Review: Moon

Updated: Mar 30




Director: Duncan Jones

Writer: Duncan Jones (story), Nathan Parker, Mark Bowden

Genre : Drama, Sci-Fi, Fantasy

Cast: Sam Rockwell, Kevin Spacey and Dominique McElligott

Release year: 2009

Runtime : 97 min


With a degree in philosophy and a background in effects, this was Duncan Jones’ directorial debut. It’s also interesting that his father is David Bowie who had a hit single ‘Space Oddity’ about an astronaut who is lost in space. In this light, Moon (2019) seems almost inevitable. The whole film was shot in 33 days and has only two major characters. Nonetheless, it is made with such theatricality it manages to be epic.


The company Lunar Industries is entrusted with solving the earth’s energy crisis by setting up a helium-3 mining base on the dark side of the moon. Astronaut, Sam Bell (Sam Rockwell) is the only employee and resident. After nearly three years on the lunar surface, he is extremely homesick. Without any real-time communication with human beings due to a satellite jam, his only companions are his intelligent computer GERTY (Kevin Spacey [voice]) and his plants.


While on a mining mission just two weeks before his contract is completed, he gets into an accident with a mechanical harvester and is seriously injured. He wakes up in the infirmary, nursed by GERTY, and begins having some doubts about his reality. He goes on an unofficial expedition and makes an unexpected discovery at the scene of the accident.


The film's epic feel has a lot to do with the ambitious references including a shot of the earth identical to a photograph shot by the Apollo 17 crew; references to Stanley Kubrick’s 1968 classic 2001: A Space Odyssey and its plot similar to Algis Budrys' mesmeric book Rogue Moon (1960).


Visually stunning, eccentric, and sophisticated, this film deconstructs today’s tacky Star Wars/Trek-esque sci-fi tradition. Like the classic science fiction masterpieces of the 60s and 70s, the ghostly histrionics of Moon engage the concepts of inner and outer space, making it an irrefutable modern classic.



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