Monday, 24 November 2014


Interstellar, 2014
Directed by Christopher Nolan

Much of Interstellar is left to secrecy. I mean, what would be the point of an almost 3 hour movie if we knew generally what happens or even what it's about?

Interstellar, at it's very most basic, is about Earth, and it's decay, and about a group of people who leave it to find the people of Earth a new home. It involves space travel, worm holes and a lot of science.

Coop is a single father of two. A farmer since the world started running out of food, but a pilot and almost astronaut before that, Coop is always look up at the sky above him. His daugher Murph, too, is fascinated by science and space and the ghost that she claims haunts her bedroom. But Coop gets called into action when he gets recruited by NASA to go on a trip to find Earth a new home. There's a wormhole near Saturn that leads to another galaxy with planets with the potential for life. And Coop is the only person they know who has actually flown a spaceship. Heartbroken about leaving his kids, Coop sets out on this adventure, but vows to return, no matter what.

Matthew McConaughey was wonderful as Coop. Is he not the master of crying? His crying scenes are always so killer, and I know I teared up every time he did. The scene where he watches video messages from his son is so emotional and powerful. McConaughey really nails everything he does, and this film is no exception. Incredibly believable as loving and devoted father, desperate to return home to his children, and a man conflicted with the choices he is given. However, McConaughey is not the only one who stands out in this film, though I'd argue he gives the best performance here.

Anne Hathaway is also fantastic as Dr Brand. She is able to balance all the difference layers she is given, whether emotional, strong and professional, she gives everything. The hate people have for Anne Hathaway is something I have never understood, and still don't. She's incredibly talented, and while I wouldn't say she deserves an Oscar nomination for her work here, it is still solid work.

I won't spoil anything about Jessica Chastain, but she too, as always, gives a great performance. Really, can she give a bad performance? While her part is not as large as McConaughey or Hathaway, she still gives a great performance here. As well, there is such an incredibly supporting cast of Michael Caine, Mackenzie Foy (fantastic as Murph), Casey Affleck, Wes Bentley and Matt Damon.

Hans Zimmer, naturally, scored this film. And his work here blew me away. I had been expecting something along the lines of his work for Batman or Inception, but it was great to hear something different. Indeed, it was more celestial and classical. It was chaotic when it needed to be, and was reminiscent of classical music while spinning through the galaxies. It was great to hear something different, and Zimmer really did great work here.

Also, this is Nolan's only second film not to have Wally Pfister as cinematographer, as Pfister was busy filming Transcendence at the time. However, getting Hoyte Van Hoytema was a fantastic choice. The film looked different from Nolan's other films, and I thought Hoytema's work was a perfect fit for this film. It was beautifully shot and I'd love for Nolan to work with him again in the future. The cinematography here was stunning and was perfect for the feel of the film.

Interstellar is far from a perfect film. It's complex in plot, and it's science is head-spinning and sometimes hard to understand. There were parts where things weren't explained that well or just skimmed the details. Things sometimes got convoluted, and while I understand what Nolan was going for, and why he did what he did, things often got a little too bizarre, was a bit too much of stretch, or was just starting to slip from control. There's the scene near the ending (movie watchers will know which one I mean), that feels like it's just gone too far. It's pretty ridiculous and was a bit of mess. It made next to no sense, and while I like the thought behind it, it was just too far.

The problems I had with this movie are much like the ones I had with Inception. Both have extremely strict rules for some things, but other things, for whatever reason, aren't as strict and are flexible, all of which is inconsistent with each other. Some things are explained deeply, with rich detail. Other things are just skimmed over with little explanation, even though they play a large part in the overall story. However, like Inception, this doesn't make it a bad film! In fact, I enjoyed Interstellar very much, it just makes it more flawed than it could've been.

And at it's core, past the science and space travel, it's the story about a father and a daughter. It's about the power of love and the heart. And this is what the film is really about and what makes the film as good as it is. We all have people we love, and people we would do anything for. It's what makes us connect and relate to this film about worm holes and foreign galaxies and space travel.


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