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Interstellar discussion thread
  • A thread to discuss Interstellar and Matt's role (including spoilers).
  • 29 comments or Leave a comment
    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: November 10th, 2014 06:41 am (UTC) (Link)


    From: (Anonymous) Date: November 10th, 2014 07:08 am (UTC) (Link)

    Screencrush article

    Thanks very much for creating this thread, Felicity!

    I won't see it until later today (so I haven't looked at the content), but here's an article:


    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: November 10th, 2014 09:29 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Iceland locations

    I was surprised there wasn't a scene inside the beautiful glacier which was one of the key Iceland locations (the green/blue interior). There only ended up being filming on top of the glaciers. Maybe it was cut, or they were only ever filming on the exterior.
    From: (Anonymous) Date: November 10th, 2014 10:28 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Matt's Role

    :) i actually got confused when i watched the film, i thought Matt was one of the robots, did sound like him, then realised obviously what his role actually was and he did great.

    And did anyone else jump when it blew up!!!! I certainly did.

    Just out of interest, i lie in the UK and the cinema i went to the sound was exceptionally loud, my hearing isnt great at the best of times but i found it too loud and there were some scences where you couldn't actually hear what was being said because of the background music - very annoying
    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: November 10th, 2014 11:59 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Matt's Role

    There's been a lot of discussion on Hollywood Elsewhere about the sound issues in the film, and it seems to depend on the cinema and type of format (cinema/IMAX etc). I found the sound very bad in parts and the music was too loud to hear the dialogue, but presumed it was intentional (although very annoying). And Matthew McC's accent was also hard to understand in parts.


    Lot of different opinions on twitter and in reviews as to whether Matt's role was good/bad/distracting/poorly written/badly filmed. I don't think the fight was very well done and the sequence in the ship was difficult to comprehend. Was it an asteroid that hit Matt? I thought he deliberately blew the ship up.

    Edited at 2014-11-10 11:59 pm (UTC)
    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: November 11th, 2014 02:05 am (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Matt's Role

    USA Today on the last hour:


    Vulture picks up on a few issues (including sound problems in the comments):


    Edited at 2014-11-11 02:18 am (UTC)
    From: (Anonymous) Date: November 12th, 2014 04:48 am (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Matt's Role

    The vulture piece is a mean spirited snobbish bash job and the USA Today article basically says, over and over again, "I just don't get it!"

    Let's just come right out and say that anybody who can't enjoy watching 2001 is NOT going to like Interstellar. "But where did the big black thing come from? Why did he leave the ship? How come he kept changing ages? Where did that room come from? Who made it? They never showed the creatures who made it, so how can I enjoy this?"

    The irony is that Interstellar is much more accessible than 2001. If that movie came out today it would get about 30% on rotten tomatoe, and shrieks from the moron section that the movie "doesn't know what it is."

    Sigh. I'm sorry, but some people are just dumb.
    From: (Anonymous) Date: November 12th, 2014 04:28 am (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Matt's Role

    The fight was meant to look ragged and desperate, not heroic. That was the point of filming the two characters fighting from a great distance. To emphasize their human frailty and the crazy humanness of this violence. It was after he succeeded in cracking Cooper's faceplate that Matt's performance really took off into the stratosphere. It was AMAZING. I have never seen a scene like that in a movie, ever.

    Do you mean when Mann stole the ship to try and maroon them? When Cooper was chasing him he said that the automatic system for docking had been turned off, and warned Mann not to try to dock with the "mothership" and said that if he tried to dock "nothing good will happen". Mann at that point had turned off his headset, so he couldn't hear most of these warnings, and when he did hear them he chose to ignore them. Out of desperation at that point, probably. So when he tried to open the airlock it blew open, killing him and severely damaging the ship.

    Matt's performances are so naturalistic that they are often undervalued in the short term. No worries, because they stand up fantastically to repeat viewing.
    From: (Anonymous) Date: November 12th, 2014 09:09 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Matt's Role

    I thought Tars sounded strikingly like Matt as well. I thought maybe they just altered his voice a bit.
    From: tsgpinkblack Date: November 11th, 2014 12:11 am (UTC) (Link)

    New Bourne Revealed

    Since the upcoming new Bourne film has revealed, after i looked up about the Bourne series the book and after i saw the one right after The Bourne Legacy, i think this one gonna be called, "The Bourne Betrayal" the film!
    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: November 11th, 2014 01:25 am (UTC) (Link)

    Re: New Bourne Revealed

    As none have kept the same storylines so far as the books it's hard to tell if they will keep the titles. I think Ludlam only wrote the first three, so they're out of his official titles.
    From: (Anonymous) Date: November 12th, 2014 02:28 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Re: New Bourne Revealed

