Inadequate Review: Interstellar

This highly anticipated film from Christopher Nolan succeeded once again, but with some flaws.

If you are reading this review, first of all, I don’t know what you are doing with your life; secondly, you must not try to avoid spoiler. Because I will tell you that the story has a happy ending, surprisingly.

Astrophysics, relativity, time and space. If you are one of the people would consider any technical or theoretical flaw unacceptable, then this movie is not for you. After watching the movie, my wife and I had a very extensive conversation about the whole space traveling sequence, and found quite a few things impossible with this film. However, none of this hindered our viewing experience. As an audience, I found myself completely emotionally engaged during most of the film, closely following the characters throughout the entire amazing interstellar journey, fighting through improbable odds to get back the space station and save human race. After pilot Cooper decided to make the ultimate sacrifice for Dr. Brand and human race, he fell into the black hole where not even light could escape. Director Nolan used quite some of his imagination and magic tough to build us a 4 dimensions space. This scene was so amazing, and almost literally mind-blowing. As a person closely related to science, I have always had trouble in imagining what a 4 D space-time looks like (not that I am good at imagining any things), let alone to explain it to anyone else. But director found a way to present and communicate this complicated theoretical idea to a very large general audience with such ease. Although conventional wisdom tends to believe nothing survives in that gravity pull from black hole, I am certainly willing to admire that this film take advantage of some unknown theoretical area and great deal of imagination to explain the whole story from the beginning.

Besides the scene of Cooper black hole experience, I found the Dr. Mann planet plot was extremely intense. Before meeting Dr. Mann, everyone talked about Mann with such a glowing manner and absolute positive tone. It just smelt fishy. When Dr. Mann was woke up from deep sleep in water, he simply lost himself and cried uncontrollably. It is hard to imagine how people should react in that kind of situation, cry would be the most logic option. And Matt Damon did a great job in this role. Yes, it was Matt Damon who played Dr. Mann. I found he was a little too famous, and almost distractive in the movie. Anyhow, I digressed. And when asked about the broken robot, Dr. Mann behaved a little awkwardly. I thought to myself, oh, well, it is all downhill from here then. Apparently, Dr. Mann was so desperately looking for human contact, and he sent out fake positive signal, and tricked the crew to the frozen planet where even cloud was even frozen. He set up Cooper, broke his mask, almost killed him, then hijacked the aircraft with the intention to steal the space station? I think. The big revealing as Dr. Mann was getting closer and closer to jeopardize this entire mission was intense and nerve-racking. However, I have to say how Dr. Mann didn’t see the danger of opening the airtight gate was beyond me. But then again, hey, he was basically insane. As the blast happened, the camera took the position straight far above everything that was happening, and the entire theatre was silent all the sudden. In that moment, the silence was so powerful. Looking at all the debris from the space station floating away and the station spinning away from the far above, I felt like I was staring at the end of human race. It was so helpless! I hold my breath while watching pilot cooper miraculously pulled off the high difficulty docking onto a fast spin station. I can’t believe that he did it. Later, my wife told me that she knew everything was going to be fine, as all of this kind movies are, and she wasn’t nervous at all. I grinned. Maybe I was way more emotionally involved in this kind of stuff than others. One thing I have to say that if the station was spinning at a very high rate, it would be impossible for human to actually achieve that task. Just imagine what will happen if putting an animal in high speed centrifuge.

The most moving scene was when Cooper came back from the water planet, and watched all the video messages from the earth. Looking at our son literally growing up in front of you must be a tough and emotional experience. I felt my eyes were a little watering during this. I have always fell for this kind of stories, love of family, heroism, desperation, or being forgotten, and probably more. And this one combined two of them perfectly.

And this leads me to the miserable ending, which I don’t think it made too much sense in the movie. During this entire dangerous journey, Cooper’s love for his daughter was the main motive for him to go on. And the director spent the first one forth of the movie to set the stage for world ending, and Cooper/daughter relationship. Throughout the storyline, it sometimes was the daughter who brought forward some story development. Needless to say, when Cooper woke up in the hospital on human heaven station, he had all of these emotion to express, all of the stories need to be told. But when he saw his daughter, maybe it was her aged appearance that made her unrelateable to him, Cooper barely had five sentences with his daughter before he stood up and left. My jaw is currently still left on the theatre flood. Well, not literally. But I, as a audience, who filled with all these emotions, ready to experience with Cooper for this happy ending, was left unsatisfied. This is it? This is all you have to say to your daughter after surviving from HUGE wave, murder, explosion, and BLACK HOLE. By the way, Cooper has a son too. If Cooper didn’t even acknowledge his death or existence in the final big family reunion, why introduce such a role? This role almost contributed nothing to the story. It was very redundant, and unnecessary. The final happy ending was so full of flaws that it took me out of the movie and left me with such a bitter taste. Why Cooper as a hero returned to the human station, but was merely acknowledged by a reporter? He went through a worm hole, and black hole, and some kind of 4 D dimension space, and came back, and was hardly a celebrity? I found that so difficult to accept. Maybe human race finally evolved after the nature disaster, and just simply mind their own business.

As a person who always afraid of looking into the infinite space, I found this movie just justified my fear. Human was so trivial, and so helpless in the space, what we can do to save ourselves was almost by some miracle. But this is neither here nor there. Despite of my resentment of the ending, I still like this movie quite a bit. It was a great viewing experience if only for the visual effect, and I would recommend anyone to see them. And in fact, I have already done that.

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