Interstellar is easily one of the most exciting and engrossing films of the year. For me, I think this is largely due to the immersive score of Hans Zimmer, which, to my ears at least, is at times heavily influenced by the Symphony #7 of Jean Sibelius (the finest of Symphonies ever written IMO). Watching the film in the theater, the sound (which at first seemed a tad too loud) was jarring and enveloped me in the goings on completely. The rockets vibrated the seats. Shattering glass caused me to wince in anticipation of pain. I can’t get that kind of sound at home (not without lawsuits from the other residents of the building anyway), and is a good reason to see this one in theaters.
Director Nolan, from imdb.com:
He also wants to give greater enhancement to the audio experience this time around. He also stated that he has “very ambitious sound mix plans. [I want to] give audiences an incredible immersive experience. The technical aspects are going to be more important than any film I’ve made before.
I think Mr. Nolan has succeeded here.
Sometimes, because I’m very sensitive to sound and can be overly influenced by it, I try (afterwards, of course) to imagine watching a certain film muted to see how much I’ve been influenced by the audio as opposed to the story, visuals etc etc. I think the answer in the case of Interstellar is: a lot. When I think back on the film and subtract the incredible audio /music effects, I’m left wondering how we’re supposed to believe anyone can fly into a black hole. I understand from reading about the involvement of Dr. Kip Thorne the film is supposed to be more or less within the realms of possible science, but that flies in the face of seeing the craft skim (or did it fly right through?) the hot (as in plasma) gas circling the black hole. Or maybe it was not as close as it appeared to be…? Maybe I’ll pay closer attention to these details if I’m lucky enough to catch the film in IMAX before it leaves theaters. But weird little bits of science-fiction here and there nagged at me as I drifted occasionally from the film to wonder “how the hell is that even remotely possible?”. Frozen cloud structures? Yeah, maybe, but not likely. Unless as in ice surface, I suppose.
Anywho, with the music literally moving me around, I enjoyed Interstellar probably more than I’ve enjoyed any film in years. It was fun. It was sad. It was scary. It was thought provoking. It was beautiful.
Part The Rover, part 2001, A Space Odyssey, part Knowing, Interstellar quickly makes my list of favorite sci-fi films. I will take this sort of epic film making any day, niggles and all, over what I consider to be tragically flawed attempts like 1997’s Event Horizon or 2007’s Sunshine, both of which start off promising (especially the later), but devolve into sludge by the end. I can’t even say for sure yet that I like the end of Interstellar – I can only say I left the theater feeling like a million bucks and happy to be alive. What more can one ask from a film?