This hugely-hyped, so-called “intellectual” blockbuster is being touted as the space film of the year, or decade. It was even on the cover of Time magazine! Yet it is an extremely loud (Hans Zimmer’s music has never been so over-blown) mishmash of incomprehensible physicist lingo, post-ecological nightmare and soppy father/daughter melodrama. And it goes on for an exhausting almost three hours.
In a nutshell, it’s the odyssey of an ex-astronaut who must go on a space mission – leaving his family on the dying earth – to find possible solutions for humanity’s survival on other planets or galaxies. A complex and noble thought, but this time the director has bitten off more than he can chew, and it’s indigestible.
Let’s just call it “the emperor’s new clothes”, for it’s made by the clever, innovative (Memento and Inception) and successful (the later Batman series) Christopher Nolan, the darling of many awed critics. And it has Oscar laureates Matthew McConaughey, Anne Hathaway, Michael Caine and mere nominee Jessica Chastain: a dream team that is being highly promoted by its studio.
Oh for the grandeur, ingenuity, yet tranquility of Alfonso Cuaron’s Gravity, or the thrills and humanity of Ron Howard’s Apollo 13. Now those were lucid, exhilarating space films. If you are wondering about Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey, I was never a starry-eyed fan.
(Photo by Fox-Warner)
Neptune Ravar Ingwersen reviews film extensively for publications in Germany and Switzerland. She views 4 to 8 films a week and her aim is to sort the wheat from the chaff for readers.