Interstellar

I was discussing the new movie Interstellar with a friend last night, so I thought it was time I put down some thoughts on the subject.

I really, really, really, wanted this movie to blow my mind. Unfortunately, my mind is still intact. There are just a few too many inconsistencies in the story (and I am not talking about the awesome effects of gravity on time, etc.), and most are things that would have been very easy to fix. For example:

The basic arc of the story is the earth is dying; the food supply is dwindling, and with it, the population. Ultimately, mankind will become a casualty. In the movie, the daughter of Matthew McConoughey’s character (Cooper) — now a grown woman — is having a discussion with a man, and drinking from a fast-food cup with a lid and straw.  Really? The world is dying, you have no food, but some company is expending resources to make fast-food cups? No. This would not happen.

But there is quite a bit that is very good about the movie — especially the depiction of the space colony that Cooper returns to after entering the black hole (an awesome bit of real science meeting CGI thanks to the work of Kip Thorn). The idea of a cylindrical space station/colony/ship has been described in innumerable sic-fi novels, and here it was on the big screen! For about 5 minutes. Ugh.  I would have preferred the first 3rd of the movie — all dust, corn, and pickup trucks — be traded for a more extensive portrayal of life aboard this futuristic colony.

Finally, there was just some plain weird parts — that seemed to be contrived to inject some conflict into the storyline.  The whole Matt Damon sequence was just strange.  Beautifully shot, and a fantastic depiction of what an outpost on a frozen extrasolar world might look like — but the story…I don’t know.  And was their some hidden meaning to naming an astronaut/scientist who fakes his data “Dr. Mann”?

I’m going to need to see Interstellar again. This is one of those movies that deserves a second look. But right now, the best I can do is rate it 2 rocket ships out of 4.

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