?
But someone is only awake in a dream if it is his/her own dream. Limbo, on the other hand, is shared with the people dreaming it. In the plane, all of them are awake. We still don't know if it is reality or not, and the movie shows a mystery at the end. Reality is a dream? Or the dream is reality?
Wow, this helped me alot. Thanks so much!! I really appreatate it. The only thing I'm sort of still confused about is that at the end of the movie, Cobb finally gets to live with his kids. When he spins his top thing, it should fall since he is in reality. However it dosent, meaning he's not in reality...
The top is shown neither continuing to spin nor falling at the end of the movie. It begins to wobble as the camera tilt-pans onto it, and then before we can see the outcome, the movie cuts to black. The point is that we don't know if the top fell or continued to spin, the movie ended before we could find out.
Yes, but if you listened or watched closely, you could tell that it began to show signs of wobbling, meant to place doubt into the watcher's mind. However, before we could see the true outcome, the screen went to black.
In reality, a well-made top can spin for minutes if given enough force.
what if Cobb was actually asleep... i mean, dreaming ALL of it and this whole "inception" adventure was his own subconscience telling him, or trying to remind him that he was still sleeping we see his father telling him so, we se Mal telling him so thoughout the whole movie, and both of them could have been mere projections
we see Mal's top spun by his hand, but, it wasn't originally his totem, that means its not that thrustworthy, so from the, what, 6 times it is spun, we see only 2 or 3 that actually stop
also his chidren had the very same clothes in his visions than when he "gets home"
oh man, i think i'll have to make an infographic like that one of yours explaining my theory
Did you even read what I made? I just explained why it doesn't matter that it was originally Mal's totem, and how his children are wearing different clothes (and they're older, even different actors).
And if Cobb was still asleep, all Mal would need to do is re-enter the dream with him. As we saw in the movie multiple times that's entirely possible (Adrian to Cobb, and Cobb/Adrian to Fischer) to join someone in their dream. Let's say Mal "killed herself" to wake up. She wakes up and after being unable to wake Cobb up, she simply goes back into the dream. Cobb is shocked because Mal is alive on his "reality" level (realize the only time you see Mal is in the dream levels), tada, proof that he's been dreaming the whole time. But that didn't happen, proof that he's not dreaming.
But remember, IF this wholes thing was Cobb's dream, and if Cobb is in LIMBO!, Even Mal tries to reenter Cobb's dream, it would take Mal at least few minutes to set up the device, or at least few second to make the decision and actually fall asleep. That few second on Mal's level can be decades or centuries in Cobb's level, that is the reason Mal has not show up yet.
Urg finally that thinks exactly the same as me! My friends pester me about how he didn't wake up and even though I tried to explain this to them, they didn't catch it. So now with this they will have to believe me hehehe thanks
Remember that Saito dies a few minutes before Fisher is revived. As such, in the time it takes between the kick from Level 3 up to Level 2 and Saito dying could be quite a few years in limbo.
To further explain this, I think this is the better explanation here about Cobbs:
Cobbs dives to Limbo. There, he meets Mal. Mal stabs him. He dies after some time in Limbo (which is mere seconds in Level 3). He kicks back to Level 3 after Fischer and Ariadne, but does not successfully kick out of Level 3, and is sent back into Limbo from death by explosion. This would explain the time discrepancy between Saito aging and Cobbs not.
It's not entirely solid, but it's somewhat plausible, accounting for time discrepancies between levels, and the sheer magnitude of the discrepancies.
I completely agree with this explanation--I was just about to comment with my own along the same lines. [How convenient that I don't have to--I'll just piggyback off of yours. ] I can't be buggered at the moment to figure out the exact times and write it all down, but I think this explanation would be solid if we got a timeframe down.
