Interstellar: The Unanswered Non-Sciency Questions

Stared into the wormhole that is Interstellar and found a lot of plot-holes hiding down there? Or maybe you are just confused that a wormhole is an actual scientific thing and not something in your garden?

Interstellar certainly isn’t an easy ride for the regular movie-goer used to airy blockbusters with no narrative nutrition (Read the review HERE!). It leaves a lot of questions whizzing round your head as the credits whizz up the (IMAX?) screen.

Forget physicists, scientists and your granddad’s theories on the movie’s plausibility. Here are 5 questions all normal people are asking:

5. Why did Matt Damon want to kill Cooper?

Matt Damon took a strange route to getting off his planet. He decided to lie to his visitors for a day or two before taking Cooper to a precipice and cracking his helmet, all so he can take the ship to safety. Nice one Matt, you ended up exploding the ship, yourself, and in the process making sure no one can get home. Thanks.

4. Why did Cooper choose to knock the books in exactly the same way when in the 5th dimension?

Because he’d already done it.

‘But he hadn’t because he did it later on in the story?’

Yes but the younger Cooper had already seen the older Cooper knock the books so it had to happen the same.

‘Yes but…’

No. Please no. My brain is hurting.

3. Why did the tractors move at the beginning of the film?

The books fell off the shelf because Cooper was in a black hole pushing them, but why did the tractors move by themselves? Did Cooper fancy pushing a few tractors from his infinite 5th dimension?

2. The whole watch morse-code thing…

It wouldn’t be a 5-minute job communicating the most complex quantum theory ever devised by mankind via not only morse-code, but morse-code translated from the flicking second-hand of a wrist-watch. Surely old Murph must have stopped herself about 3 months in and questioned her sanity, hunched over an old, dusty clock.

1. How did Cooper fall into a black hole and survive?

Apparently the temperature surrounding a black hole can be hundreds of millions of degrees. But he just did ok?! It’s Matthew McConaughey – who’s gonna argue with him? Not me.

In all seriousness – maybe the whole ending of the movie was a dream? See Inception for a similar trick by Nolan. Speaking of which, here are 6 Similarities between Interstellar and Inception that you can’t deny…

Got the answers to any of these conundrums? 

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Interstellar & Inception: The 6 Similarities You Can’t Deny [SPOILERS]

Interstellar has finally arrived and it is exploding our brains, or at least our eardrums. Read the Interstellar Movie Review HERE!

Sporting Director Christopher Nolan’s trademark style of epic tales told from personal perspectives, the movie seems a natural companion piece to Inception. 

But the similarities go a bit more specific than that in 6 distinct ways. Take a look…

6. Michael Caine playing Professor Father Figure

Michael Caine in Interstellar (left) and Inception (right).
Michael Caine in Interstellar (left) and Inception (right).

In Interstellar Michael Caine plays Amelia’s father and Cooper’s ex-professor at NASA.

In Inception Michael Caine plays Cobb’s father and is also professor, shown above at the front of a lecture hall.

We touched upon Nolan’s Caine obsession in 10 Reasons You Should Be Even More Excited About Interstellar!

5. A Male lead (name beginning with C), a Female sidekick (A) and a Female relative (M)

Cooper and Amelia in Interstellar (left), Cobb and Ariadne in Inception (right).
Cooper and Amelia in Interstellar (left), Cobb and Ariadne in Inception (right).

In Interstellar the main character is Cooper (Matthew McConaughey) and his sidekick is Amelia (Anne Hathaway). The plot is anchored by Cooper’s desperate relationship with his daughter, Murph (Jessica Chastain).

In Inception the main character is Cobb (Leonardo DiCaprio) and his sidekick is Ariadne (Ellen Page). The plot is anchored by Cobb’s splintered relationship with his dead wife Mal (Marion Cotillard).

Like McConaughey? Think he’s better than Affleck? Find out the king of the career reboot…

4. Time stretching/contracting

Interstellar and Inception Tim stretching

In Interstellar, Cooper and Amelia visit a planet so close to a black hole that time is contracted, meaning every few minutes they spend on the planet there are decades simultaneously passing on earth. Upon re-entry to the orbiting shuttle, they meet their now-elderly crew member who had been waiting for their return for 27 years.

In Inception our protagonists have the freedom of time as they burrow deeper into lower levels of dreaming. The lowest level – ‘limbo’ – allows you to spend lifetimes down there while only a minute passes here in reality.

