Moon (2009), directed by Duncan Jones, is a thought provoking and melancholy movie that showcases an incredible job of acting by Sam Rockwell. It really is a surprisingly interesting movie but at the same time suffers from a serious, but luckily non fatal, case of nothinghappensforalongtimeitis.
It is really difficult to discuss Moon in specifics, as pretty much everything that happens is pretty much a spoiler. It would be best not knowing much about this movie going in. That actually shouldn’t be too hard, as this film really did not receive much press or box office success. The reason for that probably lies in the fact Rockwell is not a huge star and that it is really hard to sell a movie like this without giving anything away.
So here are but the barest of essentials, Moon takes place in the future where the energy crisis has been solved due to the harvesting of solar charged moon rocks. Sam Rockwell is THE harvester of these rocks. Apparently it is so expensive to put these guys on the moon, they can only afford one at a time. Don’t know if there was an explanation for this, but it does seem odd. So Sam (that’s the character's name as well) is on a 3 year deal with the company to harvest the rocks then he is free to go back home. During that 3 year span he is in absolute solitude, his only "company" is a seemingly sentient computer system voiced by Kevin Spacey. As time goes on things start to become dicey. The film takes place 2 weeks before his planned homecoming.
That is about all I can say without ruining anything.
Sam Rockwell is literally the only actor in this film that logs more than a minute of face time. Basically if he does not give a good performance the weight of the film will crumble under it. Luckily for the film makers, he not only gives a good one but a great one. He is able to really keep us captivated in a movie featuring no other actors and no discernible action or location changes. He is basically able to keep us in the movie despite it seeming like a one man stage play.
Additionally I am not sure if Kevin Spacey voice emanating from a robot would make me feel comfortable. He is creepy enough, now he is a robot. Well played.
To Netflix or not to Netflix?
I definitely recommend Moon, with some stipulations. Know you are in for slow burn, but it is often times intense and mind blowing in its reveals. My initial thought after seeing this movie was that it would have made a great Twilight Zone episode. It really could have made a great short story, but because of its feature length it loses some of its momentum. There just isn’t enough going on at times to make it a truly compelling film. I could get more specific, but once again I’d rather not reveal anything at all. Definitely a worthwhile sci-fi offering.