Saturday, November 13, 2010
Moon: A Film Review...
Moon is one of the most enjoyable Sci-Fi movies I've seen in a while.
I love District 9 and there has been a decent number of solid Sci-Fi films of late but this is a whole different animal. Moon is a far more introspective film that really deals with what it means to be human, what memory is, and other existential/philosophical issues. As the film's director Duncan Jones (son of David Bowie by the way) was a philosophy major in college I guess this doesn't come as much of a surprise.
Jones has specifically created, and stated, that Moon is purposely derivative of the great Sci-Fi films of his youth including 2001, Alien, Silent Running, Outland, etc. and it shows. The mood, look, feel, sound, tension and texture are all out of a different era of film making. Additionally, one of the other creators of this film has worked extensively with Tony Scott, Ridley Scott's (director of Blade Runner, Alien, etc.) brother and the film was produced by Sting's wife Trudie Styler so the movie, despite its minimal budget and Indie cred has a solid foundation.
Sam Rockwell puts in an excellent performance in two (three?) roles and is virtually the sole actor in the entire film. It says a lot about both the actor and story that a single actor/character can be on screen for nearly every moment of a film and take up 90% of the dialogue and yet the the film remains intensely interesting and enjoyable throughout.
Kevin Spacey is present here in voice only as Gerty, the AI possessing computer system in place to protect and manage the Moon station in which Rockwell's character is located. Spacey's tone and dialogue marginally reference HAL from 2001 (how could they not) but differentiate themselves so that you are not constantly thinking about how HAL would have sounded in Gerty's place.
The special effects here are also well done and were created almost entirely with model miniatures vs. most current films that would just use CGI to make the Moon/vehicles/etc. come "alive". These were done by the same fellow who created the Nostromo for the original Alien. Again, Jones has drawn upon some of the best in the business to create a wonderful film.
If you are a Sci-Fi fan and/or enjoy more introspective, moody films this will rate as one of the better films of the past few years. If you demand lots of action, characters, "witty" dialogue, quick edits, and other trappings of most modern films then this will not be for you...and you'll be missing out.