Four hours ago on Reddit a man called “Toss My Salad Gently”, who sounds like a fair-minded guy with an actual sense of reason and judgment (as opposed to being some fluttery falsetto fanboy raving about all things Nolan), began to offer a semi-serious assessment of Interstellar following yesterday’s Fort Hood screening. Just a series of random, uncoordinated but intelligent-sounding comments, but you can sense a guy who knows a couple of things and has an idea of what’s good and what’s not. The bottom line is that while TMSG shared some flattering observations about Interstellar, he wasn’t over the moon about it. Definitely admiring and respectful but no cartwheels.
Three TSMG up-thoughts: (a) “It’s a really, really ambitious and enjoyable film,” (b) “It definitely had its moments! I found myself trying to hold back the tears a couple times” and (c) “2001: A Space Odyssey comparisons are pretty valid [and yet] the difference is Nolan didn’t take the plunge and leave a lot of things up for interpretation like Kubrick did…there is a bit of thinking to do after watching, but I believe it is accessible to anyone who pays attention.”
But he also offered a ranking of how Interstellar stands up to previous Nolan films, and here it is: (1) tie between Memento (8.5/10) and The Dark Knight (8.5/10), (2) Inception (8/10), (3) tie between Interstellar (7.5/10) and Batman Begins (7.5/10) and (4) The Dark Knight Rises (7/10).
And then he said this: “I just want to say that I feel bad because I’m really not any kind of film aficionado. Just someone who likes movies a lot. It was a really, really ambitious and enjoyable film. My rating is based off story, delivery of story, visuals, the music score and a couple other things. Some of you will like it more than I did but this is how I would rate it.
“I also want to say that I read [an] article [in which] Christopher Nolan [said] it’s more like 2001: A Space Odyssey. I was definitely getting some Space Odyssey vibes from the film. In the sense that he was using these amazing visuals to try and represent something that is unknown to human eyes. The music score also helped in making these particular scenes good.
“I would like to reiterate that I don’t do this for a living and am just a movie enthusiast. So, to answer your question, no, I don’t have an example of a 10/10 LOL. A few of my personal closest in the 9-9.5 range would be The Departed, The Wolf of Wall Street and The Prestige.”
With the exception of the decent-but-far-from-stupendous The Prestige, the man has taste!
Random comments: “The first bit of the movie is exclusively Earth but as soon as they take off it switches back and forth spending more time in space. I’d say pretty close to 50/50 but probably more 40/60 (Space/Earth).
“I would say it has more ‘up and down’s’ than Inception.” (What’s he talking about when he says up and down?) That doesn’t keep the very tense moments from being butt-clenching though!
“The thing you’ll want to keep in mind is Gravity‘s visuals revolved around real-life things and never traveled far from the atmosphere. Interstellar does a fantastic job of representing the unknown.
“I liked [the score], man! Not as loud and in your face (or ears) as Inception‘s score, but I think it supplemented the movie very well. Actually another similarity we can draw from this film to Space Odyssey. As in the score was unique and really picked up the same time they were showing something visually stunning.
A reader mentions that Jessica Chastain “said it’s a love story?” Toss My Salad Gently says, “Kind of…partly, I’d say. But the bigger theme is a little more straightforward, I think. Saving the people of Earth.
“McConaughey’s performance was solid, like most of his are for me, especially in recent years. Hathaway was probably my favorite. By the time Chastain comes onto the screen, her character is in a certain mindset that I’ll describe as bitter. She does a decent job with this, but I wouldn’t put her performance up there with the other leads.
“Like I said, that’s my own personal assessment, but I’m sure some people will like it more [than I]. What I really tried to do when rating this film was separating the big names, Christopher Nolan and Matthew McConaughey, both people I’ve circle-jerked over, and give you guys an objective review. Or as objective as I could get :)”