    Eric Van Lustbader wrote Bourne Legacy, and they kept the name. The movies have departed so hugely from the books (inevitably, since the books were set in the seventies and they didn't want to make a period piece). But the titles are generic enough that they'll probably keep using them. it's tradition at this point.
    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: November 12th, 2014 01:50 am (UTC) (Link)

    Nolan board

    A discussion on the NolanFans board about Matt's character:

    From: (Anonymous) Date: November 12th, 2014 05:01 am (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Nolan board

    Really fascinating discussion over there about the character. And he is fascinating, repeatedly described as "the best of us". And unquestionably the villain of the piece. It's an interesting question. Was Dr. Mann "evil"? Had the isolation driven him insane? Or was he insane because he thought he had marooned himself for nothing? He said at one point that he couldn't face the fact that 'my planet is not the one." Was it broken vanity? Did he remain a good person acting out of fear? Did his assertions to Cooper that it was for the mission have any validity or was he rationalizing?

    Did he represent the inevitable outcome of fanaticism? Any means to an end?

    someone online said that his statement to Cooper about the face of your children being the last thing you see before you die meant that the whole ending on the spaceship around Saturn was what he saw in his mind at his death.

    At any rate, lots to think about!
    From: (Anonymous) Date: November 12th, 2014 01:55 am (UTC) (Link)

    Just saw it (finally!)

    Well, that was a very impressive cinematic achievement. Hubby babe really liked it too, which surprised me, since he's really not a sci-fi guy. As a matter of fact, the first words out of his mouth were, "That was hugely better than Gravity," and I agree. Gravity was just a roller coaster ride, albeit a very good one. Interstellar was hugely more ambitious (to my mind, successfully) on both intellectual and emotional levels.

    A number of shots were really gorgeous, and obviously created as an homage to 2001.

    I took Matt's character to be the random human element that can never be truly accounted for in any human plan. I thought he was great. His character was so conflicted and a testament to the inevitable corruption of doing the right thing for the wrong reasons. His dialogue as Cooper was dying (he thought) was so amazing! But, Matt, dude, before you slide into The Martian spacesuit, you have got to lose a little weight! Lol, he kinda looked like an astro-piñata.

    There was not a significant problem with the sound in my theater, I got all the lines, although occasionally I had to listen closely. McCounaughey has a sort of low drawl which might be difficult to pick up for some. It distracted me a bit in the beginning because it reminded me so much of his car commercial, which is playing on heavy rotation here. "I didn't like this spaceship because it was cool, I just liked it." Ha, ha.

    So finally, a Nolan movie I actually really like. I'm sure it couldn't have anything to do with the fact that Matt was in it! Lol, now I can go back and look at some reviews.

    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: November 12th, 2014 02:34 am (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Just saw it (finally!)

    Thanks Paula. I thought he deliberately looked bad and overweight for the sake of the character, and that it was done through makeup. Maybe not. The Nolan board discussion above is an interesting one with both sides of the argument about his character and value to the overall story. I don't really remember the monologue that was praised.

    Gravity lost a lot of impact to me with the dream sequence, and the Matt part here was just another diversion which to me formed part of the overall story. And I can never go past thinking now that India's recent mission to Mars cost far less than Gravity.
    From: (Anonymous) Date: November 12th, 2014 09:17 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Just saw it (finally!)

    Yeah, You are probably right about him looking a bit older and unhealthy by means of make-up. But the chubby part seemed odd for a guy who's been stranded on a space station with limited resources for years, even if he spent many of those years sleeping.

    Was he sent alone to the station except for the robot? I'm a bit confused about that.
    From: (Anonymous) Date: November 12th, 2014 09:38 pm (UTC) (Link)
    Lots of funny Twitter comments today about the European Space Agency's probe finding Dr Mann on the comet.

    From: (Anonymous) Date: November 13th, 2014 06:14 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Nolan on keeping the character secret

    Interesting comments from Nolan on why he cast Matt, his performance, and keeping the character a secret, from the Philipine Inquirer.

    Why did you keep Matt Damon’s casting a secret?

    Chris Nolan (C): I imagined Doctor Mann a bit like from Joseph Conrad’s “Heart of Darkness.” You have Kurtz, this character that you hear about. Everybody says, “Oh, he’s great. Maybe you’ll get to meet him.” I really love the idea for an audience to go, when they see him, “Oh, it’s Matt Damon. It’s going to be okay.”

    Matt very graciously agreed to do it. He didn’t have to shoot for long. So we didn’t want to market the film using him because he’s not in it very much. We didn’t want to mislead people. But Matt is a very important part of the movie. It’s fun to watch with an audience who doesn’t know because they haven’t heard about it.

