Sunday, June 30, 2013

Exploring Deep Space With The Europa Report

Europa Report
Wayfare Entertainment
Directed by Sebastian Cordero
Screenplay by Phillip Gelatt
With Christian Camargo, Embeth Davidtz, Anamaria Marinca, 
Michael Nyqvist, Daniel Wu, Karolina Wydra, Sharlto Copley
Five Scoops of Bosco

Reviewed By Allen Bacon, The Daily Bosco

There have been many Science Fiction films dealing with Deep Space Exploration.... Star Trek and 2001 A Space Odyssey quickly come to mind, but there has perhaps never been such a realistic portrayal of how that could actually happen than the latest film by Sebastian Cordero.

Call it Science Fact.

Based on a recent finding of Ice on Jupiter's fourth largest moon, Europa Report is the story of a team of independent explorers that travels to the end of the Solar System to answer the biggest question that has been challenging us: Is there life on other planets?

Cordero consulted heavily with NASA on this film, so the images, time frames, and science is an extremely realistic depiction of what would happen if that rocket blasted off today with a team of astronauts and scientists down to the fact that an independent private company backed by billionaires would actually be funding the trip.

Maybe it's because it has been over forty years since human beings have left the earth's orbit that we are hungry for a film like this.  That fact is noted as the astronauts and crew pass the Moon. "We've already gone farther than any human has gone before".

The only think I would have done differently with this film is done it in chronological order. From right before blast off to the end.  That way it would also have a feel of a Road Trip while the drama builds as the ship gets farther away from earth.  But that's just me.

Cordero smartly starts us off  and gets us right into the story at a pivotal junction of the expedition when communication is lost with Mission Control.  They're already several months into the expedition and besides the fact that they lost communication with earth, everything seems to be functioning ok and the crew is in relatively good health.  What is a space crew to do? Turn around and go home or trudge on like a modern day Magellan without backup?

Cordero then tells the story shifting back and forth to the beginning to the present.  The story is seen and told through a combination of eight on board surveillance cameras displayed all at once, CNN (or a network like CNN) news reports with expert analysis from experts like Neil deGrasse Tyson offering explanations on what we are seeing, and a "Found-footage" video.

The actors play the parts coolly and realistically as if they are scientists with the understanding of how big of a project and expedition this really is.

And the special effects are both realistic and created with an eye to detail even if they are on a relatively low budget.

This movie arrives in the theaters next week but can currently be seen On Demand in many markets.

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