“Inception”

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Christopher Nolan wrote and directed Inception after a decade-long struggle to get his story on screen. Given the box office and critical response, his struggle was well worth the effort. Inception isn’t perfect, but it’s a good example of a fresh science fiction concept turned into an entertaining film.

In Inception, humanity has a means of viewing and extracting a person’s dreams. A business tycoon hires expert dream thief Dom Cobb (Leondardo DiCaprio) to implant an idea into a rival businessman’s mind. This proves more difficult because the subject must believe that the idea is truly his or her own. Cobb recruits a team of “dreamers” and misfits for the mission. However, soon Cobb risks losing his grip on reality as he venture deeper into the dreams and memories from his past.

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“Ready Player One” by Ernest Cline

9788466649179Ready Player One is Ernest Cline’s tribute to 1980s popular culture. But it’s also a tribute to the sci-fi/fantasy gaming community that started with Dungeons & Dragons. And to video games, from the 8-bit arcade games up through modern massively multiplayer online game (MMO). And that makes the book a fun read.

The book takes place in the 2040s, but you’d hardly realize except for the fact that most people play a highly immersive, virtual reality MMO called the Oasis. The founder of the Oasis, billionaire James Halliday, passes away and leaves his fortune to whichever player can find an “easter egg” hidden in the game. There’s just one catch: players must master 1980s trivia in order to overcome the various challenges. Continue reading ““Ready Player One” by Ernest Cline”