Once Leonardo DiCaprio brought fame to Inception, audience members and theorists began to create intense theories about the meanings behind the film along with if the end is really all a dream or not.  Surprisingly enough, there are other films that fall into the mind jogging dream inception genre.  What makes up this brand new genre?  Let us dive in and find out.

Paprika is not an animated movie about spices, regardless of the joke references made about the girl being a spice, it is a movie about a technology company investing in dream access technology.  The movie has many characters who have two distinct personalities and characters, one in reality, and one in their dreams.  Dr. Chiba Atsuko is Paprika in her dreams and the movie alludes to the two characters having foil like character designs.  In the movie, the dream world and reality frequently confuse one another, even for those who believe they have control over the technology.  Many audiences have speculated if Paprika was actually the influence and inspiration for Inception.

Inception the movie, not the newly discovered genre, revolves around the idea of a thief, Dom Cobb, who enters the minds of others while utilizing experimental technology.  The movie has the main character go through numerous layers of other’s minds.  Many audience members, similarly to Paprika, speculate that the main character may continue to be in a dream or a Limbo like place even at the conclusion of the movie.


  • Both movies are about utilizing experimental technology.
  • Both aim to dive into the minds of others for some sort of manipulation (Inception- idea planting, Paprika- therapy).
  • Both have characters that act regardless of some sort of resistance.
  • Both leave the option open for the characters to still be in a dream like state perceived by the audience.
  • Both have moments where the audience and characters may not know if they are in reality or the dream-like state/Limbo.

In Short

What makes this genre unique and new is that the concept of creating multiple dream-like states where neither the audience nor characters can confidently be sure of if they are in reality or not is extremely difficult to write a script for successfully.  Both movies utilize experimental technology that is being used for crimes and have individuals attempting to gain control of the technology.  They create such a convincing dream-like state/Limbo that both characters and audience become unable to identify the reality they in at the time.  The Matrix could also fit into this genre as the originator but the resurgence in popularity falls to Inception.