Saturday, November 8, 2014

Nolan Drama, 'Interstellar,' Is Out Of This World

By Darlene Donloe

Audiences seem to be mesmerized by space. It may be because it really is the last frontier.

Whatever it is, it’s good for the box office.

Whether it’s Star Trek, Star Wars, Contact, Apollo 13 or last year’s phenomenal Gravity, the notion of space and what’s beyond our own atmosphere has always blown people’s minds.

Now comes Christopher Nolan’s epic space adventure, Interstellar, to throw even more mystery into the mix.

Currently in theaters nationwide, this action/mystery is about a dying Earth. Enter a team of explorers who undertake the most important mission in human history; traveling beyond this galaxy to discover whether mankind has a future somewhere else in the universe.

What an ambitious undertaking for Nolan.  The behemoth foundation is sometimes beyond comprehension. It’s an odyssey through the space-time continuum that left me confused, but still intrigued. 

At times the scientific jargon left me shaking my head and wishing on a star that I knew what was going on.

As bewildered as it left me, I couldn’t stop watching this film. It was beyond interesting. It draws you in and gives you a feeling that anything is possible.

At the core of the movie is a love story between Matthew McConaughey’s character, Cooper, a former test pilot and his children, 15-year-old son Tom (Timothée Chalamet) particularly his daughter, 10-year-old Murphy (played with authenticity by Mackenzie Foy).  A lot of the movie takes place on the family farm where Cooper or Coop lives with his children and his father-in-law played by John Lithgow.

Murphy is a hoot. At 10, she’s already a science wiz. Her devotion to science and love for her father are at the heart of the film.

After Coop and Murphy stumble upon an old NASA base, things begin to go at warp speed.  The base is headed by Coop’s old boss, Professor Brand, played by Michael Caine.

When Professor Brand asks Coop to pilot a voyage into space to find a place for earthlings to inhabit, Murphy objects. Her feeling aside, Coop takes the assignment even though he knows there is a good chance he may never return to Earth.

Matthew McConaughey, who is on a roll, gives a strong performance which is copied by a stellar cast that includes Michael Caine, Jessica Chastain, who plays a grown up Murphy and Anne Hathaway, who plays Amelia, Professor Brand’s daughter.

Interstellar (Paramount Pictures), directed by Christopher Nolan and written by Jonathan Nolan and Christopher Nolan, stars Matthew McConaughey, Anne Hathaway, Michael Caine, Jessica Chastain, David Gyasi, Casey Affleck, Topher Grace, Wes Bentley, Ellen Burstyn, John Lithgow, Mackenzie Foy, Bill Irwin and David Oyelowo.

On the DONLOE SCALE: D (don’t bother), O (oh, no), N (needs work), L (likeable), O (oh, yeah) and E (excellent), Interstellar gets an E (excellent).

Interstellar is Rated PG-13; Running time: 2 hr. 49 min.

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