The new film Inception is on my “to see” list for next week. First off, I’ll watch almost any film about dreams. Plus I am a fan of Ellen Page and Leonardo DiCaprio.  And Christopher Nolan previously directed Memento, The Prestige, and three Batman films including The Dark Knight, so he’s worth a try. The reviews have been mostly positive – not that that matters when you want to see something.

There have been other films about getting into people dreams – some horror films, others more sci-fi (The Matrix, Total Recall, Minority Report). We think of our dreams as OUR dreams. One place where you don’t have to worry about security and hackers.

I started recording in a dream journal in my teen years. Movies and dreams have always been connected. Film seems like the best medium to portray dreams. I think most of us view our dreams like films, including the camera point of view in the dream (subjective – you are the camera). I tried reading Freud’s  The Interpretation Of Dreams when I was too young to understand it, and then mainstream books about interpreting your dreams.

Dreams, fantasies, movies. An easy mix.  Freud thought dreams were built out of a combination of our unconscious and the ordinary events of our recent daily life.  For most of us, you probably have to put movies into that mix.

Poster from What Dreams May Come with Robin Williams

One story that I like about dreams is the film What Dreams May Come which then led me to the novel it was based on (also titled What Dreams May Come) by Richard Matheson.  I was a fan of Matheson’s writing before that. He wrote for the classic television show The Twilight Zone which I loved as a kid. (See the episode of that show titled “Perchance To Dream.)

Inception and What Dreams May Come also play games with time which is another topic that fascinates me. I particularly like time travel that doesn’t require any machinery, so Matheson’s novel  Somewhere In Time (also made into a film) fits that formula nicely.

As a kid, I had a tremendous fear of dying in my sleep. So, Hamlet’s speech that gave the book and movie its title –

To die, to sleep;
To sleep: perchance to dream: ay, there’s the rub;
For in that sleep of death what dreams may come
When we have shuffled off this mortal coil,
Must give us pause

– did not give me comfort.  Besides Hamlet’s thoughts of suicide, it also refers to his fears that there might not be peace even in death.

So, add to that fear a fear of someone getting into your dreams.

That’s the basis for all the Freddy Kreuger Nightmare on Elm Street movies and on TV and related Freddy merchandise. Big sellers at Halloween.

I have never seen those films. I don’t want any nightmares. If Freddy kills you in the dream world, you get killed in the real world.