Writer-director Christopher Nolan, who directed the Dark Knight trilogy, checks in with a new big budget outer space adventure "Interstellar." Neil Rosen filed the following review.
Set sometime in the not too distant future, the Earth has run out of resources and humans are about to become extinct. It is up to a group of astronauts, led by Matthew McConaughey, to find a new, inhabitable planet.
There are some interesting, ambitious ideas at work here, but most of them are never fully realized as the movie tries to be too many things at once.
It is a melodramatic family saga, with McConaughey feeling pangs of guilt for leaving his daughter behind in order to save the world. It is a semi-intellectual sci-fi flick, with a not so subtle eco message, and it is a space age action film. Nolan simply spreads himself too thin.
Warm and fuzzy is not Christopher Nolan's forte. As a result, his daughter abandonment storyline is very hokey. Plus, there's an overblown, heavy-handed Hans Zimmer score.
The action sequences fare much better. But the entire movie, at close to three hours, like the outer space voyage these astronauts are on, goes on for what seems to be light years.
McConaughey is cast well as the all-American hero. However, Anne Hathaway gives a wooden performance and Jessica Chastain's talents are wasted.
There are too many long speeches about the space-time continuum. There’s also a ridiculous robot that looks like a refrigerator and a simplistic overriding message - drummed into your head too often - that love will conquer all.
Right from the start, it was too obvious where it would all end up. I have to say that the movie looks stunning, but Nolan borrows heavily from "2001: A Space Odyssey," both conceptually and visually. Overall, it is never quite as smart as it thinks it is.
Neil Rosen's Big Apple Rating: Two apples