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David Carter

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9781911325055

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: February 2021

DOI: 10.3828/liverpool/9781911325055.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM LIVERPOOL SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.liverpool.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Liverpool University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in LSO for personal use.date: 19 September 2021

The Question of Genre

The Question of Genre

(p.33) 4. The Question of Genre

David Carter

Liverpool University Press

This chapter discusses the genre of Christopher Nolan's Inception (2010). Nolan changed his mind several times about what kind of film he wanted to make. This led him to view the material at different times in terms of different genres. He has said that he initially imagined developing the general idea as a horror film, and wrote an 80-page treatment about dream-stealers. As he set about writing it he came to view it more as a heist film, though even at this early stage he had reservations about conceiving it in this genre. It is clear that he was starting to envision something with psychological depth. The chapter reflects on the notion of genre in general, how best to identify and describe genres, and then on the characteristics of the heist and sci-fi genres in particular. It also considers the tech noir genre; films commonly identified as tech noir freely explore deeper levels of human psychology.

Keywords:   Christopher Nolan, Inception, film genres, heist film, heist genre, sci-fi genre, tech noir

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