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Trivia / Goofs
Summary / Analysis
Times of India
Earth's environment is crippled in the not-too-distant future. A dwindling food supply due to crop pestilence means that mankind will soon be doomed. It is up to a group of intrepid astronauts to navigate galaxies via a wormhole near the rings of Saturn, to locate a new home for humanity.
Cooper (McConaughey) is a former pilot who dreams of soaring in the skies again. Unfortunately, Cooper needs to have his feet firmly on terra firma to take care of farm and family. His father-in-law (Lithgow) repeatedly reminds him about that. Cooper's daughter Murph (Foy) however is as bright a spark - and as passionate about what she believes in - as her father is. Murph is also imaginative; she attributes randomly-moving objects and books in her room to poltergeist activity. But her dad reminds her that "there are no ghosts".
The first of many direct homages to Kubrick's 2001: A Space Odyssey is the jump-cut from where he drives away from home, face filling the frame in the car, to the same face now clad in space helmet and taking off in a rocket set for interstellar overdrive in space. It was Cooper's old boss Dr Brand (Caine) who convinced him (admittedly, without much effort) to make the perilous-but-promising journey navigating singularities and stars along with scientists Doyle (Bentley), Romilly (Gyasi), Brand's charismatic daughter Amelia (Hathaway) and a helpful robot named TARS (Irwin) on their journey millions of light years from home and hearth.
Apart from the planned objectives, they have no idea what to expect. And it is this process of discovery that is magnificent, complex and a true testament to Nolan's visionary genius. McConaughey is brilliant but Hathaway is a little unconvincing. The terminologies and mathematical formulae might confound some, but you will nonetheless be dazzled. Subtexts abound: the individual vs. the good of mankind, love's overarching influence over time and space and so on.
Hans Zimmer's score swells like the tides throughout; ebbing, flowing and speaking a separate sonic language. This intergalactic extravaganza is clearly in a class by itself.
It is reported that until post production of the film, actor Matthew McConaughey had not revealed the plot of the film even to his wife.
Director Christopher Nolan was doubtful that how would they give a scientifically accurate depiction of a black hole to audience. However, after filming the movie he found the finished effect to be explainable provided that he maintained steady camera perspectives.
Christopher Nolan reportedly decided to cast Matthew McConaughey after seeing his performance in Mud (2012).
Bollywood actor Irrfan Khan was reportedly considered for a role. However, he declined due to schedule conflicts with The Lunchbox (2013) and D-Day (2013).
The archive footage interviews were filmed for the production and altered later to look old.
Christopher Nolan had instructed composer Hans Zimmer to come up with a unique score.
Giant dust clouds for the film were created on the sets. Large fans were used to blow cellulose-based synthetic dust.
Christopher Nolan had invited former astronaut Marsha Ivins on the set to get an inspiration of real space travel.
Steven Speilberg was supposed to direct the film in 2006. However he opted out of the film for some other project.
Physicist Kip Thorne was asked to make a cameo in the film and was asked to play himself. Apparently his works has inspired this film.
The debris which is discarded by the damaged rotating station could not have lingered around the area. Any debris should have departed from the craft in a straight line away from the center of rotation.
The older Murphy has a distinct chin cleft but the younger Murphy does not have it.
Before Cooper gives Murphy the watch, the time shows 9:02. However, when they compare it later, the time reads 8:22.
Murphy pushes the gear shifter forwards instead of pulling back where 2nd gear is found in that particular vehicle.
After docking to the damaged Endurance, the ship's engines are fired for the escape maneuver. The ship's engine axis is well away from the center of mass, yet the station doesn't spin.
Brand is so close to the event horizon while doing the gravitational slingshot that her subsequent escape would have had her travelling such a high percentage of the speed of light that landing on another planet would have been rather hard since she'd first have to shed all of that velocity.
The damaged craft spinning around its central axis would cause the docking hatch to rotate and to move in circles, eventually making the docking, as seen in the movie, impossible.
