Ad Astra

Sep 23, 19 Ad Astra



A paranoid thriller in space that follows Roy McBride (Brad Pitt) on a mission across an unforgiving solar system to uncover the truth about his missing father and his doomed expedition that now, 30 years later, threatens the universe.

Thanks to 20th Century Fox Australia



How much Brad Pitt acting do you really need to sell you on this movie? I’m gonna start with a compliment, before I dive into what I feel are my major flaws with this film. Brad, as expected, is excellent.

The visual aesthetic is incredible! This project simply looks beautiful; every few minutes there will be amazing wide-angle space shots, exquisite astral images and gorgeous planets. Even the directive choices are pretty clever – they add a few front-angle jump scenes,and first-person perspective shots, that gives you this really cool video-game vibe; Kinda like you’re playing a video game. I saw it in VMax at Event Cinemas, so I was spellbound the entire time.

The rest of this film is a real slog-fest. After a very enticing first act, this movie get sloooowww. By the 60 minute mark, you’ll feel the dip; 90 minutes in,and I was just waiting for it to end. That’s not entirely a bad thing – if slow films are your vibe, you won’t mind this. But for me, I just got a bit bored.

The plot also didn’t interest me. The key focus is a father-son relationship, which is fine, but not what I expected. The sub-plots in this story would’ve made for much stronger content. There’s a mission on the far side of the moon, where they’re ambushed by lunar space pirates (which lasts 2 minutes). There’s a rescue mission, stylised as horror, where experimental primates take over a space shuttle (this is about 10 minutes). There’s an entire mini-segment about humans living on mars that is literally 20 minutes. The rest of the story is just dedicated towards his father, which is a let down.

This eventually led to a very underwhelming, unsatisfying climax, which had me going: “Just end it. Say what you need to say, and finish it already. I don’t care anymore”. Honestly, towards the end, I didn’t even want to know what happens, because anything I found interesting was brushed off.

Its really not as horrible as I’m making it sound; its just underused and wasted potential. I, personally, would not recommend it if you’re expecting a bit of action and a draw to keep you entertained; but if you’re happy with the pretty pictures, Brad Pitt, and don’t mind a slower based film, I think you will enjoy it.

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