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Interstellar

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Interstellar

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Synopsis:

In an unspecified year in the future, crop blight has caused widespread food shortages. Intelligence and job specialization are no longer priorities, and dust storms wreak havoc throughout the world. Former NASA pilot Cooper (Matthew McConaughey) runs a farm with his father-in-law, son, and 10-year-old daughter, Murphy. Through a series of unlikely events, Cooper and Murphy stumble upon the last NASA base still in service, hidden deep in the woods. There, they meet an astrophysicist only introduced as “Professor Brand” (Michael Caine) and his daughter Amelia (Anne Hathaway), who eventually convince Cooper to captain a space mission through a wormhole to another galaxy, with the purpose of finding a new, more hospitable planet for human life to survive on.

Review:

I would highly recommend Interstellar to anyone above the age of ten. I threw myself at Interstellar with very little knowledge of the film’s story and setting, a film-watching strategy that I would recommend to anyone considering viewing this movie. Of course, I did not need to know the story to be excited about this movie. Just the description of it being a “Futuristic space epic directed by Christopher Nolan” was enough to have me foaming at the mouth. After the cast announcement, I was practically rabid with anticipation. Matthew McConaughey in the lead role? Amazing. (Before Dallas Buyer’s Club I may not have had the same enthusiasm, but Matthew has really impressed me lately.) Michael Caine is involved? Beautiful. (This is his 6th appearance in a Nolan-directed film since 2005.) So by the time the trailers had ended, and the theatre lights dimmed, I was expecting a masterpiece, and while Interstellar may not have been that, it was certainly one of the best movies I’ve seen this year.

Casting:

Matthew McConaughey pulls off one of the best performances I have ever seen him give (Mud and Dallas Buyer’s Club included) and is entirely believable as the loving father, balancing the regret of abandoning his children with the pressure of his duty to his crewmates and to the human race.

Michael Caine produces another great performance as the secretly pessimistic astrophysicist on his deathbed. His tragic position, aging and unsure whether or not he will see his daughter before he dies, contrasts with the inherent evil in his character design. (I’m trying really hard not to spoil anything here.)

Anne Hathaway is not one of my favorite actresses. Personally, I feel that she does not bring enough personality to her roles, and is simply a blank slate that can fit any role without making it hers. However, I cannot overlook how demanding her role must have been, and honestly, this is the best I’ve ever seen her perform, even if it was outshone by the remarkable performances by her co-stars.

Visual Effects:

I would not make the statement that Interstellar is carried by its spectacular cinematography. However, I would say that my experience would not have been as satisfying had I not seen this movie in a theatre. While this may not be a “popcorn movie,” it pays to see it on a large, high-quality screen.

Direction:

I confidently call myself a Christopher Nolan fan. In fact, most people are, even if they don’t recognize his name. Simply listing his recent movies will draw reactions from even the most casual film fan. One of the reasons why this movie seems perfectly tailored to Nolan is his interesting angle on the use of CGI (computer-generated imagery). Even in a digital effects-heavy movie like Interstellar, if there is an opportunity to use a physical effect, he will, rather than use unnecessary CGI. Nolan also does a great job of making the audience understand the sheer vastness of this movie, physically and cinematically. With a 169-minute run time, this movie is obviously huge. With a 169-minute run time, this movie is obviously huge. Cinematically, his use of wide-angle shots of the nothingness that faces the main characters, along with lines like, “Millimeters of aluminum— that’s it.  And nothing within millions of miles that won’t kill us in seconds.” really give the audience a sense of just how far these astronauts are from home. There were also certain shots and musical cues that were clear homages to Nolan’s 2001: A Space Odyssey, without feeling like they were ripped-off or copied-and-pasted. Even with his impressive filmography, this is Nolan at his best. However, the one fault I will point out in his direction was his attempt at a stronger emotional punch. Without spoiling anything, in my opinion, if the movie had ended 10 minutes earlier, my experience would have been better.

Musical Score:

I don’t need to tell you that Hans Zimmer knocked it out of the park with this one! Everything fit perfectly. I have heard complaints about the music being too loud at times, drowning out important dialogue, but I did not experience that issue, and so, I will not count it as a flaw.

Overall Rating Score:

I would give Interstellar an 8/10. This movie is a must-see, and despite the nearly three-hour run time, I never felt bored, and was disappointed when it ended — not because the movie was disappointing, but because I was so enthralled with the story and its characters that I didn’t want it to end. I can only compare the feeling I got when the credits began to roll to the feeling one gets after finishing a great book series, a feeling of loss almost. Emotionally, I never felt the same from five minutes to the next. To experience this movie at its finest, I would recommend seeing it on an IMAX projector, or at least in a movie theatre, as I’ve stated. This is the only movie I have ever seen that left the entire theatre audience in complete silence for another 30 seconds after the credits started rolling. Wow!

 

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About the Writer
Nick S., Staff Writer & Student Editor

Nick S. is a 9th-grade student at Rectory. This is his fourth year at Rectory School, and his second year on the student newspaper. He is on the cross...

1 Comment

One Response to “Interstellar”

  1. adviser on May 21st, 2015 11:21 am

    Nick, I usually don’t like futuristic movies, but your article made this movie sound so good that I just might watch it sometime soon! As usual, your article was well written and very detailed. Great work! Mrs. Shattuck

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Interstellar