Monday, 29 October 2012

Moon (2009) Review

It's that time again! Time for another weekly movie review! This week's film is a little different as it's not currently in theaters like Looper was last week and it's an indie film to boot. 

This week, I watched Moon (2009) directed by first time director Duncan Jones, son of legendary rocker David Bowie, and starring Sam Rockwell. 

Sam Rockwell plays Sam Bell, a man working on the moon for a large corporation gathering Helium-3, a new clean burning fuel that 70% of the world relies on for energy. He's coming to the end of a 3-year contract where he has worked in total isolation on a base on the far side of the moon. His only real-time interaction is with a very Hal-9000 like computer called GERTY, voiced by Kevin Spacey. As Sam nears the end of his contract, he starts having hallucinations and fears he might be losing his mind. And that's all I want to say about the plot!

When I say the film stars Sam Rockwell, I mean it. Other than Kevin Spacey providing a mostly emotionless voice for the computer, Sam Rockwell is the only actor in this movie. There are clips of his wife and daughter as well as some suits from the corporation running the base from earth, but these clips are few and far between. I'm not sure there's a single scene in this movie that does not have Sam Rockwell in it. Which is good since it was amazing to watch one of Hollywood's most under-appreciated actors really step up and deliver. Rockwell is absolutely fantastic in this film. I'm amazed he wasn't nominated for an Oscar. Yes, he's that good in this. Even if you're not a fan of the concept, watch this movie just to see how great an actor he is.

The look and feel of Moon is fairly unique, especially when compared to today's big budget, CGI heavy films. All the effects are done practically, meaning miniatures and models and such. It gives the film a much more tangible feel to it as everything moves the way it should. It's all done quite cleverly, especially when you realize this film was shot for around $5 million. I also wanted to mention the soundtrack for Moon. Without going off on a rant, most movies these days seem to spend very little time on the soundtrack. Largely gone are the days when the movie's soundtrack was so well done and so in sync with the material being presented, it almost became a character in the movie itself (Jaws, Star Wars, etc). Clint Mansell does the soundtrack for Moon and I have to say he does an incredible job with it. The music is exactly right for this type of movie with this kind of setting.

If you're looking for a solid piece of film making with a great soundtrack and an absolutely fantastic, break-through acting performance, find a way to watch this movie. You won't be disappointed.

4.5 out of 5 stars
Moon (2009)
Reviewed by The Bitter Critic on Oct 29 2012
Rating: 4.5

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