Coops' spiral pocket notebook keeps changing in every scene. While the spirals come loose in a few scenes, the notebook is in quite a good shape in others.
Cooper draws a schematic on the drawing board to depict a landing on a planet close to the black hole. Two scenes later, the drawing is different from the one first shown.
In the docking sequence after leaving Dr.Mann's planet, Case said that rotation ratio of Endurance is 67-68 rpm but judging by the actual screen it is way slower than this and around 10-15 rpm.
Cooper and family drive through a dust storm early in the movie. When they reach their home and park before rushing inside, the dust-laden wind seems to be blowing from the left side. Later, the dust patterns seems to have shifted to the other side of the car.
Cooper says gravity on Miller's planet is 130% more than Earth. Therefore, a human would weigh more and have difficulty moving around weighing more than double their body weight in such an environment as the crew's bodies were accustomed to Earth's gravity.
An hour on Miller (the water planet) equals 7 years of Earth time. Thus, Doyle, Cooper and Romilly say they cannot spend more than the bare minimum time on Miller. But they end up spending much more time there due to the tidal wave accident. This costs them 23 years in Earth time as the Endurance is still on Earth time. But how did the Endurance have enough power/fuel for 23 years? Especially since after they leave Miller, the Endurance only has enough fuel to go to one more planet.
When Mann (Damon) tries to dock with the Endurance and fails, the explosion would have completely de-stabilised the orbiting space station's rotation. It would then be wobbling and spinning in a haywire manner. Yet, the craft is still shown as spinning uniformly like a bicycle wheel. When Mann tries to dock with the space station, he botches it up, is killed and his craft is destroyed. The debris from the explosion (given that they are relatively small pieces) in space should have been sucked into the enormous Gargantua's gravity field which is nearby, instead of just floating around.
Decoding massively complex mathematical formulae (the kind of which took Dr Brand most of his life) and sending that via Morse Code to Murph via the moving seconds hand of a watch would be an enormous task where even one error could mean the whole thing not working. Therefore, Cooper must have spent an awful lot of time inside that black hole. If that kind of data was even one gigabyte at least, it has been calculated that it would take millions of movements of the watch's seconds hand to convey that information. That too, with zero margin for error. A simple idea of this complexity - to convey a single 'open bracket' in Morse, the word 'o-p-e-n-space-b-r-a-c-k-e-t-s-p-a-c-e' would have to be spelt out with each alphabet involving a series of dots and dashes.
How does Cooper leave the black hole without any assistance? If the 'aliens' are future humans, who left him floating in Saturn's orbit? And if he has been floating near Saturn for a long time before being rescued, his oxygen stores seem to never deplete.
he blight that is killing Earth is said to breathe nitrogen. If nitrogen is then depleted and there is too much oxygen in the Earth's atmosphere in the future, humanity would certainly perish, but by a medical condition known as Oxygen Toxicity and not just suffocation as explained in the film.
Common reading regarding black holes will inform you that as matter is pulled into it, it is torn apart to its very strands of atoms. Yet, Cooper goes into it intact while his craft is destroyed.
Black holes absorb everything — light included — as nothing can escape them. They also distort sound. Therefore, Cooper's voice and transmissions would be distorted as time dilation would occur when he approaches the Event Horizon of the black hole.
