Thursday, November 20, 2014


How you will feel about this Christopher Nolan film will depend a great deal on what you value in a movie and where your tolerance thresholds sit.

If you want good science in your science-fiction films, Interstellar will just annoy you, maybe even piss you off.  Kyle can argue persuasively that it's the dumbest movie he's seen in 2014, a year full of dumb movies.  The film indeed ignores all realities about how scientists work, how people would really respond to some of its key events, all serious thinking about time travel, and many, many other science-related aspects of its story.

If you most enjoy subtle portraits of slowly growing characters, Interstellar will disappoint you.  Nothing about this film is subtle.  For nearly three hours, grand gestures and soaring soundtracks are the order of the day.

If, though, you enjoy those grand gestures and are willing to let realities slide away in the face of a story set on a grand scale, if you're willing to listen to the occasional speech about the power of the human heart in return for watching humans with great heart try to rise above their circumstances, then you will love Interstellar.  I did.  I couldn't help but notice the many egregious errors, and I winced a few times at the dumb speeches, but for almost all of its 169 minutes I sat transfixed, seeing some of the best renditions yet of space, feeling that sense of wonder that led me to SF as a child.

If you're the same type of moviegoer I am, do not miss this film.  If you're in either of the first two camps, either skip it or expect to be annoyed.

As for me, I'll watch it again when it comes out on Blu-Ray.


Sonya Lawson said...

I loved this movie because of the grandeur of the themes of love, loss, redemption. It wasn't trying to be a documentary- I keep telling my friends who wanted it to be more realistic. I also very much enjoyed Big Hero 6. As a 46 year old sci-fi geek and music history professor sometimes I just want to see movies that push me to feel awe, or make me laugh, or tell a good story, or just see things blow up. I always enjoy reading your movie reviews and use them as ways to get my friends to decide on what we are going to go see. Thanks!

David Drake said...

Dear Mark,
The special effects producer on Interstellar was Kevin Elam, Karl Wagner's nephew (his sispter's son). Likewise on Judge Dredd. I've heard various things about both movies, but the special effects have been universally praised.
I think of how desperately Karl wanted to get into Hollywood (which he viewed as lots of money for doing nothing) and it makes me sad. (I'm pretty sure Kevin works extremely hard for his income.)

Mark said...

Cool info, Dave. Thanks.

Mark said...

Sonya, as I said, I also loved it and had no problem forgiving its flaws.

Thanks for the kind words about the reviews. I'm glad they are helpful!


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