Psychology with Cheryl Harsevoort

I really love school and the camaraderie that it has once you get to know people. As some of you already know I am a serious student that believes in following the way things should be. OK! Now that we have that line of bull out of the way let’s have some fun and hear how it really happens.

This semester I changed my major from Business Management and I am now in the IT program and I love it. I have two really cool teachers Jeff Scott & Jim Schmidt which make learning really fun. OK! Here comes the problem. I also have Intro to Psychology with Cheryl Harsevoort and Sociology with Glen Hoffarth. I feel sorry for Glen for putting up with me but wait this gets worse. Oh! The teachers are fantastic teachers. No doubt in my mind about that! I would recommend them to anyone needing to take either subject because that is how fantastic they are. That is not the problem here. The problem is when it comes to subjects that don’t follow what I am interested in then my mind is more like a strainer instead of a hard drive that stores the information. I do my homework and participate in class & never miss a class or late (unless I am taking pictures for the school paper The Flyer). You know what they say, “ ‘It’ happens.”

OK! In Psychology class last week, Cheryl had us watch a movie called ‘Inception’. It was broken up into 3 days. Now as far as I am concerned the movie would have been bad enough to follow if it was just shown in one sitting but 3 days made it grueling to say the least. So… Cheryl asked that we write a paper on this movie. Just to remind you again, I think Cheryl is a fantastic teacher and she really has her knowledge of the subject down pat. Now just so that you understand who is writing this article… my son is studying to be a psychiatrist in Milwaukee to attempt to understand me and my friend Terri, here at BTC, is taking abnormal psychology (with Cheryl) to try to understand me. Can you see what I do to people? Are you catching on yet? I really feel sorry for Jeff Scott & Jim Schmidt because the rest of my time here, they are stuck with me for almost all of my classes and they may be going for therapy by the time I graduate. In fact, THEY may be throwing the graduation party.

So here is the actual paper I wrote up for Cheryl on the movie ‘Inception’:

My interpretation of the movie ‘Inception’

It was a bad enough film that after the first 45 minutes I wanted to walk out of the classroom because it shot over my head like the Blue Angel’s FA-18 Hornet.
The ONLY reason I stayed is that my grades are so bad with tests in this class that I need every point I can possibly get.
Here is what I could understand after my daughter MADE me watch the whole thing in one sitting, my son-in-law tried to explain it (in his warped vision) and this is also what I could get from people’s ideas on the Internet. I will not be watching this again because I get confused all on my own without help in my old age! Now the Muppet Movie … I can give you a great, 2 thumbs-up, review on that.

The special effects in this film were cool. There are slow-motion shots, like the fighting sequences, weightlessness, a great winter scene and of course someone is blowing up a building, which is always good in any movie in my honest opinion. Maybe that is why I loved Bruce Willis’ movies. I never had seen a vehicle fall off a bridge in real life but… if I did… I don’t think it would take 45 minutes to get to the water. By the way, the music in the background of the movie was great just in case you were trying to pay too much attention to the plot and didn’t notice.So here goes … This is the best that I can do on this project… BTW I am giving you as much information here as possible so that you WON’T have to waste money renting this movie or your time!
The movie stars Leonardo DiCaprio who plays a guy named Dom Cobb, a criminal who, with the help of a bunch of other ‘sleep experts’, works his way into people’s subconscious and steals what people value most: people’s thoughts or memories. They call him an ‘extractor’ who is paid to steal information, like top secret ideas, from successful business men.

In the first 20 minutes, Cobb propels out a window on a bungee cord and then repels up the side of the building. I am not sure whether this is intentional, but the whole sequence looks like it was stolen from the movie “Batman”. Dom has been separated from his children after his wife committed suicide, still not sure why, and he wants to be reunited with them and I think he is running because he is being blamed for her death (that is… if it isn’t a dream). Someone is paying Cobb to plant an idea into some oriental guy’s mind. I think his name is Saito. Now Saito knows how to block ideas from being taken from his mind. (If you are lost don’t worry it’s gonna get worse as I continue, I promise.) It should also be noted that dying in the dream world can result in real life death or the person being trapped perpetually in a dreamlike state forever. (Now if you think I am hopping all over the place writing this article this is perfectly straight compared to the movie.)

