Want the short, spoiler free review of this film?
Go see it right now. Quit reading this, go see it. Don’t read any reviews or summaries. Go with a blank slate. Enjoy the ride. Be amazed.
Now for the rest of the story…
Interstellar is classic Christopher Nolan. What is that exactly? Take a story on the verge of the incredible, add a dash of realism and humor, then drive the audience to the cliff of that moment. That moment when all the air is suck out of the room, that collective gasp. That moment when the rest of the film turns upside down – literally in Inception. That moment when the loose end is tied up but 40 more explode open. That moment when you realize you must watch this movie again. Momento, Insomnia, The Prestige, and Inception all fit this pattern. Interstellar is right at home in Nolan universe.
Interstellar starts out with a simple enough premise – the earth is dying and it is becoming abundantly clear that humanity’s time on the planet is coming to a close. Enter Matthew McConaughey’s character Cooper and his daughter Murph who discover a secret NASA base with two plans to save the earth.
From this point forward – the movie just explodes. Interstellar is the sci-fi movie all sci-fi fans have been waiting for. The moral questions abound. Are humans intrinsically good or not? Is there evil in space? Or just the evil we bring with us? Is there other life out there? How can a 45-minute mistake on a planet translate into 23 years back home? What about black holes and worm-holes and is gravity the 5th dimension that is constant throughout the universe?
The science of the science-fiction equation is at times overwhelming and I can see where it could be hard to follow. The subjects of theory of relativity, space-time continuum, and theoretical quantum physics abound throughout the film. Yet Nolan knows perfectly when to use an actors or a droid (which are perfect for this film) to explain the more difficult concepts. The concepts add to the depth of the film, not distract from it.
Interstellar is not just about the science-fiction though. It’s about love and the importance of deep, meaningful relationships that give life depth and purpose. The interplay between science and humanity is tense and real. The concepts that tug at one another – gravity and love, time and space – are played to a point in the film that make the scientist, the philosopher, and the theologian all smile. A rare feat for a film.
All of this – the story, the concepts, the cinematography – plus incredible acting make this film a wonder to experience. With 5 different Academy Award winners in the cast, this may be the most talented cast ever assembled for a film. Furthermore, where these actors pop up in the story is sheer awesomeness.
There is not much else I can talk about without spoiling the film. So just go see it, already! It will be worth it. It’s by far the best film of 2014, perhaps one of the best sci-fi films we’ve ever seen.