Let me start by saying, I believe I just witnessed the best movie of 2015. I did not read the book but prior to the screening of The Martian, but it is an opening day must-see.
And, yes, you did read correctly. I said the best movie of 2015, so far. When I go see a movie I always try to go into it with an open mind, accepting the movie for what it's supposed to be; no matter what the genre. If it is a thriller the movie should thrill me. If it is science fiction I want to be visually and intellectually amazed. If it is a comedy the movie should make me laugh. In the case of The Martian I went in expecting sci-fi and thrills but was pleasantly surprised to see comedy as well; so, I got all three. This movie had me on the edge of my seat at times and other times laughing out loud. The director of The Martian, Ridley Scott, did a masterful job of combining the humor, sci-fi and the thrill elements in the movie without it seeming forced. And speaking of the director, The Martian is classic Ridley Scott. Whenever Ridley does a movie in space, he always seems to capture the right amount of realism, not only visually but also how the actors interact with each other. That realism in movies like Alien, which Ridley Scott also directed, is why I am such a big fan of his work.
Ridley also directed Alien
As you can see Ridley Scott has been making great movies for quite sometime and definitely has a Oscar worthy movie with The Martian, in my opinion. And speaking of Oscar worthy, The Martian should have plenty of contenders. The obvious main contender will be Matt Damon, of course, as Mark Watney a.k.a. The Martian. Obviously most of Matt's performance is on Mars alone, which is why I felt going into the movie that he had to nail his performance as Mark Watney. Two movies come to mind when I think of the main character being alone for most of the movie. One is I Am Legend with Will Smith and the other is Cast Away with Tom Hanks. Both were great performances that sold the audience that they were truly alone and against all odds, but it was Tom Hank's in Cast Away that I was reminded of when watching Matt Damon in The Martian.
Stuck on a deserted island
Stuck on a deserted Mars
I don't know about you, but I would rather be stuck on an island. Tom's performance in Cast Away netted him an Oscar nomination and I can certainly see Matt at least getting that same Oscar nomination. To be honest, The Martian could be considered Cast Away on Mars, so an Oscar nomination would only seem fitting. I also really enjoyed the performance of Chiwetel Ejiofor.
The Martian had everything that you could ask for out of a movie. Great story, you will be emotionally invested in the characters; especially Matt Damon's. Thrills, humor, great acting, great cast and a realism for sci-fi movie that only Ridley Scott can deliver. Oh, and I must mention that Ridley wasted no time getting you involved in the story. So you will get your money's worth for the entire 2 hour and 21 minute duration of the movie. This is a must-see in theaters and in 3D. Do not let this movie leave theaters without you seeing it.