Christopher Nolan’s Interstellar should be viewed as one of the greatest sci-fi films of all time and here I discuss why.

I am a deep thinker when it comes to the universe and what this film manages to do is give the feeling of the limitless space and the impossible task of demonstrating how difficult space exploration will be when it is our time to space travel. I say our time because it is inevitable is it not? NASA are already putting in the technical processes and the technology in place to get humans onto Mars by 2030. Interstellar goes deeper than NASA’s plan – this is deep space exploration whereby going through a black hole looks and feels possible on the big screen. The film manages to make the audience feel like they are on the journey of traveling such incredible distances using impressive visuals and amazing cinematography.

Christopher Nolan shooting Interstellar in Iceland
Christopher Nolan shooting Interstellar in Iceland

Nolan is known for limiting the use of special effects and computer-generated imagery and in this film he tries to limit this as much as possible and sticks to his known methods of using anamorphic 35 mm and IMAX 70 mm photography. With space travel, you could be cynical to think that Nolan would find it very difficult to limit the use of CGI, however, he still manages to stick to his belief by staying away from CGI by using locations such as mountains in Iceland to depict a faraway planet. This is perhaps the reasoning for my opinion that Nolan is currently one of the best directors of our time. Interstellar is probably his benchmark masterpiece. Even when faced with the task of doing a sci-fi film Nolan manages to go beyond what is expected to make it feel as authentic as possible.

it comes as no surprise that Christopher Nolan turned to Hans Zimmer to produce one of his best pieces of work

As for the storyline itself, a lot of people mistake this film to be about spaceships, the universe and saving Earth. Actually, the core of this film is really about human connection, love, and relationships. Imagine being millions and millions of miles away from the one that you loved knowing full well that you are missing crucial moments in their lives due to time and relativity. What you feel to be an hour is actually years lost with someone you love and because of the way that space and time work it is completely out of your control. This film uses the law of physics to provide meaning to human connection and as an audience member you feel that pain and it is relatable if you have ever felt a distance between you and someone you have loved, where you know you are losing precious time, where you know that it is time that cannot be made back. The acting in this film is more than applaudable. From Matthew McConaughey and his acting transformation to the young Mackenzie Foy who plays the younger Murph, the acting matches the tone and mood of the film which is gritty, emotional and gripping.

It is such a shame that films like this do not get the appreciation that it deserves in the wider media as I believe this will be a film we will look back on in years to come.

All this would not have been possible if it was not for a good soundtrack so it comes as no surprise that Christopher Nolan turned to Hans Zimmer to produce one of his best pieces of work. The soundtrack gives its all. It is generally strong and ambitious but it goes straight to the core of the film. It is loud when it needs to be and it is tentative when the tension is building up and it is loud again when it gets to its conclusions. Hans Zimmer confirmed recently that when he produced this music he was given a one-page overview of what the film was about which made creating the soundtrack difficult – he thought about the people he loved when producing the music. The reason why Christopher Nolan provided only a one-page summary is because he wanted to make the storyline as secretive as possible. It is great credit that Hans Zimmer has managed to produce such an amazing soundtrack which aligns favourably with the film with so little narrative to use for inspiration.

If you are interested in space, if you like a story with meaning and you are patient enough to appreciate cinematography at its finest then I would not hesitate to watch this film. It is such a shame that films like this do not get the appreciation that it deserves in the wider media as I believe this will be a film we will look back on in years to come.

By Dan Hart

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2 thoughts on “Opinion Piece – Why I cannot get over Christopher Nolan’s Interstellar

  1. I really like Interstellar. Or, more specifically, I really like the first two thirds of it, but feel like it falls apart towards the end.

    I’m glad you mentioned the relativity sequence, because that’s easily the most effective passage of the film for me, and McConaughey’s acting when he realizes how much of Murphy’s life he has missed is legitimately, heart-rendingly effective.

    But the final act aggravates me. I feel like the movie reaches the very limit of understood science, and then reaches beyond it, with Nolan inserting his own wacky self-fulfillment theories on love being this all-encompassing force that can somehow influence physical reality across the entire time/space continuum. And that, in this context at least, just seems like some hippie bullshit to me.

    It’s not that I’m radically opposed to the idea in itself, I’d just like to see it in a different movie. The reason I think such a large chunk of Interstellar works so well (that relativity sequence in particular) is because its built on a solid scientific base, and the ending (plus everything leading directly to it) undermines that for me.

    Still, I enjoyed reading your thoughts and I think you make some solid points. It would be boring if we all agreed on everything.


    1. I agree with your thoughts on the film to an extent. The relativity sequences are outstanding however I sometimes feel that the science aspects of the film are looked at critically a bit too much.

      Nolan clearly places love at the core of the film and shows how we underestimate human connection. Okay yes scientifically you cannot rely on feelings alone to better humanity and to achieve scientific goals because physics is physics and you cannot override the law. But if you had two people to trust with a mission and one of them you loved, which one would you rely on? The one that loves you back and is driven by feelings on the mission or the one that only looks at the objectives scientifically.

      Cooper fails in his decision making because he only trusted science alone when picking planets. Where as Brand looked at the situation based on science and feeling and it turned out to be the best planet to start life again. It then turns out Coopers biggest success of the film is when his love for his daughter Murph motivates him to figure out the codes to get the message across to her. I feel in the era we live in now human connection is becoming less important each day with the constant rise of a variety of different apps and social media which neans we connect with so many people on a daily basis that we are almost becoming numb and trusting people less. I think the film shows how important trusting and having that connection again is crucial.

      However, this is my interpretation and this film can be viewed in in a variety of different ways. I appreciate the view you got from it.


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