1385 – Ad Astra (2019)

timespace coordinates: “near future” (2050’s ?) commercial flight to the Moon > the ship Cepheus, bound for Mars > Norwegian biomedical research space station >  underground SpaceCom base on Mars > the Lima Project (Neptune’s rings)ad_astra_xlgAd Astra is a 2019 American science fiction adventure film produced, co-written, and directed by James Gray. Starring Brad PittTommy Lee JonesRuth NeggaLiv Tyler, and Donald Sutherland, it follows an astronaut who goes into space in search of his lost father, whose experiment threatens the Solar System. + scored by Max Richter. +

Reviews out of the Venice Film Festival compared it to well-worn sci-fi touchstones “2001: A Space Odyssey” and “Solaris,” and “Apocalypse Now,” in part due to its probing adventure narrative. Gray says he went straight to the urtext that inspired them, Homer’s epic poem “The Odyssey.” (cnn)

The title means “to the stars” in Latin. It is often used as a shorthand for “Per Aspera Ad Astra” (Through the hardships to the Stars).

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1127 – Red Planet (2000)

timespace coordinates: 2056 A.D., Earth is in ecological crisis as a consequence of pollution and overpopulation. Automated interplanetary missions have been seeding Mars with atmosphere-producing algae as the first stage of terraforming the planet. When the oxygen quantity produced by the algae is inexplicably reduced, the crew of Mars-1 investigate—a crew consisting of Quinn Burchenal (Tom Sizemore), a geneticist; Bud Chantilas (Terence Stamp), an aging philosophical scientist and surgeon; systems engineer Robby Gallagher (Val Kilmer); commander Kate Bowman (Carrie-Anne Moss); pilot Ted Santen (Benjamin Bratt); and terraforming scientist Chip Pettengill (Simon Baker). (wiki)

Red Planet is a 2000 US | Australian science fiction thriller film directed by Antony Hoffman.   –   imdb

801 – Minority Report (2002)

timespace coordinates: 2054 Washington, D.C. and Northern Virginia6HDFaGIMinority Report is a 2002 American neo-noir science fiction film directed by Steven Spielberg and loosely based on the short story “The Minority Report” by Philip K. Dick. It is set primarily in Washington, D.C., and Northern Virginia in the year 2054, where PreCrime, a specialized police department, apprehends criminals based on foreknowledge provided by three psychics called “precogs“. The cast includes Tom Cruise as Chief of PreCrime John Anderton, Colin Farrell as Department of Justice agent Danny Witwer, Samantha Morton as the senior precog Agatha, and Max von Sydow as Anderton’s superior Lamar Burgess.

The film combines elements of tech noirwhodunitthriller and science fiction genres, as well as a traditional chase film, as the main protagonist is accused of a crime he has not committed and becomes a fugitive. Spielberg has characterized the story as “fifty percent character and fifty percent very complicated storytelling with layers and layers of murder mystery and plot”. The film’s central theme is the question of free will versus determinism. It examines whether free will can exist if the future is set and known in advance. Other themes include the role of preventive government in protecting its citizenry, the role of media in a future state where technological advancements make its presence nearly boundless, the potential legality of an infallible prosecutor, and Spielberg’s repeated theme of broken families.2002_minority_report_wallpaper_004During pre-production, Spielberg consulted numerous scientists in an attempt to present a more plausible future world than that seen in other science fiction films, and some of the technology designs in the film have proven prescient. Minority Report has a unique visual style. It uses high contrast to create dark colors and shadows, much like a film noir picture. The film’s overlit shots feature desaturated colors which were achieved by bleach-bypassing the film’s negative in post-production. (wiki)

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