Friday, November 7, 2014

Interstellar: Inception in Space

On the most part, Interstellar was another Nolan movie that blew me away.  Most of the science was spot-on, and the story was incredible.  The music was the typical Zimmer awesomeness, and the acting was good.

In Interstellar, the Earth is dying, and Cooper, played by Matthew McConaughey, is sent to find a new planet suitable to support human life.  I can't say too much more without spoiling it, but just like in Inception, my mind was blown.

The special effects were nearly perfect.  The journey through a wormhole and near a black hole look just like the simulations mathematicians and scientists provide.  The gigantic waves as you see in the trailer look remarkably real.  The dust storms on Earth are convincingly scary.  The spaceship mechanics all look to be correct.  In short, everything looks real and scientifically correct.

The music was amazing.  The use of organ adds a new instrument to the Hollywood orchestra, paying homage to Richard Strauss's Also Sprach Zarathustra, the main theme from 2001: A Space Odyssey.  The organ also nearly quotes from Philip Glass's Koyaanisqatsi in some key emotional moments.  During the early scenes as the spaceship first launches and goes through docking procedures, the music echoes Johann Strauss's waltzes as used in 2001 in similar scenes.

I only have one complaint with the music.  Many times it was just TOO LOUD.  I found myself frustrated several times when a character was saying something dramatic or important, but I couldn't hear it over the music.

As I mentioned before, the science is mostly accurate.  I was impressed with their treatment of Relativity and not messing anything up.  The only thing that wasn't quite right was the whole idea of solving some equation.  That was nothing more than Hollywood drama, but considering they got a lot of everything else right, I'm not going to complain much.

One last complaint ... somewhere in the middle of the film, events unfolded on Earth in an unconvincing manner.  Several characters' motivations seemed to be in conflict and their development wasn't entirely convincing.  In one particular scene, I was thinking, "Why is everyone being so melodramatic?"  It was almost like a scene from Signs.

Then again, character consistency hasn't always been a Nolan specialty.  Once the film got past a particular point, each character seemed to settle and I could enjoy the ending.  Then the Nolan brothers more than redeemed themselves.

My suggestion: go watch this movie in IMAX and enjoy.

One last bit of trivia: Does that rectangular robot (in the trailer at 1:22) remind you of anything?  Its dimensions appear to be very close to 1 by 4 by 9.

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