Wednesday, November 05, 2014

Movie Review: INTERSTELLAR (2014)




In the near future Earth has been devastated by drought and famine, causing a scarcity in food and extreme changes in climate. When humanity is facing extinction, a mysterious rip in the space-time continuum is discovered, giving mankind the opportunity to widen their lifespan. A group of explorers must travel beyond our solar system in search of a planet that can sustain life. The crew of the Endurance are required to think bigger and go further than any human in history as they embark on an interstellar voyage, into the unknown. However, through the wormhole, one hour is the equivalent of seven years back on Earth, so the mission won't work if the people on Earth are dead by the time they pull it off. And Coop, the pilot of the Endurance, must decide between seeing his children again and the future of the human race.

Ratings: 9.4/10 from 7,045 users   Metascore: 75/100
Reviews: 9 user | 11 critic | 20 from 

From Rotten Tomatoes

Movie Info

With our time on Earth coming to an end, a team of explorers undertakes the most important mission in human history; traveling beyond this galaxy to discover whether mankind has a future among the stars.

TOMATOMETER 75% | Average Rating: 7.4/10 | Reviews Counted: 65

Fresh: 49 | Rotten: 16 

Critics Consensus: Interstellar represents more of the thrilling, thought-provoking, and visually resplendent filmmaking moviegoers have come to expect from writer-director Christopher Nolan, even if its intellectual reach somewhat exceeds its grasp. 

AUDIENCE SCORE 99% want to see | Average Rating: 4.4/5 | User Ratings: 67,338 

In the future dust is everywhere which means folks with OCD will go nuts. ©Warner Brothers Pictures


By now most of you who have heard about the movie have seen the trailers and for those of you who are fans of Christopher Nolan you've probably read and or seen everything you can find on the internet about the movie. Good for you but you probably know that Nolan doesn't like to reveal much about his movie so you're still going to go to the cinemas wondering what Nolan has in store for you. And if you're still looking up stuff about this movie you'll also have read all the other critics reviews of Interstellar and you're getting the feeling that this is going to be a really, really good movie.

Well I'm not like all those critics, I'm basically your Average Joe that likes to watch movies and I don't really know how to write, review or critic like them. If you've been reading my reviews you'll notice that. Maybe.

A huge dust storm shows up and sirens go off but some people still don't care. ©Warner Brothers Pictures

Anyway, like I mentioned above if you're a fan and you've seen and read everything you're probably under the impression that it's a space action adventure/drama but one with a Christopher Nolan trademark storyline/twist, and you're right. But there's so much more.

The movie is about Coop played by Matthew McConnaughey who was once a test pilot for NASA but now is a farmer in some distant future. The earth of this future is bleak. Agricultural crops are dying because of something called the 'Blight' and the earth is turning into a dust bowl. Dust storms sweep the country so often everything inside and out is covered in dust.  People no longer trust in science to save the planet, school children are taught that the Apollo moon missions were just hoaxes perpetrated to destroy the Russian economy.

This is the coolest looking cockpit I've seen in a while. It moves! ©Warner Brothers Pictures

Coop does his best to manage his farm and his family. But there's something odd happening in his house and it involves his daughter. She's telling him that her room is haunted. During one particularly bad dust storm and a window in her room left open coincidentally the 'ghost' leaves it's mark in the form of bands of sand on the floor. Coop  throws the ghost explanation out the door and blames the event on a strange gravitational phenomena. The bands created by the 'gravitational anomaly' somehow turns out to be a binary code which translates to coordinates. So based on nothing but this very, very odd coincidence father and daughter get in their truck and head towards the coordinates. 

At the coordinates they find a relatively dust free fence with warning signs and one with NORAD printed on it. Coop gets out with some bolt cutters and just as he gets to the gate (where he can read the sign with NORAD on it) a light blinds him and the gates open. Before he gets a chance to do anything he gets tasered.

