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Why is Mal jumping from a window right opposite from where Cobb is? And when Cobb tells her to "come inside" he actually moves his hand, twice, like he wants her to come towards him, not back in the room behind her.

It could be that the 'reality' in which Mal jumped was actually a dream.

Or it could be that Mal actually set it up that way. (i.e. rented the room she jumped from as well as the one he enters, as part of her plot - so he couldn't save her). [in some hotels there are matching rooms facing each other in different buildings].

It could also just be artistic license. Remember Cobb is describing what happened - this is his memory of it. He would gesture inwards, that's his memory of his physical action - perhaps they were on the same ledge, but in his memory he feels further away from her - more impotent to stop what's about to happen. The room beyond her looks like a mirror image of the room he is in...

I think many people are forgetting one of the simpliest facts that Cobbs says at the begining of the film, that is, dreams always have things or facts that are not logical and we only realize that when we wake up. Taking this into account all the movie must have been a dream because it does not make sense that she is in another building window in front of the room they rented and Coobs instead of telling her to get back in the room he tries to convince her to get into the room he is in, which doe not make sense because it is a dream...

Also and very important the flight everybody takes to do everything goes to Australia at the begining of the film and suddenly at the end of the film the flight is going to Los Angeles... it does not make sense either, just like  dream

Claudia Arrighi asked the question 2010-08-06 03:29:37 UTC view / hide
Claudia Arrighi improved the question 2010-08-06 03:33:43 UTC view / hide
Anon_282 commented 2010-08-06 07:35:29 UTC
I guess she did not want to be on the same side of the gap since this would have allowed other kinds of interaction, like Cobb pulling her in or Mal pulling him out, and she probably wanted that they both jump voluntarily and that to jump or not jump is Codds only choice. Yet I can't see any real reason for the movement of his hand, except that it might be an imprudent expression of his wish to have have safe by his side, even though that is not directly possibly because of the gap between the buildings.
Jenni Bacon provided an answer 2010-08-07 10:34:53 UTC view / hide
Anon_283 commented 2010-08-08 03:13:10 UTC
It seems that Mal planned this suicide in great detail. Remember that she explained to Cobb that if he would not jump, she had taken care to make him not see the children anymore, by giving some suggestive ideas to her lawyer about him being aggressive. She also made a mess of the room Cobb entered. So, it seems logical that she also planned to jump from the opposite window, and that she hired the other room as well, thus preventing Cobb from stopping her.
Anon_292 commented 2010-08-09 06:25:56 UTC
Mal could have just been in a separate room from Cobb. In some hotel rooms, they have a weird "U" shaped building. So she could have actually been across from him.
dmlloyd improved the answer 2010-08-15 13:34:05 UTC view / hide
Jhoger Guerrero improved the answer 2011-12-27 07:03:03 UTC view / hide
Earl Cooper commented 2014-01-03 16:35:04 UTC
This is the one part of the movie that to me is flawed. I can only explain it if we just accept that in dreams there is no logic; there is a messiness where things are scrambled. Any investigation would reveal that Cobb was not responsible for his wife's suicide and that the room Cobb was in had been staged and that she had jumped from a different room and not been pushed. What we see is his recollection of his wife's death, perhaps in a dream state, and one could say that he recalled it from the perspective that she could not be saved. It is a flaw in an otherwise masterpiece.
Jhoger Guerrero commented 2014-01-06 01:24:46 UTC
Thanks for all your answers, although I really would like the Director's explanation on this. Otherwise, we are just guessing
dmlloyd commented 2014-01-09 02:08:15 UTC
"This is the one part of the movie that to me is flawed."

I would assume that in a script like this, so meticulously written over 10 years, nothing like this is a 'flaw'. The Script Supervisor, Art Director, Actor/s and Writer/Director himself would have caught this in production if not in pre-production or development.

If it happened like this, Nolan meant it on purpose. It's your job to conclude why. Did Mal set him up this way? Was Cobb still dreaming when this happened?

I would say Anon_283 is on the money: "So, it seems logical that she also planned to jump from the opposite window, and that she hired the other room as well, thus preventing Cobb from stopping her."

Whether Cobb is still dreaming or not, she wanted him to be there to jump with him too, but she couldn't risk doing it from the same room as he might stop her, going to the lengths to go to the opposite window is perfect, as it allowed he to have him there but not be stopped. Very clever (on both Mal's part and of course Nolan's part).

Michelle James commented 2015-06-06 05:15:40 UTC
I think this is deliberately set up to undermine to reality of "reality." The idea that Mal would get another room across from "their" room and jump from that window, but that no one would know that she had actually been in a different room from her husband is preposterous. This kind of detail is exactly the kind that Cobbs tells us himself is a sign that we are in a dream, the kind of thing we accept while dreaming but later notice doesn't make sense when we wake up.

This doesn't mean the whole movie is a dream, because what we're seeing is kind of a recreation of Cobbs' account to a third party, not a faithful representation of events. All the same, it highlights the way that the scenes set in "reality" never feel really real. It really keeps you guessing.

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