    Matt has the most amazing ability to project integrity and warmth. So he turns up in the film and he’s got a plan and it’s all going to be okay. For me, to realize that he’s a frail human being and subject to cowardice and all the terrible weaknesses that we all have… he loved that challenge. I loved what he did with it.

    Emma Thomas (E): If people get to watch the film twice, it’s so great watching Matt when you know what’s really going on.

    C: When people see Matt’s face, they are like, oh, okay. It’s the lift that the movie needs at that point. Structurally, you have a lot of talk in the 20 minutes before. There’s a lot of negativity, a lot bad things happening. The film is very much going to a dark place at that point. So getting that lift in that way with a great actor and movie star coming on screen, is a good thing.

    Read more: http://entertainment.inquirer.net/156463/chris-nolan-explains-why-he-kept-actors-casting-a-secret#ixzz3IyPQs5dk
    Follow us: @inquirerdotnet on Twitter | inquirerdotnet on Facebook

    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: November 14th, 2014 01:22 am (UTC) (Link)

    Sound issues

    A note to cinema-goers about the sound in the film at a Rochester cinema.

    From: (Anonymous) Date: November 15th, 2014 01:50 am (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Sound issues

    When the movie chain headquarters heard about this, they quickly had the sign taken down. This was in THR.

    The signs were put up at Cinemark Tinseltown without the knowledge of Cinemark headquarters. A Cinemark corporate spokesman told The Hollywood Reporter that there were no issues with the film itself, and that the location instead experienced technical issues due to a hard-drive problem that have since been resolved. The signs were taken down earlier on Thursday.

    - See more at: http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/movie-theater-blames-christopher-nolan-748866?mobile_redirect=false#sthash.9FSuwLBk.dpuf
    4mattdamon From: 4mattdamon Date: November 15th, 2014 11:46 am (UTC) (Link)

    Finally saw it.

    Well I have some catching up to do on his thread since I finally saw the film tonight.
    My initial reaction to the movie itself was speechless and amazing. Very heady film, with a lot of depth about time, space, love, our humanity. I'm not a big scifi fan normally, but a movie like this I really do enjoy. (I did not like Gravity)

    I thought there were some beautiful images and almost felt like at times the film rushed past them. I wish at times we could have lingered looking at the galaxies, or as you said Felicity seeing inside the glacier and so forth.

    At first sight of Matt I said to myself there he is! Matt can do no wrong. And then he went into the baby cry LOL LOL and I just posted on the other thread that his crying on screen was one things that originally drew me to him as an actor being able be that vulnerable on screen.
    I initially liked his character a lot and thought that his story was compelling and that he was going to share his discoveries with them and all would go well. When it took a turn and he pushed McCanaughey and then head butted him I was confused. Why oh why would Dr. Mann be so cruel? I have to read up on the Nolan board the discussion, but I was a bit disappointed he ended being a villain (cause I wanted him to help out and work with the team) but without much understanding of why he was so desperate and why he couldn't just help them and carry out the mission along with them. And I agree with Felicity that the fight was a bit awkward and what was happening in his spacecraft a bit hard to comprehend.

    I too jumped in my seat when Matt's spacecraft blew up, and I too struggled to hear what people were saying from the beginning of the movie. The volume seemed low and I was thinking "speak up". I also noticed as you pointed out Felicity that the music and sound affects sometimes washed out the dialogue. I'm totally willing to re-watch the movie and maybe see it with subtitles sometime.
    I also at one point thought holy sh*t, Tar's voice is Matt Damon's slightly altered, but I kept listening and realized that it wasn't.

    As for Matt's physical appearance, this was shot in 2013 before or just after the Elysium premiere. It was before he started really trimming down. I met him in January '14 at the Tonight Show and he looked slim and fit, and since then, he's continued to slim down and get more fit. He looked GREAT when I saw him 2 weeks ago at Come To Papa. He often wears clothes a size too big. And I think since he's lost weight he's wearing stuff oversized. He clearly yo yos and he's confessed he LOVES TO EAT. I didn't think he looked awful a bit ragged. Paula an astro-pinata HAHAHA


    Edited at 2014-11-15 12:47 pm (UTC)
    From: (Anonymous) Date: November 15th, 2014 06:32 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Finally saw it.

    Glad you saw it, Gregory, thanks for posting your thoughts.

    I'm always fascinated by smart sci-fi and its capacity to look at the world's current problems. I respect that Interstellar visually represents the dangers the planet is facing, with dust storms and crop failure. Certainly that has led to attacks against it, because there are lots of powerful people who have a vested interest in the status quo and don't want climate warnings even discussed, much less visually represented in a popular movie. Look how those same people attacked Promised Land.

