Moon (2009)

IN SHORT:  WHEN SHOULD YOU SEE THIS MOVIE?  Moon is a good sci-fi movie, but because of its limited release if it isn’t playing in your theater, don’t bother traveling but rent or buy the DVD when it comes out.

Full Review:

The Moon has always been a source of wonder and mystery.  It is so far away, yet much closer than the stars.  Man has reached the Moon, but there is still so much that is unknown about it.  It is a bridge between mystery and fact, and director Duncan Jones uses it as a brilliant setting for his science fiction film Moon.

The movie stars Sam Rockwell as a lunar astronaut also named Sam stationed alone on the Moon for three years.  He isn’t entirely alone, because the AI computer GERTY (Kevin Spacey) is constantly following him.  Energy companies have discovered vast amounts of Helium on the Moon, and they now mine that Helium in order to power the Earth.  As Sam begins his last two weeks stationed in the mining facility, his mind begins to break down and he soon realizes he just might not be able to make it back.

It is quite obvious that the main intention of Moon was to pay respect to the older science fiction movies like Alien and 2001: A Space Odyssey, and it is a great homage to the genre indeed.  GERTY is possibly one of my favorite AI computers ever in a movie, because it constantly shows its mood through a series of different smiley faces, and has Kevin Spacey’s voice.  The overall story of Moon is pretty good, and it definitely tugs a bit on your emotions because the main character Sam is so real and relatable.  It is a bit more of an art film, but I have found that the mixture of art and Sci-Fi is a brilliant combination.

The absolute key ingredient to making Moon was finding a capable actor because it is essentially a one man show, and they picked a winner with Sam Rockwell.  Rockwell gives one of his best performances to date, and while it might be a little early to predict I can see him getting an Oscar nomination for his role.  The other great thing about this picture is the special effects.  Since the budget was so low this could have been a disaster, but the shots of the Moon Rovers and Harvesters were astonishingly realistic, and a typical movie goer would think this had at least a 40 million dollar budget.  It is amazing how much more was accomplished with this tiny budget compared to the $200 million dollars poured into Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen. 

Overall Moon is a complete film.  It isn’t groundbreaking, but it accomplished everything it set out to be, which are a great homage and a chance for Sam Rockwell to really show his acting prowess.  I found myself leaving the theater with a great feeling of satisfaction that I have only received from a couple movies this year so far.

7/10

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