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MOVIE REVIEW: FTN reviews Interstellar

November 5th, 2014 by Marc Comments

Interstellar (12a)
Directed by: Christopher Nolan
Starring: Matthew McConaughey, Anne Hathaway, Jessica Chastain
running time: 169 min

A group of explorers make use of a newly discovered wormhole to surpass the limitations on human space travel and conquer the vast distances involved in an interstellar voyage.

Interstellar is a complex tale of love, life, the universe and everything from the man who brought us the Dark Knight Trilogy and Inception. And it will stand as one of his most complete works, although it is still a bit messy  in the final act.

Kicking off, the world, at some undisclosed point in the future, is dying. Crops will no longer grow, everything is covered in dust and there has been a substantial reduction in the population. It’s a time when technology is defunct and the world relies on farmers – the last chance to keep humanity alive.

We are introduced to Cooper (McConaughey) an ex-test pilot who is now a farmer and father to two children, Murphy (a stunning performance from MacKenzie Foy) and Tom (Timothée Chalamet) who is struggling to survive on growing the last crop that will thrive on earth – corn. When Murphy stumbles upon co-ordinates to a well kept secret, she and Cooper discover mankind’s last hope for survival… a plan to send astronauts into a wormhole in the hope that they can find a planet that mankind can live on, a plan on which Cooper is now the great hope as he is possibly the best pilot still alive in a world that no-longer thinks it needs them.

Nolan has created a beautiful movie that centres on mankind’s survival instinct and just how far we, as a species and as individuals, will go to survive. The look of the movie on earth is unique and so oppressive – covered in dust and very, very isolated, this is a world that truly feels like it is on its last legs and for the first act it’s close on unbearable just how bleak this world is. You truly get the impression that those left alive are simply putting time in until the end, whatever it may be.

However, it’s when the movie moves off planet that it truly becomes astonishing. Nolan truly conveys the size and terror of the universe, the black void, the  emptiness and the bravery that it would take to leave behind a world for the uncertainty of such a trip, even when the fate of mankind sits on your shoulders it’s a terrifying prospect.

But despite scenes that make Gravity look low budget and an epic scale that sees the universe open before us, Christopher and Jonathan Nolan have written a heart-aching tale of a man who just wants to get back to his little girl and, despite the shear expanse of the movie and the dense science behind it – trust me, Einstein would have to rewatch this when the science of space travel and relativity kick in, but never fear, it may be dense but it’s never less that entertaining – it’s the small scenes on cooper’s farm that are the beating heart of the movie, asking the question why should mankind survive if it’s not for family and love?

Certain to divide many, the final act is a mess, but it’s a glorious mess that does tie into the overall themes and point of the movie, even if it might leave some a little cold. A bold movie, it never feels its three hour running time, even if it could do with some trimming to help the odd pacing issue.

To really talk about this movie would be to spoil it, there are so many things I want to talk to you about but I can’t and for that reason alone you must see this movie; because in a couple of weeks everyone is going to be talking about it.

The Nolans have scripted a movie that aspires to be this generation’s 2001 and it may just succeed, but it might take a few years for people to fully realise it. A movie that demands to be watched and rewatched, it’s a beautiful, life-affirming, tear-jerking, often funny and always gripping event. And that, surely, is to be celebrated?

It may just be 2014’s truly unmissable movie.

4.5 out of 5 Nerds 

Marc is a self-confessed nerd. Ever since seeing Star Wars for the first time around 1979 he’s been an unapologetic fan of the Wars and still believes, with Clone Wars and now Underworld, we are yet to see the best Star Wars. He’s a dad of two who now doesn’t have the time (or money) to collect the amount of toys, comics, movies and books he once did, much to the relief of his long-suffering wife. In the real world he’s a graphic designer. He started Following the Nerd because he was tired of searching a million sites every day for all the best news that he loves and decided to create one place where you can go to get the whole lot. Secretly he longs to be sitting in the cockpit of his YT-1300 Corellian Transport ship with his co-pilot Chewie, roaming the universe, waiting for his next big adventure, but feels just at home watching cartoons with his kids….