Movie Review – Interstellar (2014)


Movie Synopsis:

Sometime in the near future, humanity is seeing the earth around them dying as a planet.  Crops are not able to grow in the harsh climate, wind storms are destroying the land and creating food shortages and health problems for the human race, and there is not much hope for the future.  Cooper, former astronaut turned farmer, is trying to eek out an existence with his daughter, son, and father, when he is given an opportunity to save the human race by piloting a small group of explorers into space on a secret mission to try and find a new planet for the human race.  A black hole exists beyond Saturn which will take them to another galaxy where there is possibility of another home.  But the mission is dangerous and he must leave his family behind to save the wider species.

Movie Review:

This film was definitely envisioned to be an epic by director and writer Christopher Nolan.  Although it definitely had its moments of grandeur, and had some glorious overall themes and visual effects, there were a couple of key components where the film fell short.  Interstellar was fascinating but certainly didn’t meet the high bar set by space themed movie Gravity from last year.  The visual effects, particularly the scenes in space, were fantastic.  Shots of the black hole, the new planets, and Saturn were magnificent.  There were also some wonderful overall themes discussed, which touched on humanity, morality, and the future.  Furthermore, the character development between the principal characters was well thought out, and some great acting performances by a stellar cast was critical to this film’s enjoyment.  What detracted from the film however was the fact that in an attempt to be grand and epic, the director and producers decided that length = epic.  The question I had at times during the film were “where have all the editors gone?”  There were many scenes that could have been reduced or even cut for time.  Lots of scenes filled with scientific jargon could have been reduced without impact on 99% of the audience, and some scenes didn’t seem to really advance the plot or characters.  The feel of the movie was quite slow at times, which reminded the viewer of Contact, a similar space-themed movie from the 1990s which was also billed as epic but fell short due to similar issues.  Although I enjoyed the film in several respects, this issue was the main reason for a less than stellar ranking.

Overall: 3 stars out of 5 stars