Watched this Interstellar movie that we are supposed to care about. It is 2001: A Space Odyssey as told by an idiot.
One cool thing about it, though: The sound mixing is designed in a way where you can't make out what anybody is saying for large chunks of time. The director has stated that this is intentional, as he desired the focus to be more on the visual elements. This would have been a cool idea if the performances were visually interesting(they aren't), or if anything about the special effects or Nolan's filmmaking were interesting or expressive or the slightest bit informative of anything beyond Nolan's admiration of better films than ones he's capable of making. So what's left is a movie with an ambitious(and, allegedly, academically accurate) scientific basis that is deliberately obscured in favor of the director's fondness for the uninteresting performances of his actors, his dull action sequences, and shots he stole from Stanley Kubrick.
Normally, this is an unforgivable aesthetic element, as it has absolutely no stylistic function within the movie beyond adding a purely sensory level of ambiguity to the experience, in the form of not being able to tell what anybody is saying half the time. The perk of this is that you are not going to hear what people are saying half the time. This is a major plus to the experience, as the writing in this film is an embarrassing collection of plot holes, nauseating cliches, and unconvincingly idiotic and impulsive characters.
They have claimed that the science in this film is accurate, but by the time you reach that point in the film, you are already fully prepared to see mankind get wiped out and the universe be relieved of one of its great sources of arrogance and stupidity. I do not care that the screenwriter spent some time at a university somewhere studying with some bald fuck who has his own wikipedia article. At my university's library they had a collection of screenplays. Good ones, in fact, all collected in a dusty old book that nobody had picked up for a decade. And I went to some out-in-the-middle-of-nowhere university that nobody gives a fuck about. I'm sure they had screenplays at whatever the fuck important university that guy went to. It is my opinion as an educated person that the film's screenwriter was studying the wrong thing at that university.
So this is a movie I highly recommend if you want to see a really stupid, unpleasantly emotional version of 2001, or have found that you have an unrealistic level of respect for Christopher Nolan and want to see proof that he isn't very good at what he does.
I also saw Interstellar last week.
The main thing I enjoyed in the film was the music and sound design. Since 12 Years A Slave I decided Hans Zimmer was a hack who just pastes the same themes and motifs into completely different movies, but obviously he's done a lot more than that in his career and I'm just being a motherfucker. In this film I liked his music, it's good Hollywood adventure stuff. So I was totally into getting taken away by the music during the sequences of intensity and wonder.
There are some things people say about Christopher Nolan that I don't agree with. One is that he's a 'cerebral' filmmaker, which is probably meant in repsonse to the criticism that his movies are more about plot than character. I don't think he is cerebral - his movies are all pretty nonsensical high concept stuff, and I would be up for that if I thought he handled his concepts well, but he treats them with such a lack of imagination. Conceptually and visually. Inception was about fucking dreams, the possibilities are endless! What could be explored when it comes to real people probing into the subconscious of others? Well, in this dream level there is a James Bond action scene. In this level there is a boring skyscraper lobby. The only thing Inception does visually which is interesting is the dimension warping effect, which he reuses in Interstellar. In Interstellar humanity is going to the far reaches of the universe, the possibilities are similarly limitless. So on this planet there is a big wave. On this other planet there is a lot of ice. And then there's one which just looks like a Californian desert. That's what deep space planets are like. Visually the guy has nothing going on. He doesn't direct in an interesting way, I can barely pick out a single shot which I'd say was well composed. He directs in a very flat and perfunctory way.
The stuff about how his films don't focus on character. Well, more than any other, Interstellar does, and it really shows that The Nolan Bros don't really know how to write interesting characters or even good dialogue beyond a couple of trailer phrases like 'humanity was born on this planet, it was never meant to die here' (which you know, is good trailer jank but it's still not great writing). In Interstellar you've got a bunch of characters with the most rote inner conflicts a writer could muster. 'Coop' the swashbuckling American space pilot misses his daughter. Brand the aloof but brilliant scientist is going into space in search of her love. Then you've got bullshit like Matt Damon has gone nuts and wants to kill everyone so he can escape so the film can spend some time on an astronaut fistfight scene, you've got Michael Caine reciting do not go gentle into that good night like 5 fucking times (this is how the Nolan bros establish theme - take a piece of something else which is very loosely relevant to their film (dying is bad) and hammer at it endlessly), you've got Casey Affleck who won't leave his poison farm because he grew up there or something. It's an emotional film written by a couple of robots who just imitate stock characters and emotions they must have seen in other movies or something because none of it feels remotely genuine.
I have more to say but I've run myself down at the moment, just woke up. I find Nolan's positioning as the top director to be really weird. I don't think he's very good.