When it comes to Christopher Nolan films, you always know there is something much deeper than what posters and trailers suggest. When the production pictures and posters started to surface for INTERSTELLAR, aside from the ‘space’ side to the movie, not much was given away. The same goes for when the teaser and full trailers were released; it gave you some idea of what we’d be in for as a viewer and as the short synopsis below explains, this is pretty much all we know.
A team of explorers travel through a wormhole in an attempt to find a potentially habitable planet that will sustain humanity.
Some glimpses in the trailers tell us that Earth is in trouble and that a space expedition is launched in order to find a new planet for humans to live on. We don’t know the year, but again glimpses in the full trailers suggest it is some time in the future. Personally, I am a big fan of Christopher Nolan (mainly thanks to his take on the Dark Knight with his BATMAN trilogy and INCEPTION), so getting to see this on the big screen — unfortunately not in IMAX — I was pretty excited, to say the least.
This is going to be one of those movies that is hard to explain without spoiling anything and can be interpreted in many different ways. I’ll start this by saying that I found the movie excellent right up until the very end, where I found the ending really let the movie fall flat to me, but it depends on how deep you want to look into it. You could liken it to the way INCEPTION ended; in true Christopher Nolan style, INTERSTELLAR does play with your head a little.
We are introduced straight away to Cooper (Matthew McConaughey), who once was a NASA pilot and is now a widowed farmer living with his father-in-law Donald (John Lithgow) and two children, Tom and Murph. Murph claims there to be a ghost in her bedroom, and although she isn’t scared of this ‘ghost’, she tries to explain its existence with science. Due to a gravitational anomaly in Murph’s bedroom, Cooper and Murph discover a set of co-ordinates that could lead to an explanation for this ‘ghost’. What they discover upon their arrival is a secret NASA base that are using the area to start a space exploration in attempt to find a new planet that humans can survive on. Cooper makes the hard decision to leave his family behind knowing he may never see them again. This in turn kicks off the rest of the movie, and it’s a long one, so be prepared for the long haul.
Like I said above, it’s hard to say too much more than that as I don’t want to spoil anything for anyone. For the scientific bods out there, you’re in for a feast here, that’s for sure. Also, I would say it helps going in watching the movie with some basic understanding of science — more specifically, relativity and time, as the more you go into the movie, the more it can seem confusing.
The cast are terrific throughout; I could even stand Anne Hathaway, who normally I don’t like. Matthew McConaughey was fantastic as the lead giving a solid all-round performance, and I must admit I’d be surprised if he did not win any awards with INTERSTELLAR. Rounding up the main cast are Michael Caine and John Lithgow. There’s some extended cameos from a couple of familiar faces, but I won’t say who as I went into the movie not knowing myself.
Visually, the movie is stunning! I can only imagine what it would look like at the IMAX. And the sound mix, wow! It sounded amazing in the cinema. There have been some complaints by movie goers that the soundtrack is so loud, that it drowns out dialogue throughout the movie. Christopher Nolan has not ignored this, and has come out to say that this was intentional. A quick search and you’ll find his response as to why he’s chosen to do what he has done. The movie itself is, as I said above, fantastic right up until the last 20-25 minutes. There are some fantastic sequences where the tension amplifies to the max and there are some real heart-wrenching and emotional scenes, as well as some good light-hearted moments. The main problem for me was the conclusion; I won’t say too much as I don’t want to spoil anything for anyone nor ruin it. It’s open to many different interpretations, but for me I just found it did not work. I think it all depends on how deep you want to go with it.
However, I will end this by simply saying that INTERSTELLAR is a must-watch movie which needs to be seen on the big screen. You’re best going into the movie really knowing as little as possible, and making your own mind up on what you think of it. For me, this will be an instant purchase on Blu-ray when it finds its home release next year.