by Stephen Jordan
Well, this may very well be the most ambitious film of the year.
I had only seen a couple of trailers for the movie, no TV spots or anything else. I didn’t know much about the film itself. I’ve heard a couple of reviews, checked it’s rating on Rotten Tomatoes, and saw that it was getting generally positive reviews. But nothing astronomical, like The Dark Knight, or even Inception. So I tempered my expectations. Because I’m not a Nolan fanboy, and honestly, I do not like The Dark Knight Rises. After seeing that movie several times, it just doesn’t work for me anymore. So I was prepared to dump all my preconceived notions and accept whatever the movie gave me, which is exactly what I did.
Matthew McConaughey plays Cooper, a man who used to be an astronaut but it so relegated to farming, which he has begrudgingly gotten used to. Apparently, in this film version of Earth, the planet is losing resources, like food and water and such. So rather than exploring space, spending millions of dollars to travel the galaxy, the whole world has decided that farming and agriculture is much more important to humanity’s safety and survival.
Cooper stumbles upon a few mysterious “happenings” in and around his farmland. This leads to him stumbling upon coordinates to a secret location…stuff is revealed…he ends up on a mission to travel through space again, hoping to find the answer to humanity’s problem. I’m being vague on purpose here, the less you know, the better.
I thoroughly enjoyed the film from beginning to end. Matthew is fantastic, not surprisingly, as is Anne Hathaway, Jessica Chastain, and a number of other actors. Solid performances across the board. The special effects…people, you need to see this in IMAX. I did, and holy shit, it is absolutely stunning. The visuals and cinematography are breathtakingly beautiful: the price of the ticket is worth it just for this alone. SOUND DESIGN, my God! You will feel the entire theater rumbling to the point that the noise even becomes a bit abrasive.
You get to see a spacecraft traveling through a black hole, and it’s so dope. Sights and images you’ve never seen on film, at least not done like this. There is one specific planet they arrive on, which is essentially comprised of nothing but water. Off in the distance, are what first appear to be mountains, but are actually gigantic tidal waves. Growing and growing and growing…I can’t spoil it. It’s so amazing and pulse pounding.
Now, a lot of people are having problems with the third act. The movie does indeed emphasize the science-FICTION in the last third. So be warned. I was just in awe that they even took it that far, my mind was blown; it is a complete mind-fuck. I liked it, I have to disagree with people saying the films reach exceeds its grasp. I think it ultimately nailed what it set out to do. That being said, I only saw it once, and I JUST left the theater about an hour ago. Given some time and a few more viewings, my feelings may change.
However, I can confidently say this Interstellar is an extremely well made film and it is equally engaging, surprising and entertaining. Furthermore, it is emotional. The idea of time being relative, characters aging at a different rate in space than those on Earth, and having to communicate with loved ones through videos…you can put it all together, right? It’s going to tug at your heart-strings. But it works.
Anyway! Well-directed, well-acted, awesome visuals, I even liked the music, big ups to Hans Zimmer. I enjoyed it. I’d recommend seeing it for yourself.