Before I give vent to everything I hated, it is not without a few positive qualities:
1. There are two cool action sequences that are fun to watch -- one at the beginning and one on the moon. Neither of them really makes any sense or have anything to do with the movie, really, but they're passably cool.
2. The production design is good -- somebody paid attention to what spacecraft and space stations look like on the inside and they did a very good job making that part of the film look believable.
3. Tommy Lee Jones is great, because, hey Tommy Lee Jones.
Literally everything else sucks.
The message of this movie is "toxic masculinity is a threat to life on Earth". It is not really a science fiction movie. The science-fictional elements of this film could have been concocted by fifth graders. Strike that -- smart fifth graders would've come up with a better science fiction premise than exists in this film.
The movie telegraphs exactly what it's about and what's going to happen in the first 60 (?) seconds. You can get up and leave at that point. Seriously.
The third act is slow, and long, and stupid. The filmmaker is transparently trying to give homage to Kubrick and 2001. Kubrick can get away with slow and long because he's STANLEY F*KCING KUBRICK. This guy is not.
Do not take your spouse to see this movie unless they love Brad Pitt. You will just accrue pointless movie debt and have to endure who knows what next time your spouse picks the movie.
It's safe to say that "Ad Astra" is probably not the science fiction film you think it is. Anyone expecting "Independence Day" or some such holiday blockbuster might be disappointed, but any fan of art expressed through cinema, won’t be.
The movie stars Brad Pitt as Major Roy McBride: super cool under pressure, the pride of Space Command and son of legendary astronaut H. Clifford McBride, played by Tommy Lee Jones.
Clifford McBride was the first human to reach both Jupiter and Saturn and a veteran of several deep space missions, which made him the perfect candidate to lead the Lima Project — a deep, deep space mission that would put a team in orbit around Neptune, beyond the influence of the Sun's radiation, to scan the universe for extraterrestrial intelligence.
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