Interstellar is the latest film from visionary filmmaker Christopher Nolan. In a movie landscape that is populated by superheroes and remakes, Nolan reminds us of the power and beauty that cinema can have. Experimental and challenging, Interstellar is beyond, light years beyond anything seen in years. Nolan has made a movie for movie lovers. Inventive, beautiful and something that pushes the boundaries in thought and the craft.
The Gospel According to Science or Man
If Interstellar is anything it is a love letter to science and to the indefatigable spirit of humanity. Science is the faith that will save us. When faced with the unknown man must apply the scientific method to deduce the truth. This plays out throughout the entire movie as Cooper is sent off with the crew of the Endurance to find out which of the previously surveyed planets is best suited for human colonization. NASA and the crew talk about the “them” that have placed the wormhole in our solar system which has enabled humanity to travel to another galaxy in search of a new home. It is never discussed if this was a supernatural event, but is assumed to be alien in origin. In the end, it is not aliens but advanced humanity that has learned the secrets of space and time like Time Lords, who have created the wormhole. Humanity needs no outside savior, it is ourselves that will save us through science and the exploration of the universe.
Cooper is the humanistic Jesus, who saves humanity through his “death” and “resurrection” and then finally goes to prepare a place for us in a new Eden with “Eve”. It is the humanistic gospel which just happens to mirror what Scripture tells us. Yet in scripture it is man who is incapable of saving himself, who needs someone to reach into our time and space, show us the way to a “new heaven and a new earth”. Even when trying to tell the ultimate in man’s abilities Nolan cannot find a better structure than the Gospel of Jesus and that is saying something.
Once in a while, a movie comes along that challenges and changes the way we look at the art of film; Interstellar is doing that. With its inventive use of sound design, music and dialogue as well as the shear magnitude of the visual feast, especially in IMAX, Interstellar will leave it’s mark in the movie industry as well as the viewer. You just may never look up at the stars the same way again.