Remember, though, that Cobb didn't go after Saito the second he died and went to limbo. If ten hours in the real world is a week in the first level, that's 168 hours (as said in the movie). Basing our assumptions off of that, level two (the hotel) was a little over 117 days, or four months. Level three (the hospital) is ten years because Yusuf said that the time compounded over levels. Level four (where Ariadne and Cobb went after Fischer which is Cobb's dream, aka Limbo) is 737 years. Saito's dream (where Cobb eventually finds him) is on the same level as Cobb's dream, so it can be assumed that Cobb woke up into level 3 and went back down into Saito's dream since he couldn't switch over to another dream on the same level. It's possible he did this because he could've died from the aforementioned knife wound.
So four levels down you're waiting 737 years to wake up naturally.
Let's say it took about twenty minutes in the hospital level for Cobb to come back from the dead and somehow go back down into Saito's dream. Going this route would make five minutes in level three nearly five hours in Limbo.
However, instead of assuming that Saito's dream is on the same level, let's assume that Saito's dream is a fifth level, which would make equal sense since the knife wound was obviously non-lethal and Cobb's extensive work with going into Limbo with Mal (between just the two of them) makes it easy for him to reach this fifth level. We can also assume that this fifth level has time compounded far more than the previous levels (about 10,000 times longer than real life. This would make sense that five minutes we see Eames running about getting shit done in the hospital level takes almost five hours in Cobb's dream and nearly one hundred years in Saito's dream. Hence, Saito being an old man by the time Cobb gets down there to find him.
This is all speculation, though, so don't hold me to it. :3
The thought that Cobb remembers he's dreaming and simply chooses not to age is the most plausible to me. After all, Cobb is the experienced dream diver, not Saito. I assume Saito thought up his world after a few weeks of waiting and, after a few years, forgot that there was anything beyond what he'd created. Although that doesn't explain why he'd waited so long, so, sadly, you gotta kinda factor in the compounded time. It took me a while to come up with numbers for Limbo that made the old age make sense, and even then I slapped on a fifth layer that (probably) only I assumed was there. Lol.
Anyway, it's all super complicated and lovely and amazing and thank you for sharing this with everyone. I love this movie oh-so-much and the complications just make me want to pick at it more. >:3
Brilliant, thank you so so so much. I almost had it figured out on my own, except I had forgotten that they had to wait a week before the machine turned off and they all woke up. Your explaination just ignited a lightbulb over my head.
I totally agree with the last part of your "Limbo explanation". We really should find some Extractors and break into Christopher Nolan's mind Anyway, I agree also with the other parts of it, except the one with Cobb chosing not to age. When he's dragged to Saito's house he seems to be really confused. It's his old totem, which makes him realize everything. Therefore I don't think that he could chose anything. I think it's rather like another explanation I found says: he died in Limbo, because of injury Mal made (she wounded him with knife, after all), woke up in one of previous levels only to die again and go back to Limbo. That's why he didn't age, at least not as much as Saito. But I also believe in happy ending, even though it took three times watching to come to such conclusion. After two I stronly believed that Cobb didn't actually wake up. Great job!
I agree with everything, but I have a little twist of my own at the end. I still believe he's in reality but in Limbo, he was forgetting a little bit. I believe he may have aged maybe 2 or 3 years in Limbo, because when you forget in Limbo you start to age. But he still remembered some of it, and so, doing the math, he figured that the sedatives above had run out and if he killed himself in Limbo he would wake up. (Sedatives must run out before you can kill yourself in Limbo to wake up. Hahaha I love Chris Nolan's wonderful mind!)
I have to admit, this is a very good and plausible theory. Nice job making a clear explanation. Still, you have assumed dream-limbo mechanics not explained in the movie as true, so we can't know for sure if it really works like that, although it could definitely be so.
No no no -- the reason Fischer wakes up out of limbo is not because he dies, but because he was given the kick. Eames' defibrillator combined with the shock of being thrown off the building served as a secondary kick to wake him up out of limbo, and the defibrillator doubled as both a kick and a life-saving device. The reason he woke up was not because he died.