So … his late wife (yes, she can’t even leave him alone when she is dead) keeps showing up in his dreams haunting him and screwing things up for him. (Been there in real life, had that done, know how the poor guy feels!) I think that he has been trying to get overly involved in his work so that he can put her out of his mind. (Worked for me! Then again my divorce worked better for me!) So anyways … Saito, gives him a job of screwing up the empire of his business rival. The job wasn’t to steal anything but to plant a new idea into some other person’s head. That is how you get the movie name of: ‘Inception’ . Somehow, this guy Saito dies but shows up at the end of the movie as an old guy about 100 years old. (Please don’t ask! I couldn’t figure that out either.) So now, Cobb gets his “team” together to set this gig up. Somewhere in the movie someone said that nobody was to touch a special object, that they called a totem, that they pick to tell the difference between the real world and dreaming. Don’t know if that was to be a bad luck thing or what.(It would be worse luck having to sit through this movie.)

They are going to need this totem because they have a way to not only dream but to go in that dream (level two) and do what they need to do and go even further into a new (third) level and do what they want there too. (Confused yet? See the movie & make sure you do it with a bottle of something strong so that you have something to enjoy with your popcorn! I just wish I knew how they managed to sleep so fast. It takes me 45 minutes to get to sleepy land.) Once back in “reality”, Cobb is reunited with his children. He seems to wonder if this is the real world or still a dream, and so he pulls out his totem to test the theory. He sets the top spinning and waits to see if it eventually slows. Meanwhile, he’s distracted by his children and walks away without seeing the results. Cobb actually walks away from the darn top before seeing the answer. (Duh!) I guess he loves his children, so he really doesn’t care what the results are going to be.

Here is a couple of things that I thought are crazy (besides the entire movie):

Cobb’s kids in the movie. They never changed their clothes besides the last scene at end of the movie because they are older actors here. Is there something to be interpreted here? Shouldn’t they have aged if Saito did? Then again, he aged about 100 years at the end and the only thing I can attribute to that is that he was shot and died. I don’t know! Anyways, they never actually say how many days – months – years have passed since the mom died.

I didn’t notice this at all until the guy in the back row of the class talked about it so I tried to notice it when my daughter FORCED me to watch this again.

THE WEDDING RING: Here’s the thing: the toy top (totem) was never Cobb’s totem. It was his wife’s totem. Remember I said you can’t touch another person’s totem for some reason? I don’t know exactly why, but I think that even though his wife died, the totem would never really be Cobb’s totem, simply because it wasn’t his before. (This is getting to sound more like Abbot & Castello’s – “Who’s on First” skit. BTW The lettering in blue is a link to listen to the Abbot & Castello skit.)

The totem can have only one “owner”, and the top’s owner is (well… was) his wife who ‘supposedly’ is dead but keeps interrupting his work and screwing things up by trying to kill people – including Cobb. Cobb’s totem is actually his wedding ring; you can see he always wears it when he’s dreaming, but he doesn’t wear it in reality (well, if you want to call any of this flick reality that is.). All I know is that he wasn’t wearing it in the ending of the movie. The absence of his wedding ring could say that he has put that part of his life in back of him. I’m thinking that he locked his wedding ring in a safe the way his wife locked reality away. Then again, the wedding ring can symbolize the guilt he felt after performing inception on his wife. At the end, he got “over” her, was relieved of the guilt, and so the wedding ring disappears (a good lawyer and a divorce would do that too) and the ending is STILL a bad dream.

The end of the movie was cheaply made to save them money because the last 5 minutes was the exact same as the beginning where Cobb is found on a beach and dragged into Saito’s office at the end of a long table. Blah, Blah, Blah! OK! One thing that was good about designing this movie was that if there was a mistake made or some kind of a script slip up nobody would notice or somebody may even interpret it as a clue.

Sorry! Best I could do for such a sucky movie! Now you can see why nobody asks me to critique any movies.
However, I could write a review on The Sixth Sense. Now THAT was a thinker with a great ending.

Did you just hear that?
Can you hear the toilet flushing?
There goes my perfect 4.0 grade point average right down the drain!