Interstellar ★★★★

Often brazen and bold, often watered down and oversentimental, and often reminiscent of an extended outtake from a McConaughey Lincoln car comercial monologue, Interstellar is many things and among them it may also be Nolan's most awe inspiring and interesting project to date.

Im hesitant to call it his best film because Interstellar still exhibits some of Nolans worst habits as a writer and visual auteur. Characters frequently break out into poetic soliloquy mid sentence or mumble fortune cookie philosophy to drive incredibly simplistic points home. Even more so than his other films given this type of story's predisposition to grandoise thoughts. The film also has a drab Nolanesque color palette that doesnt do the potential beauty of interstellar, terrestrial planet hopping and wormhole travel the justice it rightly deserves. (If it hadnt aged so poorly, I would say Contact is the most beautiful realization of interdimensional travel and first contact) Even for a film maker that values practical effects, this is one film that wouldve benefited from some more diverse digital visual artistry.

Even so, I cannot deny the simple power of Interstellar and how easily it engages. When it gets down to it, the space travel sequences are breathtaking and exciting. Sometimes even frightening. Nolan surprisingly got most of the emotional grit right this time around as well which he usually fumbles in grandstanding fashion. Id still like to see him try and write a story without a dead family member thrown into the mix but I'll be damned if Cooper watching the holotapes from his son after returning from the time dilated planet is not the most emotionally effective scene in Nolans entire catalogue. I dont think he will ever capture humanity in that light again for the rest of his career and he has McConaughey mostly to thank for that scene.

As far as the other stuff goes it seems Nolan was floating between 2001's cold depiction of space travel and something more in touch with humanity. In his balancing act between emotion and spectacle this forces Nolan to circumnavigate world building details much like he did in Inception where he establishes the rules but doesnt flesh them out all that much. You want more of the world but Nolan wont give it to you.

And for the first time since Batman Begins I was kind of ok with it because everything else was working well enough.

But Nolan will give you loud noises and goosebumps thats a given. If you want a fully realized scifi world go watch Hardware you fuckin nerds this is EPIC CINEMA!!

Really bummed I didnt catch this in theaters but I was going through an edgy Nolan hating phase after that piece of dog doo doo The Dark Knight Rises so in my mind he's made up a little ground on that front.