At the end of the movie 'Inception', is Cobb in the real world or stuck in the dream world?


3 Answers

Lily Bradic Profile
Lily Bradic , Watched the movie several times, and read up on theories online, answered

Christopher Nolan loves messing with his audience, so he's left it deliberately difficult for you to work out what's going on! There's no definite answer to your question, only theories and speculations. Here's what I think:

Inception Ends With Cobb (DiCaprio) Back In The Real World

Like I said before, there are no definitive answers, but here's why I believe Cobb has returned to reality.

  • His totem, the spinning top, wobbles in the final scene. It doesn't stop spinning, as the film ends before it has a chance to, but the top never wobbles in the dream-world.
  • Cobb's children are played by four actors - although they may look similar at the beginning and at the end, they're actually two or three years older by the end of the movie, and are played by different actors.
However, I'm not totally convinced that 'is he dreaming?' is really the question that Nolan's trying to leave you with. I think it's about reality - if something seems real, feels real, and your mind tells you it's real, does it matter if it's not actually real?

Cobb's happy - even if it turns out he is stuck in limbo, he's still much more content than he was before - so does it matter?
Nolan is making you question the nature of reality, and that's why the movie messes with your head. Everybody's reality is different, and there's no way of knowing what's real and what isn't - we can only rely on our senses, but as we all know, dreams can be so vivid that they seem perfectly real at the time.
Screenrant has a brilliant article explaining Inception - not just the ending, but all the other bits that get confusing. I'd recommend reading that over if you're still unsure!

Adila Adila Profile
Adila Adila answered
Remember at the start, he has that little blade thing with him...and that Chinese man has captured him. That's a dream. That's because the man wants him to get him out of his dream. It's a little complicated to understand..

When he gets to the airport, his children are wearing the same clothes, so it could have two interpretations. 

The  man at the start is dreaming so calls on Leo to help him and Leo says something like "Dreams are a never-ending staircase" so there's a possibility that he went through all those dreams, just to end up with the perfect dream, but my conclusion is that he is not dreaming at the end - he only dreamed just because he wanted to see his kids again, but then when he got to the airport, everyone was staring at him. This makes me think it WAS a yeah..he was still dreaming, otherwise why was the whole airport staring at him? And plus him and that Asian guy didn't get a they're still dreaming then, I presume...otherwise they'd have shown the kick...well, it's all just confusing really!
thanked the writer.
CJ commented
I just wanna know at the end of the movie is he dreaming or not? I get the point of the Chinese guy at the beginning of the movie I just wanna know the end.

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