In the near future, Earth is no longer able to support human life and the next generation will either starve due to lack of food or suffocate due to poisonous gasses from the atmosphere. Earth’s only hope is to look to the stars for a new planet to call home. Father of two and former pilot Coop (Matthew McConaughey) is given the chance to save the human race by his former professor (Michael Caine). By going through a wormhole placed there by “them”, along with the professor’s daughter (Anne Hathaway), they can find new worlds. The catch is that years will have gone by when/if he returns.
Interstellar comes across as a typical Christopher Nolan film. He takes an epic adventure of the biggest scale imaginable but still manages to tell a real human story in the midst of it about desperation, discovery, abandonment and love.
The visuals are also top quality as they are in all Nolan’s films, with the travel through the wormhole particularly impressive.
The acting is superb as the McConaissance is still going strong as he dominates every scene in which he appears. He is brilliant in the role of the father having to miss his children grow up in order to make sure they have a place to grow old. Hathaway is good as the loved-up scientist, while Caine and Jessica Chastain put in respectable turns but don’t have as much screen time as the other two.
Where this film lives or dies, however, is not the plot, but how the plot unfolds. The story itself is interesting, original enough and genuinely relevant considering our current situation of global warming. It’s just that it’s one of those films that really stretches the line between science fiction and fantasy.
They are different. Fantasy is about things that can never occur but are fun to think about. Science fiction is usually based on theories about how to do things but just can’t be done yet. They might never be done but at least there are ways to try and attempt it.
People are familiar with black holes and wormholes so they will accept their presence even if they don’t understand them, but when they start talking about manipulating gravity for transport or time being a physical dimension that can be entered, the believability might be stretched a little bit too far. The ending will also be a moment of contention for many.
All in all, it is a visually pleasing, well acted, interesting space adventure that will have you debating it afterward, one way or the other.