Ad Astra

By Andrew McManus - Contributing Columnist

Ad Astra

Directed by Neil Marshall

Starring: Brad Pitt, Tommy Lee Jones, Liv Tyler, Ruth Negga, Donald Sutherland

Runtime: 123 minutes

Rating: PG-13 (for some violence and bloody images, and brief strong language)

We delve into the sci-fi genre this week with Ad Astra. Personally I LOVE sci-fi films. It’s no secret that Star Wars is one of my favorite series. I may or may not have the Millenium Falcon tattooed on my arm? What I found interesting about the film from the jump was the title. Ad Astra. In Latin, it translates to “to the stars” My question was would Brad Pitt be able to blend with the story or would it just be Brad Pitt in space?

Onto the film.

We open in our near future. Earth is in danger. We see power surges happening more and more frequently which causes catastrophic death. Spacecom (U.S. Space Command) informs our hero Roy McBride (Pitt) they’ve figured out what is causing these surges. There was a project years ago called “Lima Project” that’s purpose was to go as far as possible to look for other life forms. This was led and brought together by a fellow astronaut, Roy’s Father Clifford McBride (Jones) They’ve had silence for 16 years but Spacecom believes he may be ALIVE!!!

McBride (Pitt) has one mission. To find his father. The hope is with finding Clifford (Jones) they will come up with answers to stop the surges. With the plan in place, the journey begins.

First and foremost, this film is BEAUTIFUL. I have lost track of the times in space films, orbit looks “fake” just a tad off. Not here. You feel like you’re in the space ship with

him and taking a journey to the farthest depths of space. Also, the soundtrack is FANTASTIC. I’ve always enjoyed films where the music enhances the scenes. Our heartbeat rises as the music intensifies, while we see Roy missing his lover (Tyler) that soft tones put us in his mind and heart. With the look and sound being top-notch the next thing to note is how is the acting?

Spoiler alert. Brad Pitt kills it. At times, this film reminded me of Castaway starring Tom Hanks. In that film, we see Hanks for the majority of the film alone. The audience as on a journey with one character and if the acting fails the film holds no weight and we quickly stop caring for the characters or plot.

I didn’t expect Pitt to be so deep in this role and to be so believable. We see a man who is lost. He has lost his father, and you can hear the sadness in his voice and the pain when he furrows his brows. We’ve all had loss and when that happens our voices change.

This film isn’t perfect. At times I was bored. There are moments of silence, as we see the journey unfold. Like I said it is beautiful to look at but I wish the film picked up the pace in a few spots. The plot flows well and I didn’t feel it was to complex to ask yourself, “What is going on?” This helps with a simple mission. To find someone you love. I encourage you to see this film, for the acting, the soundtrack, and most importantly the visuals in front of your eyes. #SHOPLOCAL 4 stars out of 5

By Andrew McManus

Contributing Columnist

Andrew McManus is Operations Manager for Patties & Pints and its parent company Eflow Development.He can be reached at [email protected] or 740-981-9158

Andrew McManus is Operations Manager for Patties & Pints and its parent company Eflow Development.He can be reached at [email protected] or 740-981-9158