A Very Nice Space Odyssey: A Review of Interstellar

Unnumbered Movie Review #3

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My roommate and I were talking about movies the other day and he asked me if I’d seen Interstellar. When I told him I hadn’t he was shocked. I told him that it didn’t look very good and that I’d heard that the entire conflict of the movie is resolved by the characters relying on the power of love (which still is sort of half true), and that that’s a plot device I’m not too fond of. My roommate laughed at me and told me to just watch it.

Well, nameless roommate person, I finally watched Interstellar and I decided to review it.

 

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For those who don’t know, Interstellar came out in 2014 and was directed by Christopher Nolan and stars Matthew Mcconaughey, Anne Hathaway, and Matt Damon. Interstellar tells the story of A NASA Pilot turned farmer who is recruited to lead a mission across the universe to save the human race from extinction.

I would like to start of by saying, yes, I was very wrong about this movie. This is obviously a fantastic movie. The cast is superb, Matthew Mcconaughey, Anne Hathaway, Matt Damon, David Oyelowo, Jessica Chastain, and Michael Caine were all fantastic, even Mackenzie Foy as young Murph was great. Hans Zimmer’s score is so deep and emotional and profound and the special effects are breathtaking. Among Christopher Nolan’s film I might rank this movie as one of the highest.

Overall, the movie was very captivating. It pulls at your heartstrings and really makes you think but there are some plot holes that bothered me. Like when Cooper (Mcconaughey’s character) is communicating with his daughter through the 4th dimensional tesseract, how does she figure out that it is him who is trying to communicate with her? She sort of figures it out for no real reason other than to move the plot along.

Also there is the whole issue of the power of love solving the character’s problems. This also happens when Cooper is in the 4th dimensional tesseract, which is basically every moment in time of one bedroom represented in physical space. Cooper is floating through this physical representation and he has to find one exact moment Murph will be in the bedroom. He has no chance of finding her but he relies on the power of love because earlier in the film Brand (Anne Hathway) hypothesizes that love could be some 4th dimensional force that shapes their lives and then, voila, he finds her. This is a nice idea, but to me it just seems like sloppy story telling.

But the movie isn’t all bad, it is very epic in scope. The character’s travel across the universe to save humanity from extinction, many times along the way almost losing any chance of survival. And with this grand scope Nolan is giving us a message about the future of humanity. He is showing us where we are as a species and what we have to do to sustain ourselves. There is no doubt that the situation humanity finds itself in this movie is a situation that we could end up in and Nolan is perhaps suggesting what humanity should do to sustain itself. By way of this fantastic narrative Nolan is telling us that not only for us to survive but also for the human race to progress we have to focus our energies on a more meaningful goal lest we find ourselves going extinct.

Now, when I say that this movie is epic in scope I’m trying to say that this movie feels like a great odyssey, or like a…. space odyssey. But seriously, another thing I couldn’t help but notice was how profound an influence 2001: A Space Odyssey had on this movie. Even besides the fact that they are both science fiction movies set in space, the last act of each movie plays out relatively similarly. The main character gets warped through time and space, goes to a different dimension, and is guided by a higher beings. Both of these things happen in each movie and although this is quite a simplistic explanation of each movie, it is still technically correct.

Luckily, though, I think most of this movie is very different from 2001: A Space Odyssey. This is definitely a movie of this era and it’s definitely its own movie and really the bottom line is that it was very entertaining.

I’d recommend this movie to anyone who thinks that maybe they aren’t going to like it and anybody who is tired of the ‘love conquers all’ cliché; I think you’re going to enjoy more than you expect.

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2 thoughts on “A Very Nice Space Odyssey: A Review of Interstellar”

    1. I never had that problem with 2001, besides being visually and aurally fascinating I have always found it just simply fascinating. The meaning behind the story is really what interests me though. As for Interstellar I agree that the opening act is the weakest part of the movie but I wouldn’t ignore it’s importance to the overall story. The first time I watched it I saw it as sort of a commentary on our current global political climate. Thanks for reading!

      Liked by 1 person

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