Cartoon-loving NY Times film critic A.O. Scott had the unenviable task of having to review a grown up movie, Christopher Nolan’s “Inception.” Scott’s tepid review is based on his premise that the plot needs to be taken literally. He’s admits to feeling uneasy at the beginning of the film because of what he perceives to be an awkward time shift. As if one were in a dream?

His lazy review goes on to criticize the film for sharing the same actor and a similar plot development as Martin Scorcese’s “Shutter Island.” While Leonardo DiCaprio is outstanding in both movies, you will not feel cheated by the ending of “Inception” that you may have felt from “Shutter Island.”

“Inception” works because, as Christopher Nolan has explored in all of his movies, perception and memory are not reliable. Unlike “Memento,” “Insomnia” and “The Prestige” however, we as an audience don’t know what our protagonist does not know. Is Cobb dreaming the entire time? Is someone else? And like most dreams which don’t follow a linear plot, shouldn’t we be more concerned with signs and symbols than the plausibility of what is happening?

My only criticism of the film is that Ken Watanabe’s English was a major challenge. When in doubt: use subtitles. If the Gallagher brothers of the defunct band Oasis didn’t mind subtitles I’m sure K-Wat wouldn’t care either. And they’re British!

So why pick on A.O. Scott for his less than enthusiastic review? Well, Mr. Scott (to use a pretentious Times device) obviously felt a backlash from film lovers. He used a hell of a lot of column inches in the Sunday Times to defend his review after it was pointed out that his head was firmly up his own ass.

He claims over-hyping may have lead film enthusiasts to want to love the film, while he, the unbiased critic only wanted to share with them his truth. However, his review and his defense both point to a bias against Christopher Nolan movies. He evens goes out of his way to mention that “The Dark Knight” was over-rated. Really? By whom, your fellow Times critic Manhola Dargis who gave it a glowing review and listed it in her Top Ten of 2008. Scott excluded “The Dark Knight” from his Top Films of 2008 but found room to include the cartoon “Ratatouille” and the cartoonish “Knocked Up.”

Scott would have you believe that critics are blank slates simply reporting on what they see. If that were the case then why constantly compare “Inception” to movies that he liked better, like the completely over-rated “2001: A Space Odyssey.” Oops. He ends his apologia with this thought: “Just as critics need to operate in good faith, so should consumers of criticism proceed from the assumption of good faith. We may be wrong, but we tend to say what we mean.”

Fair enough, Ay-Oh, but then why suggest that people see the movie twice? Hoping that they will eventually agree with you? My god, man, what an Inception!