Saturday, September 12, 2009


One Way Ticket

Written and directed by Duncan Jones, Moon is strangely unique because while it contained a series of familiar cliches, it still managed to string itself together in an engaging manner, also in a large part thanks to Sam Rockwell's stellar one-man show, acting against himself with the occasional banter with a computer voiced by Kevin Spacey and represented by a smiley emoticon interface.

In the future, Man has found that we can power our planet harnessing the H3 gas found in abundance in our moon. As such, Lunar Industries had begun sending astronaut contractors to the moon in order to oversee the harnessing of the vital resource. Each contract lasts 3 years, and we are soon introduced to Sam Bell (Rockwell), who has 2 weeks more to the end of contract, and just cannot wait to get out of his career isolation, where the live communications link has been severed, and his contact with the outside world relies heavily on pre-recorded messages being sent to and fro.

To say anything more would be to spoil the story, since a major turn of events happen very early, and from then on it's the posing of questions ranging from existentialism, to the circle of life. The plot elements in Jones' story are nothing new, and in fact quite overused in contemporary science fiction films of late, though the advantage here is that its quiet, soundless environment provides plenty of room for thought as opposed to loud action films. It allows its ideas to sink in, while at the same time, thanks to Rockwell's tour de force performance, allowed you to buy into his plight, and experience the same level of despair and disbelief of the truth, and that degree of loneliness should you happen to be in his shoes.

The production sets and miniatures used are intricately designed, which will provide space junkies a field day in just gawking at the level of detail, which is quite impressive given that it's shot on a relatively shoestring budget. And who can fail to mention the magic of Clint Mansell's score which once again provides an additional dimension with its extremely memorable theme that would set the entire mood and tone for the film, which hypnotically guides you through the story and move you.

Moon has plenty of positives going for it, especially if you prefer a thinking man's science fiction film with great acting against beautiful sets accentuated with a wonderful musical score, and despite some familiar themes, you'd find yourself appreciating this simple work of art.

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