Click here for the movie review of Interstellar
Read further only if you've seen the movie Interstellar since the article below reveals the plot of the movie
This article includes the following sections: (Click on any topic to go directly to it)
- Interstellar's plot
- Interstellar FAQ
- Twitterati reactions on Interstellar
'Plan A' and 'Plan B' Theoretical physics is embedded deep into the fabric of Interstellar, such as the depiction of black holes, wormholes and higher dimensions. Nothing - not even light - can escape a black hole and black holes can bend light. Wormholes in space act as a 'gateway' or shortcut for travelling mindboggling distances such as intergalactic travel - the kind of travel depicted in this film. When Cooper and Murph stumble on a secret facility that is a considerable distance away from their home (after decoding mysterious directional 'signals' that Murph receives in her room), they learn that it is actually a NASA construction site for a massive space vehicle that is being designed to transport humans to a planet that can support life. NASA scientist Professor Brand, who is in charge of this project, later tells Cooper that a wormhole was discovered near Saturn and there were previous missions (known as the Lazarus Missions) to other planets in a different galaxy in search of a hospitable planet. The wormhole allowed such voyages to be possible. Three planets (named Miller, Edmunds and Mann after the scientists who travelled to the planets and didn't return) were discovered where conditions were hospitable. This information was relayed back to Earth via simple homing beacon signals. Cooper, Amelia, Romilly, Doyle and two assistive robots (CASE and TARS) set out on their mission with a 'Plan A' and a 'Plan B'.
Plan A Travelling in their spaceship Endurance, Cooper and company will visit the three planets one by one, ascertain which out of the three is ideal for human life and relay this information back to Brand. Back on Earth in the meantime, Brand will continue to work on an equation that he calls his 'life's work' which when solved, will enable a new understanding of the laws of physics. With this equation forming the backbone of the science behind this journey, the giant space vehicle will then mass transport Earth's surviving population into the new planet that Cooper and team have confirmed in another galaxy, via the wormhole.
Plan B Because of relativity and differences in time spans (a short span of time on a planet far away would be equivalent to years in Earth-time or even vice versa), the Endurance mission might take too long. They might, for example, run out of fuel and/or supplies. Brand's calculations regarding the above-mentioned equation might also turn out to be incorrect. So if all else fails, Brand proposes a 'population bomb'. The crew will stay on whatever planet they have deemed hospitable. Onboard the Endurance spaceship are canisters of cryogenically-preserved fertilized human embryos. These will then be harvested on the new planet. And going forward, successive generations will be raised.
However, there is no 'Plan A' Brand knew that his calculations would not help after he solved his equation years before. It was a lie. Brand knew that only 'Plan B' would be possible. Close to the end of his life on Earth, Brand reveals to the now grown-up Murph that it was the only way to get Earth's leaders to rally together, use whatever resources were still available and work for the cause of supporting 'Plan B'. Cooper however decides on a new course of action. Amelia and he (the only survivors of the mission) have to choose between Edmunds and Mann's planets as they only have enough fuel for one last trip. Cooper feels 'Plan A' is still possible, with some modifications. He first sends TARS into a nearby massive black hole dubbed Gargantua to transmit data back from the singularity. And to save fuel, he plans to use a 'slingshot' effect from Gargantua's event horizon to propel them towards Edmunds. Unexpectedly, Cooper also saves Amelia, jettisons from the main spaceship and falls into the black hole. Once inside, Cooper enters the 'Tesseract' - a five-dimensional space where time, space, gravity and so on interacts with the three-dimensional world. He is able to look into the past and give signals to his daughter.
Murph's 'ghosts' and extraterrestrial beings explained The beings referred to as 'They' are none other than human beings from the future, who have learned how to manipulate time and space. In this case, Cooper. The 'ghost' in Murph's room is Cooper himself, communicating into the past by manipulating gravity, using something as simple as Morse Code. And Murph records the data that Cooper gives her, to solve the equation that will ultimately make 'Plan A' possible. Also, the wormhole was created by humans in the future and not aliens. This is hinted at early in the movie when Cooper assures his daughter that "there are no ghosts".
Why is Earth devastated? Earth is affected by blight, which is basically a disease that destroys crops on a massive scale. One by one, Earth's crops are dying and there will soon be no food source left for the world's people. Also, the oxygen levels are fast depleting which means people are faced with certain death in a generation's time.
What is Murphy's Law? Murph is initially not too kicked when she learns that her name is a short form for Murphy's Law. It states that 'Anything that can go wrong will go wrong.' But Cooper tries to cheer her up a bit, giving her a more optimistic interpretation, which is "anything that can happen, will happen."
