November 11th, 2014
07:04 AM ET

The wonder of Interstellar

Interstellar is a good movie. It's not a great movie. But I still found it an enjoyable ride.

It's an odd thing to say, because in some ways it's my least favorite film by director Christopher Nolan. Objectively speaking, it's flawed. It feels far too long, dragging on to make sure every last loose end is tied up. Dialogue sometimes feels less like normal people talking and more like scripted monologues. And even by a movie's standards, there are more than a few dramatic flourishes that are just too implausible to suspend your disbelief over.

Despite all that, Interstellar works for me.

I want to see uncharted worlds. I want to see the unfamiliar stars of deep space. And I want to see a black hole, modeled by Hollywood's finest in such detail that it's given fresh insights into what they really look like.

Interstellar's interpretation of science has proven divisive, but to be honest, I'm just impressed that they went there at all. Here's a mainstream Hollywood blockbuster trying to delve into wormholes, time dilation, and multiple dimensions. Yes, they may have messed up some of the details, but I feel even trying to tackle them is an achievement in itself (a sentiment shared by Neil deGrasse Tyson).

I love the film's message that humanity should strive for the stars. It took us 66 years to go from the first flight to the Moon; 45 years later, we haven't escaped Earth's orbit. Interstellar isn't even remotely subtle about this message. Nolan has spoken about how inspirational 2001: A Space Odyssey was and how he hopes to emulate it. It's hard to say whether that will happen given how familiar sci-fi is to today's audiences, but as a fan of space exploration I can only hope it works.

For all its flaws, there were enough times that Interstellar provoked wide-eyed wonder for me that make the film worth seeing.

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