A team of astronauts on the first mission to Mars crashes onto the surface, losing contact with Earth. With no other recourse, and help millions of miles away, the crew is forced to make ... See full summary »
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A team of astronauts on the first mission to Mars crashes onto the surface, losing contact with Earth. With no other recourse, and help millions of miles away, the crew is forced to make desperate choices in order to stay alive. Will they be able to survive as the minutes slip away? Written by
The conversation between Commander Vishniac and the TV newscaster could not have taken place in real time as the distance between Earth and Mars is 3-5 light minutes, which means every message exchange would have been delayed by 6-10 minutes, the time for message and answer to cross the interplanetary distance. See more »
It's 298 days since the first manned mission to Mars left the Alpha International Space Station. The spaceship Aries and her crew of 7 men and women from different nations are now going into orbit around the red planet.
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Brilliant; different; but clearly not for everyone!
I was lucky to buy - and watch - this movie before I looked it up on IMDb, as the comments here would doubtless have put me off! I respect anyone's right to not like a movie of course, and to say so. But I am surprised by some of the reasons given.
'The acting was terrible'/'the script was rubbish': a ha, OK...so we all know how people in this situation should act and what they should say? But of course we do; they should act in the expertly modulated delivery of a professionally trained and honed actor - voices dripping with the carefully rising degrees of tension dictated by the director's dramatic vision...except, oh wait, that makes _real_ people in _real_ situations terribly bad actors (just listen carefully to yourselves and your workmates or family sometime)! And this is the problem I have with almost every movie that depicts real people such as, in this case, astronauts and scientists. _Real_ people actually do talk all at once, hesitate, talk in monotone when they're trying to mask their feelings, etc etc.
That brings me to _this_ movie which surprised me with its honest attempt at realism: the voices sounded authentic, as distinct from other movies in this sub-genre such as 'Mission to Mars' and 'Red Planet' where dialog was all "acted" and the astronauts seemed like the writers' _idea_ of an astronaut rather than a real astronaut. However in this movie I suspect the almost documentary, real-people-talking feel of it was a deliberate instruction on the director's part.
'the story did not explain everything that happened': hey, welcome to the real world people! The fact this movie did _not_ neatly tie everything up struck me as one of its best features. It added (again) to the realism.
Realism (note I do not say 'reality', this is fiction after all) - combined with an amazingly evocative sense of atmosphere and mystery (aided by a superb soundtrack that continued to haunt me) - is why I think this movie is brilliant. Actually one of the best I have ever seen.
As a scientist (albeit decidedly _not_ an astronaut and decidedly _not_ having ever been "Stranded") I found the voices, reactions, decisions, and thought processes authentic; the events and experiences throughout the movie believable; and even the climactic discovery credible: indeed to me it mimicked perfectly a sense of what scientific mystery is all about. I found it a totally satisfying movie experience.
The voting clearly shows this movie is not for everyone! Only a small minority gave it ten as I did; and the most frequent choices were either 1 or 6. Still I wonder if some of the sixers at least might not reconsider on a more thoughtful viewing, looking at it as a highly non-formulaic work?
I note the director (who also took a lead acting role here, 'very badly' of course) has one other movie to her credit, apparently with a documentary style to it. I think that reveals a lot about her approach here. I also think I shall watch her career-arc with interest.
39 of 53 people found this review helpful.
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