The Martian

Rated: PG-13

        Back when my husband and I saw the first trailers for The Martian on TV he really wanted to see it, while I had no interest whatsoever. I thought to myself, “Oh great; another year and so another take on the Interstellar and Gravity themes that seem to now be a yearly occurrence!” As time went on my husband pushed and pushed, claiming that we never go see anything he wants to see, (which is mostly true), but that didn’t matter to me. What mattered to me was that here was yet another version of the same “Lost in Space” boring garbage that’s now coming on a yearly basis. It’s not that I hated Gravity and Interstellar by any means; it’s just that I get tired of seeing the same “new” films time after time, even if they are presented in slightly different ways. And so it turned into a kind of standoff. Every time the trailers would show we’d have a back and forth about why he wanted to see it so bad and why I didn’t. Lucky for my husband I follow Neil deGrasse Tyson on Twitter (@neiltyson ), because on October 2, when The Martian opened in theaters, Mr. Tyson sent out a myriad of tweets that changed my mind, (more on those tweets in a few).
The Martian is set in the not too distant future, when we’ve finally sent manned missions to Mars. During one such mission a serious storm erupts on the planet, forcing the crew to leave. Unfortunately, Matt Damon’s character Mark Watney gets left behind. Watney must then use all of his skills to figure out a way to both survive and to signal NASA that he’s still alive.
        While Mr. Tyson’s tweets didn’t give anything about the film away, they enticed me. Things like “The Martian Movie…where fluency in science, technology, engineering and math rule all decisions of survival,” and “The Martian Movie, where you can learn all the ways that being scientifically literate can save your life,” and “The Martian Movie, where science, not human emotion, drive the plot’s humor, interpersonal relations, tension and suspense.” It was after reading these (and a myriad of others) that I changed my mind and finally gave in to going to see it.
        I have to say, at this point, that I’m glad I finally gave in to my husband’s pressure.
The Martian was well-acted, well thought out, well written and well filmed. While my inner cynic did come up with a few things to nitpick, (such as “Was Damon’s beard real or fake, because it didn’t look good at all,” and “Boy do I hate listening to Damon (or anyone else for that matter) eat on screen,”) they were minor issues for the most part and didn’t take much, if anything, away from the overall enjoyment of the film for me.
        Anyone who loves science, engineering, math, technology, or all of the above, needs to make sure to see
The Martian! And if you don’t like that stuff and prefer more action, I hear the new Star Wars will be out soon.

The Martian is rated PG 13, was directed by Ridley Scott and stars Matt Damon, Jessica Chastain, Kristen Wiig, Michael Pena, Jeff Daniels and many more. It’s in theaters now and should be released on Blu Ray, DVD and digital download sometime in February (I’ll keep you posted).