Movie Review: The Martian

The Martian is the first Ridley Scott movie that had my attention in years. Seriously, I respect the man a lot for bringing so many classics to the table in so many genres, but you have to admit he wasn’t on his A-game when it came to the last ten years. This movie, however, has changed everything because it really brings his talent to the forefront. This film was scripted by Drew Goddard, and Scott wasn’t brought on until late in the game so really all he had to focus on was directing, and man did he pull out all the stops. This was so good in fact that I’d recommend everyone to try not to pee when you see this; seriously, this is two and a half hours long and you just want to stay seated for the whole journey. It also doesn’t feel as long as it is, in fact, it feels like a hundred-minute movie versus a hundred-fifty minute one.

The story starts off with the mission on Mars making an emergency departure, and in the process one of the astronauts gets caught up and left behind. Everyone thought he was dead until, surprise, he wasn’t. Then they have to decide if it’s worth going back to rescue him. While this plot is very simple, like Mad Max: Fury Road, The Martian really has it’s strengths in how well made this simple movie was. The acting was really good, and they had some really big names in this. The visuals of Mars is breathtaking and mesmerizing. The music makes everything sadder or happier, as it should, but it also brings about this underlying theme of hope that transcends into the characters.

Matt Damon knocks it out of the park. When I first heard about this film I was questioning his casting, but from what you see of him, and what he brings to the table, I can’t think of a better guy who could balance the soul crushing reality that there’s over a 90% chance that you’re¬†going to die, and his rational brain kicking in trying to calm himself down and look on the positives one step at a time. And that’s what I really like about this film. It’s in space, it’s about an astronaut alone on a planet, and it’s about moral dilemmas.

Another aspect of this film that I really liked was that it didn’t treat the audience like idiots. You usually see in TV shows that whenever a smart guy pops up they’re spouting three scientific words for every normal one, and that just doesn’t happen in real life. The dialogue in real life is simpler, even with smart people because they want to be casual. They want their brain to take a break. In this film, the science is explained really well. Whenever they were talking about schematics and how things were done I understood the majority of what they were conveying, anyone who’s taken high school science classes will understand, and whenever they did get into something a little too complicated then they’d use diagrams and visuals to convey what they meant. Heck, I felt smart after watching this movie, not only did I get a great story but it made me feel smarter? Now that is talent.

This could easily have been another Alien, or Prometheus in that the characters are being killed off and there’s this everlasting dread looming in the air, but what The Martian shows is in fact hope. There were so many times that character were cracking jokes and bursts of scenes that would instill hope within the audience and the characters. I expected to be an emotional wreck after watching this, especially with Ridley Scott directing, but I left the theater with a smile on my face, and warmth in my heart. This was a really well made film that had great acting, breathtaking visuals, and one of the few films where you should experience this with lots of strangers because The Martian is a film I would love to see again, and I’m sure that this film will get a lot of recognition.

Written By: Cody Enos

I'm a film enthusiast that has a passion for film that only grows more every year.

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