Interstellar is no doubt the most powerful cinematic experience I’ve had in a while. Between impressive trailers leading systematically to seriously disappointing movies that always lack that little something (like a main topic or an exciting dialogue) that keeps me hooked on the screen, I might have given up on the possibility to find a truly thrilling movie any time soon. Nolan’s Interstellar gave me hope in the cinema again.
Without disclosing anything of the topic, which could not have been more contemporary, I’d say Nolan has created a mind-blowing movie in terms of visuals, beautifully supported by two exceptional actors. Matthew McConaughey who has kept on dazzling me with one exceptional performance after the other lately (from the monumental and practically unforgettable 5 minutes’ appearance in The Wolf of Wall Street to the flawless interpretation of an HIV dying cowboy in Dallas Buyers Club) is pivotal in Nolan’s tale. Jessica Chastain, timidly marketed by Hollywood still, but shining a powerful light in all her roles – I was particularly impressed with her role in Zero Dark Thirty, a movie, that if you asked me, received much less appreciation that it truly deserved (and I’m sure all Kathryn Bigelow fans will agree) – is once more stunningly natural and convincing here. Two absolutely perfect performances delivered in a supremely intelligent movie filled with exciting scenes and dialogue exchanges on the backdrop of uplifting Hans Zimmer music. What more can one ask from a movie?
When Cooper (McConaughey’s character) struggles to breathe at one point, I feel strangely breathless myself. I count the seconds till I breathe again and hope Cooper will keep on breathing, too. Remaining still in one’s chair is impossible. I’ve seen people bending towards the big screen, visibly alert and absorbing the tension in the same way I did, being part of the action.
The movie literally takes hold of you. This because it has all the ingredients that make one live and feel the movie. Nolan embarks us on a powerful sensory journey. He is possibly not of this world himself, so skilled are his endeavours. The details are fascinating and work together like little stars in a wonderfully sparkling galaxy. I’m always fascinated by how coherent the little bits and pieces, the fragmentary action and flashbacks come together under Nolan directions. He cannot make simple movies, there is no A to B flow, there’s X and then there’s T, Y, and then he throws you into A – sequences unfold irregularly but never randomly in front of our eyes; no one can predict what comes next.
Nolan gives me headaches: his scenes are so filled with intelligence, humour, wisdom, emotions, logic, rapidity, possibility, imagination, novelty, that it shakes the whole of you. He can easily give you a ride through a black hole and other places you didn’t suspect. You couldn’t have. It’s his universe, so impeccably architectured that you have no option but to follow and be dazzled. Nolan is difficult because he obliges you to be 100% present, to follow the course of the action which is preferred nonlinear. He commands involvement, mentally and emotionally, which is strenuous. Interstellar is a beautiful, sensitive, spectacular accomplishment of one of the liveliest and most spirited directors of our times.
Looking at the script, some lines have the potential to stay with us for a while. “Love is the one thing we’re capable of perceiving that transcends time and space,” says Anne Hathaway in the movie and guess what? It doesn’t sound cliche. Probably because it fits the movie context so well when it is uttered – and time and timing are Nolan’s obsessions and specialties, after all. He knows this is bound to resonate with the audience. Even if the movie reality is mould to be dramatic, Nolan powders it with a great dose of humour. It has great pace and tension. It has logical, meaningful scenes. It has rhythm and exceptional soundtracks. I personally take a bow; Nolan is a tremendously skilled director.
It was about time I remembered what an intense movie was like. About time a movie asked so much of me. Interstellar is clearly my “wow” movie so far this year. I’m running out of words to convince you to go to the cinema and see it. I hope you will, for it is rare to see movies of such exquisite complexity nowadays. Unless they are signed Christopher Nolan, that is.