After seeing Interstellar, which was pretty damn good until it’s final act, I had high hopes that that The Martian would be more consistent. Thankfully, it is.

The Martian is the story of Mark Watney, an astronaut who’s left behind on Mars after an accident seemingly kills him. Watney must now figure out a way to survive on Mars for four years until the next group of astronauts arrives.

The Good

  • An outstanding performance from Matt Damon as Mark Watney
  • Great performances from many of the other major and minor supporting characters
  • This movie was surprisingly funny (I guess if you’ve been left on Mars to die you can either laugh or cry, and Watney chose the former)
  • Really ramps the tension up when it needs to and really had me holding my breath or going “Ouch” out loud at times
  • Interesting ensemble of characters (even if some of them are a bit clichéd)
  • Throws you in on the deep end
  • It just looks fantastic
  • Great special effects
  • So much science!

The OK

  • Ending was good but a bit predictable
  • I almost forgot about the Mars plot at one point near the end of the movie
  • Later on into the film it gets dangerously close to that point of having too many characters, but manages to walk that very fine line by keeping the plot tight

The Bad

  • Nada. Zip. Zero. Zilch.

Final Thoughts

I went into The Martian expecting something more along the lines of Interstellar. What I got was a bit lighter, but overall more consistent and entertaining. Add a great performance from Matt Damon, and you have a tense survival movie that is often really funny, while at the same time being surprisingly intelligent.

Overall, The Martian is a great film, regardless of whether you’re a sci-fi buff or not. Check it out before it goes off the big screen.