    I also respect that it goes into metaphysical/theological territory. So few movies actually address the human condition. Matt has made a number of movies recently that address similar issues, like The Adjustment Bureau (free will, importance of love), and Hereafter (life after death). So few movies go into this territory, that it's remarkable that Matt has now made three. Of course, we can't know for sure, but I can't help but wonder if Kent's diagnosis has been a spur to Matt's interest in these projects.
    4mattdamon From: 4mattdamon Date: November 16th, 2014 06:31 am (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Finally saw it.

    My posts are always so long. I apologize. I want to see Interstellar again cause there was so much happening. Some great convo about Matt's character. He played villain in The Departed, and of course he was an a** in House of Lies. I'm still trying to wrap my head around was he a coward or not, cause he wanted to go to the other planet to populate and had to kill McC to possibly be able to do so. I just didn't like his character's betrayal. I'm glad his performance is causing positive buzz.

    Edited at 2014-11-16 06:32 am (UTC)
    From: (Anonymous) Date: November 17th, 2014 03:07 am (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Finally saw it.

    Lol, I always enjoy your posts. You're the only person on this site who's anywhere near as long-winded as I am! :-)
    I think he was trying to pass his goal off as noble, but he was just rationalizing. He was terrified of dying alone on a barren rock in a failed expedition. Maybe his ego couldn't handle it, maybe the isolation had caused him to lose his reason. I thought it was a great performance.

    Here's a tweet that echoes how I feel. Ha.


    From: (Anonymous) Date: November 18th, 2014 02:44 am (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Finally saw it.

    From: (Anonymous) Date: November 15th, 2014 11:05 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Comments from io9

    Interesting - and I think quite convincing - argument form io9 that Interstellar is a direct answer to 2001.

    The whole article is worth a read but here are the comments about Dr. Mann:

    The warning bells go off quick and often with Mann (that name, it kills me), and it's a stroke of brilliant casting. In Odyssey, part of the jarring juxtaposition was the fact that Hal, for all his calculating evil, seemed in the end more human than the actual humans. Hal dies repeating, over and over as he is being dismantled, "I can feel it, Dave. I can feel it." His voice is calm, but he might as well be screaming. He dies singing, a slow slurry of technology ultimately failing mankind.

    But this is Interstellar, and evil comes from us. Matt Damon — who could have been better? The trustworthy face, the disarming demeanor, the pity we naturally feel for someone left alone so long without hope, all add up to more misdirection that never quite takes. Because, you see, Dr. Mann had a monolithic robot too, and it's been dismantled for unconvincing reasons. In that moment, I saw echoes of Hal dispatching the first astronaut in total silence, and I said it under my breath: "He's going to try to kill Cooper."

    Logically, Mann has to. He is Hal in reverse — a charming human being who has gone cold, and who, instead of caring about the larger mission, really only cares about his own self-preservation. He takes Cooper for a walk, monologuing about love and connection and the longing for survival, all tying back to Cooper's desire to see his children again, and you're waiting, any minute, for him to sigh, and say "I'm afraid I can't let you do that, Cooper."

    From: (Anonymous) Date: November 19th, 2014 08:48 am (UTC) (Link)

    Interstellar Comic


    I like the fact that they did a few comic pages to enhance the story of Dr. Mann. However, I don't think it reaveled enough about his backstory other than the fact that he didn't get along with his robot Kipp which was onto him regarding lying about data. Am I missing something? I did like reading some of the high praise of Damon people left in the comments section, and I noticed the cartoon has Damon's nose.
    From: (Anonymous) Date: November 19th, 2014 12:30 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Nolan talks about Mann

    Fairly extensive comments from Nolan about the character of Dr Mann in the Daily Beast:

    As far as Mann’s motivations are concerned, Nolan views it as very cut-and-dry.

    “It’s very straightforward: selfishness, and cowardice,” he says. “It’s very human, and I love what Matt did with that; he found the reality of it. It’s the kind of sequence where you loathe the guy because he’s doing something that you feel you might wind up doing in a similar situation. It’s very logical, but the rationalization of it is extraordinary—the way he was able to rationalize his own cowardice into a positive thing. Loneliness and desperation will make us do crazy things.”

    After they wake Mann from his slumber, he leads Cooper off on walk around the icy, seemingly uninhabitable planet to prove its viability. Then, he turns on Cooper and attacks him. A space fistfight ensues, and Mann head-butts Cooper’s helmet visor until it cracks, and leaves him to die. According to Nolan, the mutiny sequence was largely inspired by the one in The Treasure of the Sierra Madre in which Fred C. Dobbs (Humphrey Bogart) is consumed by greed over the group’s treasure and loses his mind.

    There are more comments at The Beast

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