What are wormholes? They are like short cuts in space. Because distances are enormous in space, spanning lifetimes, wormholes are like tunnels that connect places that space ships can go into. So you get from 'A' to 'B' in maybe, a few hours instead of say, 45 years. The downside is that these convenient shortcuts are a wee bit hard to find.
What is the Fifth Dimension? The world that we know is in four dimensions. Five dimensions in the movie shows the use of gravity and time to move physical objects. That's basically how Cooper can reach out to his daughter in the past - by moving books and the hands of a wristwatch.
Why did Mann want to kill Cooper and the rest of the crew? Mann's planet is not fit for habitation. But he conceals this from Amelia, Cooper and Romilly. He intends to take the embryos and head to Edmunds, leaving the rest behind for the dead. Also, the fact that Mann has also quite clearly gone a little nuts, probably due to the isolation.
Why did the base on Mann's planet explode? Mann had his own assistive robot where he stored the 'real' information on how unfit the planet really was to live in. He programmed it to blow sky high just in case any nosey parker (in this case Romilly) happened to stumble upon it.
How did Cooper manage to move stuff around? Because he was able to use the information TARS gave him to unlock the secret of moving things in 5D.
Is Cooper travelling through time? Nope, not really. He is actually 'outside' time (hence 5D) and able to use it at his will, sort of like how you'd play with a Rubik's Cube to get different colour combos. Here, the 'colours' would represent what he wants to move around. Books in the bookshelf in this case.
Why use an old wristwatch to give Murphy signals? Probably just because it looked pretty cool, in the sense that it is a literal meaning of using idea of physical force to move time (the watch is analogue and it tells you the time, and he moves the seconds hand in Morse Code).
How did Cooper get out of the black hole Gargantua? As he had no spaceship anymore, he was probably helped out a bit by other dwellers in 5D and conveniently left near a NASA space ship to be rescued.
Why should future humans want to help humans from the past? Because if they didn't, the future humans probably wouldn't exist. So apparently it wasn't aliens. It was just us all along.
What is a tesseract? It's a four-dimensional cube that according to the movie, allows anyone who really knows what he's doing, to control those four dimensions.
Faced with a dwindling food supply due to blight (a disease that destroys crops), the survival of mankind is In jeopardy in the near future, the Earth is no longer able to sustain humanity. Additionally, changes in the air composition will also spell doom. In order to continue the survival of the species, a program that is mindbending in scale is developed to transport the survivors on Earth to another planet, no matter how far it is. Cooper is deemed to be a suitable person to pilot the mission. He successfully decodes some cryptic signals that his young daughter Murph receives (and thinks it to be the work of a ghost) and find out that they are directions. So off they go in search of where it will lead, and end up at a secret base in the middle of the night.
There, they meet Professor Brand, his scientist daughter and the core staff behind the project. Cooper is first astounded and then curious. He knows that accepting this mission might mean that he will never see his family again. Nonetheless as he tells his father in law later, he was not meant to sit at home and spend his days looking after a dying farm. So, he accepts and Murph is not in the least bit happy about it.
Reluctant goodbyes are said and the crew set off with their 'Plan A' and 'Plan B' (find a hospitable planet and they signal for the population migration to begin or repopulate a planet with cryogenically-stored embryos, respectively). After traversing through the wormhole, they emerge in another galaxy and post an internal discussion about which planet to visit, they first make their way to Miller. With towering tidal waves, the planet, they discover is wholly unsuitable for occupation. They move on hurriedly but not before Doyle is killed by the wave. Amelia is able to recover some data from the wreckage of Miller's ship. Arguments on board Endurance soon surface. Cooper thinks Amelia is motivated by her attachment to Edmunds while Amelia feels that Cooper wants to get back home to see his family and therefore, abandon the mission. They however decide on Mann. It is there that they find Mann himself still in hibernation sleep or stasis (required for travel periods spanning many years). Mann however has become deranged and tries to kill Cooper. He also murders the other crew member Romilly and attempts to maroon Cooper and and Amelia and take the population bomb (the embryos) to Edmunds's planet instead. Amelia rescues Cooper and the two try to go after him. Mann takes off and attempts to dock with the main space ship. But he botches the docking procedure and is killed outright when the airlock opens. Luckily, Amelia and Cooper are able to get the ship working again after boarding on a different section.
