Newton’s Three Laws of Motion:
1. An object at rest or in motion will maintain its state until acted upon by another object.
2. Mass times Acceleration equals Force.
3. (Colloquial) For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction.
Or, to coin the film, to move forward you have to leave something behind.
Newton solved some fundamental problems. He even developed Calculus to do it. Einstein built on Newton and solved some other head-scratchers. His formulae suggested some odd things about how the universe works; things even he didn’t accept. Steven Hawking proved some of those mathematical aberrations to be true. Most of this lofty science, with the exception of Newton perhaps, defines effects few people care to view in their daily lives, though we all do live within them.
Space is a mighty big place. The Earth, no matter how big it looks to you, is really quite small in the scheme of things. We all have fun watching movies about spaceships with warp drive. I delight in watching the News about little Philae touching down on comet 67P. That took a lot of Newton, a lot of Von Braun, some Einstein, and many others to pull off. It’s fun to watch those movies and hints of them in the News. Space is a mighty big place, and some day we will have to move out there, as a race. It isn’t a question of if, it is only a question of when, which may be dictated in part by why.
Interstellar deals with all these things; the if, when, and why, and throws in some movie magic how to. The Earth is dying, and we’ve got to go or its curtains. But it isn’t an easy task. Do you try to save everyone, or some, or just the human species itself? And in all that jumble of Newton and Einstein and other longhairs, there are some quirky little paradoxes that only movies can play with.
I’ve seen reviews calling Interstellar an epic. In the sense that it is a long film, and a difficult one to make, then it is. I will say that it has other epic qualities. The story runs the full range of drama and pathos, along with action and light comic relief. The actors do very good work, as does Christopher Nolan, the director. The effects and editing are well done.
I really enjoy Hans Zimmer scores, and he hits the mark with this film, with one possible exception. But I don’t know if it was his fault or the sound editor’s fault. Nonetheless, it does not detract from the overall experience. There are bumps on every road.
It is PG-13, so there is nothing that can really offend anyone. There isn’t a 3D version, which is fine by me. Given its length (2 hours and 49 minutes), and its complexity, I can see why. There is a lot more film work and mechanical effects in this film than in most movies these days. CG was used, no doubt, and well. But there was much less of it than you would expect, and I enjoyed that.
The question in a review becomes, will you like it? That’s hard to say. I liked it. But I’m a nerd. I love science, and this movie is packed with it, much of it real, some of it a bit stretched but not too far off the mark. At times it made me think of 2001: A Space Odyssey, another film epic, and a landmark film. A landmark film that a lot of people don’t like. Go figure.
It boils down to your specific tastes. If you like science, physics, space, space travel, brain teasers, that sort of thing, you’ll probably enjoy it like I did. If thinking about fifth dimensional tesseracts, gravity, and time give you a headache, it may not be a movie for you.
That said, it is worth the ticket.