Whether it be the Dark Knight trilogy, The Prestige or Inception, writer and producer Christopher Nolan does not disappoint. Nolan, known for his mind-bending story lines and unexpected twists, followed suit with his newest film, Interstellar, which made its debut a month ago on Nov. 5.
Moviegoers abroad packed into theaters on opening weekend, spending just under $50 million on tickets in the United States. Impressive as it is, compared to Nolan’s other opening weekend totals for films such as The Dark Knight ($158 million) and Inception ($62 million), its earnings were relatively low.
This could be due to its 2 hour 49 minute run time or competition with Big Hero 6, which debuted the same weekend and earned $52 million. Nonetheless, viewers who did see Interstellar were in for a modern classic.
The science fiction flick follows Joseph Cooper (played by Matthew McConaughey), a NASA pilot turned farmer in the wake of 1930’s Dust Bowl-like conditions that wiped out most of the world’s food supply. Unlike the droughts and dust storms in the U.S.’s Midwest that eventually ended after a decade, the future looks bleak for humans on Earth.
So, as the saying goes, “When the going gets tough, the tough get going,” Cooper finds himself traveling from planet to planet trying to find an inhabitable place for humans to colonize.
He is accompanied on his journey by several others including Amelia Brand (Anne Hathaway), the daughter of the scientist (Michael Caine) behind the whole mission.
McConaughey, the 2014 Academy Awards Best Actor for his role in Dallas Buyer’s Club, seems a likely candidate for the award once again next year. Whether a winner or not, the 45-year-old Texan delivered a more than “alright, alright, alright” performance.
Some of his greatest moments come through his interactions with his daughter, Murphy (Jessica Chastain). The rebellious young girl has a knack for discovery, and a rather mysterious, ghostlike finding of hers ultimately leads her father to leave on his mission.
Like any father-daughter relationship, though, when Cooper has to leave Murphy behind, the process does not go swiftly. For audiences, including boyfriends watching the movie on a date, holding tears back may prove difficult.
Besides the acting, perhaps one of the most impressive aspects of the movie and a guaranteed Academy Award nomination is the special effects. The special effects crews produced beautiful images of the solar system, extremely realistic lighting schemes and pinpoint planetary representations.
Interstellar seems built for IMAX. As Cooper’s convoy flies through space, movie theater seats and popcorn are the only reminder that the audience is not on the Endurance as well. The technical crew made every sound, flash and light with perfection, and it would be difficult for any upcoming movies to compete or even come close.
From science fiction fans to cinemophiles, Insterstellar appeals to all. Every aspect is perfectly orchestrated, somehow making a movie with advanced scientific theories beyond what we can grasp right now (e.g. relativity, black holes, interstellar travel) somehow feasible.
Interstellar, though nearly three hours, takes audiences on a thrill ride filled with drops, turns and spins. Nolan gives no warning of when the turns will happen, but the common reactions from those leaving the theater tend to be a unanimous “whoa.”