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Sci -Fi - Space Travel

Ad Astra (2019)


Duration 2h 3m Rating (UK) 12A
Source of story An original screenplay
Director James Gray
Writers/Script James Gray, Ethan Gross
Starring Brad Pitt, Tommy Lee Jones, Ruth Negga, Donald Sutherland, John Ortiz, Liv Tyler,

Elevator Pitch: The earth is being subjected to power surges possibly originating from the vicinity of Neptune where, space explorer Clifford McBride had disappeard 16 years earlier. SpaceCom recruit astronaut Major Roy McBride, Clifford’s son, to go to Mars to attempt to contact his father, by a super laser communications system. The communication, or lack of it, motivates McBride to secretly board a space craft which is scheduled to go to Neptune to eliminate his father, and after a fight he ends up as the sole crew member on the craft, faced with the possibility of having to kill his dad – if he is still alive.

Content: Nothing to offend apart from the plot holes. McBride falls from a communications structure in low orbit, but survives. He goes to the moon and is attacked by pirates during a space buggy ride to the moon base. He then travels on a rocket to Mars, during which he and the captain visit a space station after an SOS and are attacked by baboons. The captain dies and McBride has to land the space ship. Then he gets on the Neptune ship and fights with the crew, ending up by himself o the voyage to Neptune.

A View:  The critics really liked this, maybe because Brad Pitt spoke very slowly most of the time, but so did everyone else, making this outing quite boring. I have written a novel about space travel in the near future, and all I can say is that if what has passed as an acceptable film script had been a novel it would have been torn apart. Just a couple of points. How did “space pirates” get to the moon. Why are they still using Moon Rovers, which would have taken two days to get from the landing site to the take-off site. Have space craft lost the ability to orbit heavenly bodies? But all that being said, if you are a Brad Pitt fan go for it, if you are an SF fan maybe don’t.

Additional Info: Just for once I was temptd to count the nunber of Visual Effects personnel listed on IMDb. There were 315 of them, one called Rob McBride.

About Victor R Gibson

Author of this site three technical books and two novels



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