The two then put together a plan involving the assistive robots to fly to Gargantua's (the super massive black hole) event horizon, jettison TARS into it (to gather scientific data about the singularity within) and then make their own way to planet Edmunds as they only have that much fuel left. This done, Cooper disengages his shuttle from Amelia's vehicle (to reduce mass and thereby allow Amelia to free herself from the black hole) and he is pulled into Gargantua. His craft is shattered but he managed to eject and finds himself in a five-dimensional space where he can actually manipulate time, space and gravity. While TARS transmits data to him about the singularity, Cooper learns how to communicate with Murph and via the seconds hand of an analogue watch, give her the mecessary mathematical information required to complete Brand's equation. This allows the original 'Plan A' to succeed and Earth's population is saved.
His work done, he exits and is rescued by a NASA ship. When he awakens, he is seen recovering from the rigours of the mission in the NASA station now established near Saturn. He is able to finally meet Murph, now on her deathbed, and say his goodbye to her as she tells her younger father (paradoxically now 124 years old in Earth time but looking like he's not aged a day since the start of the mission) that "no parent should have to see their children die". She tells him to join Amelia who is on Edmunds's planet. He then sets out to find her in a new spaceship.
Watch: Interstellar Trailer
Christopher Nolan's 'Interstellar' has received massive appreciation from not only Hollywood but Bollywood celebrities too. The Matthew McConaughey and Anne Hathaway starrer, has given us a reason to hit the screens this weekend after a long dry spell of creative films.
Impressed with the film, viewers took to the social networking site Twitter in large numbers to express their experience. While some tweets urged us to go and watch the film, some tickled our funny bones. Let's take a look at some of the tweets here:
Bollywood's reaction on Interstellar
Sujoy Ghosh: interstellar has to be one of the best father/daughter story ever. forget the science.. the love story is to die for...
Mohit Marwah: #Interstellar - what a concept ! Seriously thought provoking ... 12 hours since I saw the film and still playing on my mind
Milap Zaveri: Do yourself a favour and see #Interstellar in Only IMAX! The visuals in this format take your breath away!
Rajat Kapoor: #interstellar - Fantastic.. Though 2001, a space odyssey and Solaris still retain the top sci fi spot for me- still, interstellar is special
ALSO READ: âInterstellar's plot- spoiler alert!
Tanishaa Mukerji: With #Interstellar #Nolan delivers the unexpected with excitement & layered subtext. Ul b decoding the film long after watching it! Loved it
We also came across some funny tweets. Let's take a look...
Dennis Calero: Interstellar is too smart for dumb people and too dumb for smart people
Michael Clark: I feel like I need to go home and find my old quantum physics books. #interstellar
ALSO READ: âFAQ on Interstellar- spoiler alert!
Maddy: Guys claiming #interstellar is best Sci-fi of all times have clearly not seen Bollywood films which basically defy nature, physics, et al.
Red 5: So I saw Interstellar. Still at the theater, trying to put my mind back together. Not sure if I want to. Life-changing.
ALSO READ: Interstellar Movie Review
Keh Ke Peheno: AAP bhakts: Releasing 'Interstellar' is a conspiracy by BJP to confuse voters of Delhi so that they shudn't vote a confused party like AAP.
We also came across some negative reactions on Interstellar..
Satya: There are Two Kinds Of People in this world: Those who think #Interstellar was a masterpiece. And those who are not afraid of being judged.
Lenny Abrahamason: 'Interstellar' isn't just bollox, it actually pushes the bollox envelope into regions previously unexplored. My new most hated film.