article Spring 2022

Written Across the Stars

Explore Christopher Nolan’s reimagined galaxy through the lens of time

Photo by: Benjamin Spong from the Fall 2021 Photo Contest
Around and Around Again

Released in 2014, Christopher Nolan’s movie Interstellar was nominated for various Academy and BAFTA awards for the categories of Best Score, Best Cinematography, and Best Visual Effects. Though falling short of achieving the esteemed Best Picture nomination at the Oscars, this film portrays a thrilling story, combining principles of Einstein’s theory of relativity with a father’s quest to ensure the survival of future generations away from a ravaged Earth. 

The story follows father and former NASA astronaut Cooper, who is portrayed by Matthew McConaughy. Given the food shortages, low oxygen levels, and harsh weather patterns on Earth, Cooper is tasked with finding an alternative planet for present and future inhabitants to migrate to from Earth. Under the guidance of Dr. Brand, the head of this mission, Cooper and his fellow crew members must find a feasible solution to transport Earth’s population to safety while also looking for evidence of a lost crew’s whereabouts after an earlier failed mission. Cooper and his crew, after initial reluctance, agree to this mission and travel through a wormhole to find habitable planets. Along their journey, they settle on a water planet that was studied by one of the deceased crew members of the previous mission. However, due to this planet’s proximity to a black hole, it experiences severe time dilation, and the crew must work quickly in order to escape the effects of time. Retrieving little from this planet, the crew must answer challenging questions to decide what other planets to investigate under the pressure of time. With each passing second in this faraway galaxy, the crew members risk returning to a world long forgotten due to different time constraints on Earth. In the height of their search, a secret is revealed which leaves the crew having to decide how they will proceed, including whether they will leave their families behind at home.

Photo by: Kaitlin Moore from the Fall 2021 Photo Contest
To The Stars-VLA

Though originally given a 72% rating on Rotten Tomatoes after its opening weekend,Interstellar has since regained the public’s attention due to its reemergence on several social media platforms and growing acclaim for its film score. Its interpretations of Einstein’s theory of relativity and time might not be entirely scientifically accurate, but its portrayal of modern physics is sure to fascinate even the most avid scientist with its stunning visuals. While exploring principles of time relation, the viewer is immersed in a universe filled with epic graphics, cinematography, and a touching story line where NASA pilot Cooper sees his life at home through a different lens of reality. Hans Zimmer’s acclaimed film score further enhances this immersive experience that transports moviegoers into Cooper’s NASA mission alongside his crew. Whether the viewer’s knowledge of Einstein’s principles extends to their high school physics class or to a PhD in the subject matter, Interstellar promises a rewarding experience for all moviegoers. Make sure to add Interstellar to your list of must-watch sci-fi films and enjoy this masterpiece for yourself.

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