“We’ve Always Defined Ourselves ByThe Ability To Overcome The Impossible.”A line which rings for the entire film. ‘Interstellar’ is a 2014 science-fiction film directed by Christopher Nolan. Set in a dystopian future where humanity is struggling to survive, the film follows a group of astronauts who travel through a wormhole near Saturn in search of a new home for humanity. With a premise like this, you would expect some sort of over-the-top story or set-pieces. The film, however, is for the most part, grounded in realism. We spend the first-third of the film on Earth, as we witness the slow decay of Earth’s resources and the lead-up to the space mission, which is followed by the middle portion of the film which follows our astronauts as they wander the stars looking for habitable planets. The third and final portion of the film wraps up the storyline by answering the several mysteries the film set up in its first portion, ending on a mildly satisfying note.
The biggest strength of this film are the visuals. With almost two-thirds of the film set in space, it heavily relies on the effects, both visual and practical, and the film manages to nail that important aspect. Be it a planet filled completely in water or the crashing of a shuttle into a space station or even the visually-exhilarating climax, the effects are what will draw you in and will keep you engaged till the very end. There is a reason the film won the Academy Award for Best Visual Effects. Complimenting this is the thrilling score composed by masterfully by Hans Zimmer, which keeps your attention fixed to the screen. The sound mixing is another strength of the film, and adds a certain sense of intrigue to the film, whether it is the steady ticking of a clock in the background or the launching of a space shuttle.
At the forefront of this film is Matthew McConaughey who plays Joseph Cooper, a father and former NASA pilot, who is chosen to lead the excursion into space. McConaughey expertly portrays the emotions of a father who has to leave behind his children for a mission that he is unlikely to return from. Scenes he shares with his daughter Murphy are particular highlights, especially a scene in the middle of the film, of him watching a transmission from her in space. While actors like Anne Hathway, Jessica Chastain and Michael Caine also turn in stellar performances, it is McConaughey who steals the show with every scene he is in.
Where the film struggles is in the final act where it tries to provide answers for the mysteries that had been set up in the previous two sections. The film tries its best to provide a satisfying answer to the questions, but it manages to come off as somewhat over-the-top and unrealistic, which is in stark contrast to the rest of the film, ending the film on an underwhelming note. Overall, however, the film is a grandeur exploration of space with certain themes of family and home that will certainly pull at your heartstrings. I would certainly recommend this film with a rating of 8.5 on 10.