Go and see this film. It is one of the best films I have seen years. This is a spoiler free review. Also, the posters are incredibly cool.
Synopsis: In order to escape a dying earth, a group of explorers utilize a newly discovered wormhole. Their exploration will not only potentially save humanity but also surpass the limitations on human space travel and conquer the vast distances involved in an interstellar voyage. (Slightly adapted synopsis from IMDb)
Review: I am a huge fan of science fiction, in both literary and film mediums. In recent years, Hollywood has released an abundance of science fiction movies. Most of these movies are decent but few enter the realm of truly fantastic. Hence, I was rather nervous about Interstellar. Even though Christopher Nolan was directing, I am naturally hesitant about all science fiction films. Thankfully, I was worried over nothing. Interstellar is easily the best realistic science fiction released in the past several years.
Interstellar is Christopher Nolan’s ninth feature film and it should be nominated for Best Picture. The cinematography is jaw dropping and awe inspiring. You will feel like you are actually in space. Hoyte van Hoytema was the lead cinematographer and his filming is spectacular. The visuals were shot in the 15/70 IMAX format, this is likely one of the last feature films to be shot in this format. Nolan is not a fan of the current digital projection trend; he prefers an actual film roll. Parts of the film achieve something close to cinematic poetry. If for nothing else, go and see the film for the visuals. There are several thrilling scenes that will remain seared in your brain long after the film ends. Hans Zimmer created a stirring score that perfectly complements the visuals.
Perhaps the best part of Interstellar is its individuality. Nolan took extreme measures to avoid mimicking scenes from previous space themed films. However, there are some nods to classic space exploration films woven into the narrative. Though you have to pay attention or you will miss them. The main narrative is grounded in current societal concerns; this gives the film a feeling of urgency and a strong emotional pull. A majority of the science and technology is as accurate as possible, for the sake of time some of the science is fudged a little. But the underlying assumptions are correct.
Matthew McConaughey puts in an exceptional performance; it will be a travesty if he is not nominated for Best Actor. McConaughey’s character, Cooper, is a father forced to abandon his family and embark on a nearly impossible mission. Cooper struggles to come to terms with his mission and his abandonment of his family. The plot is packed with drama, humor, intense action, and some well-placed humor. He nails all the emotional highs and lows demanded by the role. This is one of his best performances. Anne Hathaway and Jessica Chastain shine in their limited roles. Chastain and Hathaway are both forces to be reckoned with.
A lot of reviewers will rattle their keyboards and take apart the science/nitpick the details. The film is not perfect; no film will ever achieve such hallowed goals. But the emotional and visual punch of the film is undeniable. I left the theater feeling like I had been forcefully removed from a magical dream. Nolan has created a magnificent film that is a cinematic masterpiece that is worth seeing on the big screen.