Possible spoilers ahead!
If you go by the trailers and TV spots, then you expect Christopher Nolan’s “Interstellar” to be about a small group of astronauts who travel to the other end of the galaxy to find a new home to replace humanity’s dying home-world. But that’s only part of the story, there’s a lot more than meets the eye when it comes to Christopher Nolan’s latest epic adventure.
This movie is frantically busy and at times ear-splitting loud. The music is even louder when its trying to drum up the excitement level in scenes that does not need it.. “Interstellar” features main characters spitting out exposition at record levels, and a few expendable characters who are there only for techno-babble and philosophical debate. Hey, you have to do something to fill a 163 minute movie.
And yet “Interstellar” is still an impressive film in many ways. There’s a lot to like in this movie. For instance: The planets the astronauts visit look amazing, and as the viewer you truly buy into the settings.
The special effects are top-notch throughout the film. I particularly liked the water planet the astronauts first encounter. Nolan’s take on a space station is also very imaginative. The space travel stuff is some of the best I’ve seen in a long while.
The acting in “Interstellar” is as good as you would expect. The funny thing is two of the most memorable characters are actually quadrilateral-shaped robots, TARS and CASE, voiced by Bill Irwin and Josh Stewart respectively.
As for the humans, Matthew McConaughey as widowed astronaut Cooper and Anne Hathaway as his colleague Amelia Brand both earning high marks. Both characters are likeable and relatable. Michael Caine and Jessica Chastain were quite good too (no surprise there). However, if you ask me, Mackenzie Foy as Copper’s young daughter Murphy, had the standout performance in this movie.
Copper’s daughter Murphy (or “Murph”) has been observing ghostly signs in her bedroom, including coordinates that leads her and Cooper to what remains of NASA. Here, Cooper is asked by a NASA scientist (Michael Caine) to lead the mission to search for new planets. Murphy doesn’t want Cooper to leave, and she even shows him a Morse code message on her bookshelf that spells ”STAY.’ Murph pleads with her dad to do just that. Cooper of course decides to go.
Sadly, in a film that runs almost three hours, Christopher Nolan devotes only a few moments to Cooper’s decision to abandon his family. Quite frankly, I wanted to see more of the family drama on earth. But as I said earlier, this movie has a ton going on so some of the better stuff probably had to be cut.
This movie is definitely trying to tell us something, what exactly, I don’t know. With so much stuff going on, I couldn’t figure out what the main message was. I’m guessing “Interstellar” is about human’s survival instinct, but only Christopher Nolan knows for sure.
What I do know is that “Interstellar” would have been better had it been split into two movies: The first film could have been based entirely on earth, exploring what is causing earth’s decay in more detail. Meanwhile the second film could have been the actual mission in space, with more time to explore more planets.
Christopher Nolan always makes big movies, and he never makes the safe bet movie (if that makes sense). Nolan is always taking chances with his films, and I like that. But making a film about a father-daughter relationship may be Nolan’s biggest gamble yet. The bottom line is this: “Interstellar” is a good movie, but not a great one. And it’s definitely not Christopher Nolan’s best film.
“Interstellar” final score: 7