Movie Reviews

Published on February 3rd, 2017 | by Josh Aja


The Space Between Us

Gardner Elliot (Asa Butterfield) is a 16 year old boy who has never set foot on Earth. His mother found out she was pregnant on while on a mission to live on Mars for four years. Just after arriving on the red planet his mother gave birth and then sadly passed away. Since his birth was an unplanned surprise to his mother, NASA and Genesis, the private company that made the trip to Mars possible, they all decide to keep his existence a classified secret. So for the next 16 years he was raised on Mars by a revolving crew of a dozen or so scientist who stayed on the space station called East Texas. Gardner relishes the chance to be known and to travel to Earth. On Mars all he has is his self-proclaimed best friend is an artificial intelligent robot named Centaur (voiced by Peter Chelsom) and a couple of people who he can call friends. One is Kendra (Carla Gugino), a mother figure who watches over and tries to protect him. The other is Tulsa (Britt Robertson), a teenage school girl from Earth, who he chats online with every chance he gets and desperately wants to meet.

Gardner finds a box of his mother’s things in a storage room and a photo of who he believes to be his father. His urge to go to Earth and meet his father and Tulsa is to the point he will do almost anything. Kendra seeing the pain that Gardner is in she decides to reach out to Genesis Director Chen (BD Wong) and founder Nathaniel Shepherd (Gary Oldman) and requests they allow him to come to Earth. Shepherd is against it. Pointing out that, due to the reduced gravity of Mars, Gardner’s bones will be weaker and more brittle and his heart will be enlarged. Almost assuredly making living on Earth impossible. Determined to make it to Gardner goes through painful operations to strengthen his bones and intense training to improve his muscles. After 16 years he is finally allowed to travel to Earth. Only to be quarantined and battered with tests upon arrival. Undeterred, he breaks out of the facility and heads out to find Tulsa. He finds her and convinces her to help him find his father. So they head out cross country to find his family and seem to be finding love along the way. But Kendra and Shepherd are hot on their heels. They rush to track Gardner down before his health deteriorates and is unable to survive in Earth’s environment.

The Sci-Fi story is a heartwarming one in The Space Between Us. It is a futuristic love story of two teens who are worlds apart, literally in this instance, but both find the one person in the universe who is meant for them. Butterfield does a good job of playing Gardner and showing how someone removed from this world can be awkward and out of place but also be amazingly honest and forthright. Robertson performance is okay as the tough product of a foster system teen that has a rough exterior but longs for a family. The love story and interaction between these two characters is definitely the bright spot. The rest of the cast is good and the overall story had some original concepts, such as the first human born on Mars. But there are times that are a little cheesy for my personal taste. Also the ending in my opinion was predictable and a forgone conclusion. How the film was presented visually was hit and miss for me. There would be beautiful shots of mountain passes, the ocean or the desert that really captured the beauty of Earth as if they were being seen for the first time. Then there were times when the shot was blurry and you could tell the people, vehicles or aircraft was out of place. The shots of space were very much the same some good some bad.

Overall the movie was good but not really something I would want to go back and see again. It definitely had the feel of a movie you could take the whole family to, very wholesome. I wish it was more constant visually.

2.5 out of 5


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