Sometime in the not so distant future, NASA is sending manned missions to Mars. They travel for 6 months, stay a few weeks collecting samples and data and stuff, then travel the 6 months back home, laden with scientific cargo. One one such mission, a particularly ferocious sand storm catches the crew unawares and they flee the planet leaving behind one of their team, Watney (Damon) who they all presume is dead.
But Watney is not dead.
He is, however, stranded alone on a planet some 225 million miles from home. He has a very limited supply of food, water and other essentials for life. Worst of all, no one realises he is alive.
When NASA does realise he is alive, the race is on to bring Watney home.
I assume you’ve watched the trailer so you know Watney is very clever, pulls it together and starts growing his own food. He still has to exist on very meagre rations though and Damon’s physical transformation is rather scary. Think Christian Bale is The Machinist. Yeah that kinda scary.
After Watney makes contact with Earth the real drama begins. NASA then, as now, is in an awkward position with the public, mostly about spending. Of course. Blah blah blah. I’m all for pouring resources into NASA and space travel rather than wars….but that’s just me. However I digress. The reality is that no one is going to leave a human being stranded on another planet to simply starve to death.
The Martian is an amazing movie. There is heaps of sciencey stuff that looks and sounds extremely difficult but it’s delivered in such a way that you don’t feel stupid. You always know what he’s trying to do and why. You may be vague on the exact how but you still get it.
The drama is full on and the tension is high. There are as many high moments as there are lows and you never see it coming and you never know what will happen next.
Damon is, as always, a thoroughly likable hero and one you absolutely want NASA to spend 800 trazillion dollars on bringing home safely. Perhaps this is why the movie works. A less amiable actor and we may have been less engaged in his rescue.
Don’ t miss this one the big screen. I watched in 3D but you know me…..whatever. 2D will do just fine
4 1/2 stars
Love Flick xx
Director : Ridley Scott
Starring : Matt Damon, Jessica Chastain, Kristen Wiig, Jeff Daniels, Michael Pena, Sean Bean, Kate Mara, Sebastian Stan, Aksel Hennie, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Mackenzie Davis
Running Time : 144 minutes
Release Date : In Cinemas Now