The Midnight Sky review George Clooney Directs A Pretty But Shallow Sci-Fi Drama.
Famous actor George Clooney, who made his directorial debut with Confessions of a Dangerous Mind (2002), this time brings together a dystopian story stuck between the world and outer space. Based on Lily Brooks-Dalton‘s novel Good Morning, Midnight, the film tells of a scientist’s effort to reach astronauts on their way back to earth after a catastrophe in 2049 and warn them about the conditions in the world. Presenting visually strong scenes, the parts of the story of the film that do not fit in any way are thrown uncontrollably in space.
The world has come to an end due to an “event” that has not been fully explained in the story set in 2049 by Mark L. Smith (The Revenant). On the other hand, Augustine Lofthouse (George Clooney), who discovered the existence of a planet called K-23, which is in habitable conditions outside of Earth, does his best to explain the unfavorable conditions on Earth and save them from this disaster. While other people leave the observatories they set up in Antarctica to spend their last days with their families in their homes before facing death, Augustine is the only one who has devoted her life to this research, not leaving the observatories. So, the character who is also struggling with a deadly disease cannot get support from anyone while trying to reach astronauts returning from interplanetary travel. Until he realized that he was not actually alone in the observatory where he was.
The Midnight Sky: Between Antarctica and Outer Space
The Midnight Sky Review – Humanity is facing a devastating disaster, most likely caused by climate, and life on Earth comes to an end. The film, which begins its narrative exactly at this point, offers its audience a complete dystopia. In doing so, he applies the mathematics of the usual dystopian stories in reverse. The Midnight Sky focuses on sacrificing the world and returning them to their newly discovered planet, rather than saving astronauts by returning them to Earth after their journey into space. At the same time, it aims to increase its dramatic effect by putting a father-daughter story at the center of its narrative. The most important feature of the film, which features traces from productions such as Gravity, The Revenant, Interstellar, Ad Astra and The Martian, is Martin Ruhe’s cinematography and the quality of the visual effects used. The scenes that take place in the middle of nowhere and in very difficult conditions, especially in Antarctica, create impressive moments and increase the effect of the story. The strongest moments of the movie are the stressful moments of the main character, played by George Clooney with a successful performance, under the harsh conditions of Antarctica and a moment of difficulty in the space we have watched before. For this reason, the scenes set in Antarctica and George Clooney’s connection with the character Iris (Caoilinn Springall) are of great importance for the story of the film. Because the film actually contains a story of regret with heavy emotional burden due to Augustine giving up her own life in order to realize this project and a love bond that survives despite everything. The story, which comes to life only at such moments, unfortunately cannot keep its pace always at the same momentum and cannot balance its narrative between space and the world. The story begins to build on its emotional impact on the audience from the moment she enters the life of Iris Augustine at a young age and begins to give her the strength to endure in this difficult struggle.
The Midnight Sky Review – Iris connects Augustine to life, struggling with a disease that is said to be deadly, thought to be cancer, and supports her in achieving her goal of reaching the returning crew from planet K-23. Perhaps that is why the scenes depicting the struggles of these two characters are the strongest feature of the film. The connection established between the characters in Antarctica cannot be achieved within the spacecraft Aether, as the characters have never been well introduced, and the most crucial part of the narrative remains in the background. The story, which follows its course with predictable steps, cannot keep the balance between the two narratives, as it shapes even the most exciting moment in space by repeating the stereotypical moves we have seen many times in different examples of the genre. The deficiencies in the structure that consistently present the important points of the story as a puzzle are not limited to this. Significant stresses that suppress the story, such as Augustine’s unnamed illness, the great and unnamed catastrophe that befell the world, how the character managed to survive while dealing with the difficulties that befall him despite the gravity of his illness, or the mystery of how Iris stayed in the observatory, its most important opposite corner, is cursory to the audience. It is presented quickly with narratives. When some moments from the third vein of the story, Augustine’s past, are randomly placed between the scenes and used to explain some of these problems that are quickly raised, hollow solutions are produced to the six never-ending problems that sometimes go beyond logic. The narrative of the film, which leaves some of the story points open, while trying too hard to solve some of them, does not give enough space even to Felicity Jones‘ character, and at the end of the day, only George Clooney’s character shines and remains under the influence of one person. As such, the high-tone music of Alexandre Desplat is also too magnificent for the story, which keeps the space of movement narrow in every sense.
The Midnight Sky, which presents visually remarkable scenes, approaches its story from an interesting angle, but cannot eliminate the shortcomings in the story structure. With only a few moments of excitement, the film needs to be given enough time to all its characters to tell an impressive story to the intended extent, to thoroughly define the basis of its narrative, unexpected dangers, better hidden inverted corners and a wider range of motion.