Running time: 97 mins (approx)
Certification (UK): 15
Watched at the cinema Saturday 25th July 2009.
***WARNING! ***PLEASE NOTE: POSSIBLE SPOILERS IN THIS REVIEW.
Because this film has had a limited release, I made a round trip of 36 miles to see it. The question is, was it worth it? The answer is a resounding Yes! Although it has quite a slow pace, I could see people in the cinema looking at their watches after just 20 minutes, I found it quite enthralling. As the film goes on the tension slowly rises and you really feel for the main character Sam.
Sam Bell is the sole custodian of a mining operation on the moon that extracts the precious resource Helium 3 from moon rock. This is done with several giant ‘harvesters’ that traverse the lunar surface, processing the rock as they go. The Helium 3 is then sent back to Earth to be used as a clean fuel. Sam is nearing the end of a three year contract running the facility, assisted by the computer GERTY. Whilst out servicing one of the harvesters, Sam is involved in an accident. He wakes up back at the base in the infirmary with no recollection of how he got there. He eventually convinces GERTY to let him outside and he immediately goes to the site of the accident where he finds an injured person who looks exactly like him. I will not say any more about the plot, but needless to say, from here on in it had me gripped.
A truly excellent performance by Sam Rockwell as Sam Bell, ably assisted by Kevin Spacey as the voice of GERTY. The computer GERTY had a quirky ‘smiley face’ on its display that changed depending on the mood which I found an interesting device. Very well directed by Duncan Jones, who also wrote the original story. I found the film slightly reminiscent of Silent Running (1972), with hints of 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968), but I won’t draw comparisons. Over all, an enthralling drama set on the moon with a great performance by Sam Rockwell.
My score: 9/10