3. Strange kinda-Earth-like worlds

Unfortunately, an image of Interstellar's odd new world cannot be had as of yet.
Inception‘s ‘limbo’. Unfortunately, an image of Interstellar‘s odd new world cannot yet be found. (Damn anti-piracy…)

In Interstellar, Cooper wakes up to find himself on Earth. But is it Earth? There’s green grass, a baseball game… Oh wait. The land is twisting upon itself like a goddam curl of hair.

In Inception, Cobb shows Ariadne the world he built with his wife in ‘limbo’. There are buildings, there is ocean, he has a home – but it all seems a little bit different. More DEPRESSING.

2. Protagonist sprung from purgatory when escape seemed impossible

'Everything feels a bit weird, guys...'
‘Everything feels a bit weird, guys…’

In Interstellar, Cooper is literally trapped in a black hole. There seems absolutely no way out, not even by fiddling with a little watch across space and time. Has Nolan written himself into a corner (or an infinite 5th dimension)? No. Cooper wakes up minutes later in a hospital bed, absolutely fine. Problem solved. 

Was Inception‘s ending a dream? How on earth did Cobb escape ‘limbo’ and find himself awake back on the plane in reality? His chances seemed extremely slim only a few minutes ago…

Is IMAX worth it? Read the Interstellar IMAX Review HERE!

1. Resolution Deathbed Scene

Inception's Hospital Bed Scene
Is this Interstellar or Inception? I can’t tell.

The climax of Interstellar involves Cooper finally setting eyes on his now elderly beloved daughter Murph just one more time. She forgives her Dad for leaving her as a child, giving Cooper the strength to set out and find Amelia. He leaves the room before she passes away…

The climax of Inception builds to a tender scene by a hospital bed of Fischer’s (Cillian Murphy) dying Dad, where Fischer manages to find peace and strength from his old man’s words right before he passes away…

CLICK HERE for the 5 Unanswered Non-Sciency Questions in Interstellar…

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Interstellar: The IMAX Review [NO SPOILERS]

Want more critique? Read the Interstellar Movie Review HERE (short and snappy – don’t worry).

Interstellar has been released on every platform imaginable (bar 3D), from 4K digital to 35mm film. So is it worth IMAX’s higher ticket price?

10 Reasons You Should Be Even More Excited About Interstellar

In a word – yes.

The visuals from cinematographer Hoyte van Hoytema are stunning and were literally intended for the IMAX experience; Interstellar has the most 70mm IMAX footage of any movie in history.

What is IMAX? A taller image. An IMAX screen is almost as tall as it is wide, and Director Christopher Nolan used film stock specifically for these dimensions in order to experience the movie’s world in an unbeatable fashion. 

A lot of the movie plays out with normal dimensions of a cinema screen, but when the movie flips to IMAX footage you see the black bars disappear from the top and bottom, the image flooding your vision for mind-blowing moments such as the journey through a wormhole and the descent into a black hole. These changes in image size, or ‘aspect ratio’, are rarely noticeable as you become immersed in the storytelling.

Not seen Interstellar? Yes you have. It’s called Inception: 6 Similarities You Can’t Deny

Another element is the sound. Interstellar is full of gut-wrenching audio helping you to experience the writhing of the space shuttle and the scale of the planets, but IMAX also allows you to experience the quiet moments of the movie. The clarity of sound is such that the silent moments floating in space feel as empty as intended, rather than being spoiled by buzz or whirr.

Furthermore, Hans Zimmer’s score must be experienced at IMAX. Offering powerfully fragile melodies in moments of gargantuous action and emotion is an enlightening change from deep, bassy and orchestral scores. The soundtrack is gentle, magnificent and brooding and every minutia of it must be heard.

CLICK HERE for the 5 Unanswered Non-Sciency Questions in Interstellar…

So no 3D like the similarly incredible space-set Gravity? It works. For all the sophistication of Gravity it was at heart a roller-coaster ride; an unbearable and claustrophobic experiment of a movie playing amongst flying debris and safety cords. It was designed and ideal for 3D in the best possible sense.

With Interstellar there must be no gimmicks or novelty and such it is fit for IMAX. Nolan wants us to experience space exploration with the cold hand of reality on our shoulder, rather than with the diverting spectacle of unnatural 3D images. Both movies are different and perfect for their chosen mediums.

What about the Movie itself? Read the Interstellar Movie Review HERE

What did you think of the IMAX? Share your thoughts with us on Twitter @MovieMasticator, or on Our Facebook Page. 

CLICK HERE for the latest on Interstellar…

Not seen the movie? Watch the most recent trailer below…