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A Reel Life film section

Issue: Spring 2014

Interstellar (2014) movie review

Finite Future

Interstellar deals with a near future in which the earth has turned against us and the very dirt we grew our food in fills the air in ruinous dust clouds. Matthew McConaughey's character is an ex NASA pilot who has been forced to become a farmer, like almost everyone else left in the world, and puts his engineering knowledge to good use in reclaiming electronics and mechanical parts to run or automate farm equipment.

A mysterious message relayed in an unexplainable manner leads the protagonist to discover some of his old NASA colleagues working in secret. The mission is to save the last of humankind by leaving the planet, aided by a wormhole that "someone" seems to have established and made stable just near Saturn, giving humankind access to another galaxy containing life supporting worlds.

movie poster, Interstellar, Festivale film review; 220x331

Movie poster, Interstellar

The resulting adventure explores the human spirit of exploration, the desperation of near extinction of the human race, and some fascinating ideas about the human Singularity and space time. There's betrayal, a few surprises, lots of adventure and some incredibly epic space scenes, reminiscent and surpassing Stanley Kubrik's 2001. There are a few nods to the classics scattered around the film too, like the fact that the sentient robots in the film are essentially mobile monoliths.

It's worth seeing on the IMAX screen alone as having been filmed specifically with that tech in mind, the visuals fill the place from floor to ceiling and wall to wall with no cropping, and it looks amazing.

Unfortunately the film falls down in its story and character development. There are great ideas and great actors, but loosely strung together with unresolved or nonsensical and unnecessary plot elements just to tie things together. It's also incredibly long - so long in fact that the IMAX seats become decidedly uncomfortable.

All in all it's an enjoyable film to watch though surprisingly for science fiction the required suspension of disbelief is required more for the characters than the story. The space scenes are genuinely epic and Interstellar explores some really interesting ideas - but be prepared for a seriously long haul, emphasised at times by some pretty poor quality dialogue.

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by Toby Tremayne
Web: Blog: Writing: Skype: lyricist1 Twitter: @magicindustries

Australian release 2014
For credits and official site details, see below
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Just the facts:

Title: Interstellar (2014)
Written by: Christopher Nolan & Jonathan Nolan
Directed by: Christopher Nolan
Running time: 169 mins

The Players: Matthew McConaughey, Anne Hathaway, Wes Bentley, Michael Caine, Ellen Burstyn, John Lithgow, William Devane, Matt Damon

Official website:
IMDb entry

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