Directed by: Christopher Nolan
Starring: Mathew McConaughey, Anne Hathaway, Jessica Chastain
This review will not contain any spoilers.
“Couldn’t you have told her you were going to save the world?”
Among my film groups on Facebook that I’m apart of, we have a saying, “In Nolan We Trust.” This means that even though there have been several times where a plot idea sounds dumb or something cant possibly live up to the hype, Nolan has always delivered, even if its been just slightly messy. I, unlike some, even liked The Dark Knight Rises, considered his weakest film. After seeing Interstellar, I’m going to have to change the phrase to, “In Nolan We Trusted.”
“We will find a way. We always have.”
When a wormhole is discovered, explorers and scientists unite to embark on a voyage through it, transcending the normal limits of human space travel. Among the travelers is an engineer, Cooper (played by McConaughey), who must decide whether or not to leave his two children behind to join the voyage and attempt to save humanity from an environmentally devastated Earth by finding a new habitable planet in another galaxy.
Personally when it comes to space travel films, I generally like them, with the exception of 2001: A Space Odyssey. While Stanley Kubrick maybe my favorite (dead) director, that is the only film in his résumé that consistently puts me to sleep. I reference 2001, because Interstellar at times directly references it, some in nice subtle ways, and others in blatant ways. Interstellar is a film that I really wanted to love. I went to the first screening of a 70mm IMAX print, I made sure I wasn’t going to have to use the restroom, and turned off my phone entirely. (In most cases I just turn it on silent) So with the best possible viewing experience, the film itself, at first, really had me sucked into its plot.
The first half of this film mostly takes place on earth and focuses mainly on Coopers character, his loved ones, and the earth’s condition and mankind’s struggles. The film never directly focuses on telling the audience what is wrong, but is able to convey in a very natural way the problems of food shortage. Unfortunately the second half of the film, is a damn mess that is so incoherent and non-sense, it makes the ending of Inception seem like it had closure.
But before I start a possible rant, the positives. For starters the IMAX presentation is spectacular in almost every way. Nolan has been able to push the format into new areas in the past and this really shines by having over one hour of the film be in the full 15/70, presentation. The regular 35mm segments still look good, but I did notice a few scenes looked slightly out of focus. The sound mix was truly one of the most thunderous I’ve ever heard with some of the most aggressive LFE usage that really will test the IMAX sound system to its fullest extent. The musical score by Hans Zimmer really is just a grand score that really does give the film some scope, and I can’t wait to have on my ipod. Visually, the film is breathtaking and is photographed to perfection. Acting is also good here too, with performances by McConaughey and Hathaway standing out in several scenes.
Unfortunately the problems start to show around the second half of the three hour film, when it becomes a “pit stop” movie of, “we have to visit this planet, ok now this planet, ect.“. The film’s pacing is jarring at certain moments from it transitioning on what is happening in space, back to earth, now back to interview footage with old people, now back to space. It’s a mess, but the worst truly is the final thirty minutes with the film taking a twist that is so far fetched that it disappears up its own ass in a similar way that “Bioshock Infinite” did with its ending, only this time, its worse. When the final reel of the film started, I literally face palmed and wanted to leave. It was that painfully ridiculous and one giant leap of faith that I couldn’t take.
Interstellar is a giant mess that while it has an excellent first act, gets bogged down in its own plot and then finds itself in a corner and has to miracle itself out of. I still would recommend it for the IMAX presentation and maybe there are people that will like the final act, but for me, I hated the ending to what was otherwise a really decent sci-fi adventure film that disappeared up its own ass.
No trailers contain any spoiler-ific material or show any third act material.