I don't know how he keeps doing it, but Christopher Nolan has hit it out of the park again. This is essentially a con man/heist movie, but it masquerades so well as a trippy mind game movie that the audience is willingly taken in. There is eye candy galore, thrilling action sequences, and a wonderfully executed zero-g hallway battle.
There actually are enough elements here to make a good movie: a reluctant alliance between a group of sparkly leech men and a tribe of shape shifters, an evil leech man raising an army of fellow leech men, and two-thirds of a love triangle that are forced to work together to protect the woman they love. Unfortunately all the potential is squandered. Characters’ motivations are unclear, the dialog is clunky, new plot developments are not sufficiently set up, and everyone (except the breath of fresh air Anna Kendrick) suffers from giant pause-itis. Apparently Bella is really important for some reason or another, but the director, the screenwriter, and actress Kristen Stewart never show us why. Things might make more sense if I read the book, but a movie should never rely on the book to make its sense for it.
Coming up next: the beginning and the end.