Posted under: Interstellar
If you didn't already know - maybe you've been living in a box for the past few years - Christopher Nolan is directing the project. Now, if you thought his last film - Inception - was mind-boggling then just wait until you watch Interstellar. You can kid yourself during the film, stuffing popcorn into your face, thinking you understand it but, let's face it, it's confusing as sh*t.
Set somewhere in America, in the not-too-distant future, Interstellar finds our protagonist in Matthew McConaughey's ex-NASA text pilot and physicist Cooper. After dust has swooped in and claimed the Earth, slowly suffocating and killing off all plans life, food becomes scarce, and he turns to cater for a farm.
However, when gravity anomalies appear in his daughter Murph's (Mackenzie Foy) room, he is soon led to an old acquaintance (Sir Michael Caine), who has secretly been running NASA and developing a way to save the Earth. The mission involves going into space and heading though a wormhole - that has somehow appeared out of nowhere - and finding an inhabitable planet that can sustain life and provide a home for the deteriorating population: "Makind was born on Earth. It wasn't meant to die here."
When Cooper is given the tough choice of leaving his children and everything on Earth for a bleak mission into the unknown where the outcome is uncertain, he hangs on to the miniscule chance of saving the ones he loves and is soon interstellar, racing against time and the odds to make sure that he fulfills the mission but also the promise he makes Murph; that he will return.
I can't lie and say that I've seen every single Nolan film released. I haven't. However, from the ones that I have seen, they're awesome. He always has a clever idea up his sleeve and knows how to deliver a mass spectacle that is sure to hit. Has he done that with Interstellar? Well, yes and no. It's a hit and a miss. Is it what I was expecting? Kind of. Does it still satisfy the insatiable maw of hype? Kind of. It has moments and qualities that I LOVED but also ones that I maybe wasn't too fond of.
The first hour and a half of this is just amazing! We really get to know Cooper and his family - his twinkly 10-year old daughter (Mackenzie Foy), his 15-year old son Tom (Timothée Chalamat) and his father-in-law Donald (John Linlithgow) - and it does a very nice job of setting up the scene for the remaining hour or so. However, as soon as we get into the film's second act, that's when things heat up and begin to fall apart.
It's a very complex film. The difference between Interstellar and Inception - in terms of story - is that if you pay attention to everything said in Inception it can certainly be understood. Not with Interstellar. This is complicated and really demands your attention. I commend it for doing so but it can just become too knotty at times and can get a bit too messy.
However, if you're good with your science and your physics then this will be as easy as time dilation for you, which I'm sure will make it a better overall film. The science in this, of course, is sound. The characters try their best to explain it as best as possible and whilst some things make sense, a lot of it is baffling. Everything, all the ideas, are based on REAL facts and theories which is quite scary but mind-blowing when you watch the events unfold and really ponder on it. For example, 1 hour on one planet can equate to 7 years back on Earth.
That's space for you, folks.
Whilst I managed to comprehend a decent chunk of the plot, I'm not too sharp with my relativity and quantum mechanics meaning that I was quickly lost for a good portion of the runtime. The film clocks in at just under 3 hours and considering it's so meaty, the last two thirds become tedious and somewhat boring if you don't have an idea of what's happening.
As for the finale of Interstellar, that really is an absolute mindf*ck, plus it dragged on. I think that the film was already long enough, without the unnecessary added 10 minutes at the end. I can see why they were there - to wrap things up - but it still doesn't do much about explaining things.
Still, there's a lot of good things going for this film too. It looks GORGEOUS on-screen. The visuals were spectacular, as expected, and some of the sequences literally made my jaw-drop. It all looks and feels so real, from barren and bleak shots of a scarred Earth to the silence and serenity of the mighty space, the effects in this film are breathtaking.
As far as casting goes, the acting, all around, is pretty much flawless. Everyone is stunning and deliver such solid and passionate performances. However, it's McConaughey, to no one's surprise, that is the standout here as he gives one of his strongest performances to date. It's made even more remarkable with some of his quieter, more emotional scenes with Foy as Murph - the older version played by Jessica Chastain (the family aspect in Interstellar is superb). There's also a great surprise appearance from a big actor, mid-way through the film but I don't want to spoil who it is so go see the film for yourself.
Of course, as is with any major sci-fi film, you need a robot and Bill Irwin's TARS is the one in Interstellar and that character was a pleasant surprise for me. He's one of the highlights of the film, lightening the mood occasionally and just popping in light humour here and there to brighten up the atmosphere.
I liked Interstellar. I didn't LOVE it. It was very interesting and I liked what I could understand. However, I do agree with most people by saying that it is, for sure, a must-see film. It's not best movie of the year quality, maybe not even Oscar-worthy but it's still one of these movies that gets everyone talking and that everyone needs to have their own opinion of.
Go see it.
Interstellar is Christopher Nolan's most beautiful, most interesting film to date. However, with such large ambitious and complexity, it loses itself.
It's a hit but a miss too.
About the Author
Founder of Oasis Awais, and avid lover of life, Awais Irfan's love of writing and film is unequivocal. Ever since he was a little kid, he has loved the cinematic experience; so much so, he is studying Film Production in Glasgow and hopes to be the next "big thing" in directing.