One of the things I was most excited for this year was Interstellar, the new movie from Christopher Nolan that’s been taking theaters – particularly IMAX ones – by storm. It’s not in theaters much longer if it still is, I imagine, so I’m writing about it a bit late to talk you into going to see it. Probably if you were going to see it in theaters, you have.
We only had so much time after this came out and before we went to Australia, so we decided to see Interstellar when we were there, after checking to make sure it was opening there. There and all over! And, clocking in close to three hours, we decided to do it in style. So while going to the largest IMAX in the southern hemisphere might have been cool, we instead tried out what in Australia has come to be called Gold Class: dinner and a movie. In style!
So I’ll talk a bit about our experience in Gold Class, and then about some of the things I loved in Interstellar. Because if I was just writing a post about how awesome Interstellar was, it would be really short. Like, I could do it here. Interstellar was awesome. It lived up to and exceeded all my expectations. It’s a masterful piece of Science Fiction. If I had to give it a place in film history, it would be as the film that was better than and replaced 2001: A Space Odyssey in our collective understanding. Done!
We’ve been to some of the newer theaters that have food served to you for the movie. Where we’ve been, there was a balcony with the nice seats, with the food, up above a normal theater. So lots of people in the screening, just some also paying a bit more and having a bit nicer seat and some pre-movie-delivered food. Maybe an alcoholic drink. Good times.
Gold Class was a few steps beyond that. After buying our more expensive ticket (though not a crazy amount more, $18 was standard, and $30 for Gold Class), we got to head into the lounge. There, we got to look over a menu to order food and drinks, for before the movie, at the start, the middle, and towards the end.
We finally got to head into the theater itself, to find that we weren’t just up on a couch in the balcony. This was a private sort of screening, maybe 18 seats in the whole theater. Individual recliners, super comfy. All set up as duos, with a little table in between for the food delivery. That happened as I mentioned throughout the film, and they did a nice job of being unobtrusive with it.
No, the thing we were worried about distracting us was the lady with the oxygen tank. It was probably nice for her, really, to have plenty of space around for that. And it’s less disruptive, as there were fewer of us to disrupt. It also turned out that this was a great movie for it, as eventually it blended in with the atmosphere and effects of the film.
I loved the science in this movie. Before we saw the film, we watched the Sourcefed Nerd review of it, where they talk a lot about the science, and how Christopher Nolan consulted with top scientists to come up with effects based not on what looks cool, but on what is our best guess at how things would look. In, ya know, space.
Anyway, rather than rehash what they said, let me just link the video. Knowing how much of the effects were based in science made me very happy, made the movie better.
Two of the best characters in Interstellar were the two robots, TARS and CASE. I love the conversations about their different settings, about humor and truthfulness. I love how they fold into the consoles, and are just there running the show on the shuttles.
And they would be a great idea on a long-range mission like this, using different resources from the humans so you don’t have as many using up the food, oxygen, etc. Actually, I liked the consideration of the resources, too, and the idea of including time as a resource, and weighing it against everything else.
But I was talking about the robots.
My favorite scene would have to be on Miller’s Planet, as the wave comes hurtling towards them. I looked for a wave like that every time we were near a beach after that in Australia… The way that CASE moved, the way he broke into the multiple points, and rolled like a ball. But at such high speed!
And then he pops out little arms, picks up Brand, and is able to bring her back, epic rolly-ball style, back to the shuttle!
The robot design was amazing, and the differences they have from humans, along with their similarities, were well thought-out. I expect we’ll see more robots like this in future movies, and who knows – maybe in real life.
Time Travel, or, Did We Create Ourselves?
Someone recently found my post about Intelligent Design and the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy from a while back, and their point was that imagining alien creators like in the Guide is not a simple or elegant answer. Fair enough.
In which case, is the simpler answer Interstellar? The thought that future humans find ways to go back in time, and influence the past. To guide humanity. To get us through the bad times, the hard times. You don’t have to imagine anyone but us, surviving on to the future, caring, of course, about how we get there.
It’s all theory and possibility and fiction, of course, but it does make you think. Indeed, this is something the movie did throughout. It made us think. Which is what I wanted from it – to get us thinking about space, about getting out of here. The food plague on Earth might be fictional – and similar to The Windup Girl – but if it’s not that, it could easily be something else.
And hopefully we’ll have a secret NASA with cool robots to lead us into space too!