This is the first time that a wormhole is depicted differently, you should go watch this movie because of that. ©Warner Brothers Pictures

When he wakes he's in a storage area and being questioned by Anne Hathaway's character Amelia Brand. It's here that Coop finds out that NASA is still around and planning a way to save humanity. The plan is to send a crew out into space and head towards Saturn where somehow a wormhole has popped up. They believe that someone or something put it there just in time to save humanity. NASA has known about the worm-hole for almost 50 years ever since earths problems were starting. Since then they've sent probes out to check it out and after their data showed that there were earth-like planets on the other side of that worm-hole they've sent manned-solo missions to check out those earth-like planets to see which one really could sustain human life. So now they're planning on sending another crew out there to check up on those earlier missions to identify which planet is the best and prepare it for future missions. But they won't just be bringing equipment and provisions with them they'll also be bringing human eggs and sperm as Plan B which is the plan in the event that Plan A which is the mass exodus of humans to the planet they're heading for doesn't happen. 

So off they go towards Saturn and the wormhole and adventures unknown. I'll stop here and let find out what happens next for yourself. And trust me a lot happens. 

 See that little ball there? That's one of the earth-like planets they plan to visit. See that next to it? That's a 'gentle' black hole. ©Warner Brothers Pictures

What this spacehead thought about it...

Personally, I liked it. I really did. Of course I also liked the movie Contact (1997) which Interstellar producer Lynda Obst also worked on and there are bits of Contact in this movie. I also know from reading a number of critic's reviews that they too in general liked it. But critics are a different animal when compared to the general public and I can't help but think that Interstellar is not a movie for everyone.

If you read my ramblings up there you'd think that Interstellar is a movie about a crew who heads out into the unknown on a noble mission to save humanity and well that's true. You'd probably guess that they'll go through all sorts of hell to achieve their mission, also true. You'd expect there to be amazing visuals of space travel and alien planets and there are. But this movie really isn't about that. In that sense it's a lot like the movie Contact for me. Contact was generally liked by critics but everyone else had mixed thoughts about it. I think that's what will happen with Interstellar.

That pile of sticks there is a robot. Coolest and most unusual looking robot I've seen in a while. ©Warner Brothers Pictures

You can't go into this movie expecting an action adventure romp through space. You can't go into this movie without some knowledge or at least an awareness of interstellar space travels and all the theories that go with it. Quantum physics, Einsteins Theory of Relativity, The Einstein-Rosen Bridge, Astrophysics, Theoretical Physics, little bits from all these theories and ideas are used throughout the movie. Whether mentioned in expositions or dialogue or used visually, they are there and if you're don't know them then you're going to think this movie is just silly and ridiculous. But here's the thing if you can ignore all of that and look beyond all that what you'll get is a movie about the human condition, about our very human need to exist and continue by any means. The sci-fi bits are good and amazing to look at but let it distract you and you'll miss the point of the whole movie. 

Lets talk about the cast. Matthew McConnaughey is brilliant in this movie. I really liked his performance here. There's no other way to say it. In fact go read up what other critics say about him in this movie because I'm not good enough put it down. And he basically carried the movie for me, everyone else was good too but they were nowhere near as good.

This is another planet they visit and it's a cold one, cold enough to freeze clouds. ©Warner Brothers Pictures

The visuals are amazing. I would have loved to have caught it on IMAX but I didn't and I wasn't disappointed. Every scene in space looks amazing and the earth-like planets look amazing.

But like I said the visuals and the science aren't the main point of this movie, you have to look past that and you have to have the patience to look for it. I sat there in that cinema full of people who came into that movie expecting more of what they saw in the trailer and quite a few of them I would say had different expectations. I looked around a few times and spotted several people asleep or nodding off, those that didn't looked bored or confused. This movie will test your patience and expectations, it will also test your intellect. If you don't have any of those or aren't interested in the science involved then you will be disappointed. If you are you will be rewarded with an interesting and thoughtful movie that will make your head think about all sorts of things. 

Meanwhile back on earth things are going up in flames. ©Warner Brothers Pictures

Well that's my rambling review and opinion of this movie. Like I said I liked it but I don't think this is a movie everyone will enjoy or understand not even for hardcore Nolan fans. I give this movie a good 3.9 out of 5. Seriously Google Interstellar and read what the critics say because I share their opinions, mostly.



1 comment:

  1. Interstellar a great movie of space colonization for the humankind´s future