The Midnight Sky- Netflix Original Movie Review

The Midnight Sky

Dir: George Clooney

Starring: George Clooney and Felicity Jones

Based on the novel: Lilly Brooks- Dalton

The world at the end

Set in a world on the brink of the apocalypse, lone scientist Augustine (Clooney) is desperately trying to get a message to astronaut Sully (Jones). Sully and her crew are on a return mission to earth, but unbeknownst to them a mysterious global catastrophe has devastated the human race and ended earth near inhabitable. Whilst Augustine stays behind to continue to try and make contact with the space crew, he discovers a little girl, Iris who has been left behind. 

All alone

There is an immense sense of longing in this film, whether that is for home, to see loved ones of just for a human connection. Augustine is the embodiment of the ‘last man on earth’ kind of idea. He is weary you can read it is in his movements, his speech. This is a man who after achieving so much, is now feeling the weight of what was neglected in the pursuit of knowledge. The Midnight Sky feels like a lament for a man with regrets. Whether regrets for the missed moments or the lost loves or both. 

George Clooney in an orange coat with little girl in snowy landscape in front of a bright green lit up sky

Slow, not impacting

Whilst aiming and mostly succeeding to be a melancholic and moving, it mostly drags its feet. There are some heartwarming scenes between Augustine and Iris, however, The Midnight Sky does not disguise the plot twists that well and it is easy to guess where the storyline is going. With the film split into scenes from the point of view of the space crew and back on death, they feel like two completely separate films instead of two elements of one story. 

The vastness of space

The sequences in space, particularly the spacewalk scene are reminiscent of Gravity and, it is no surprise that Clooney may have borrowed some vision from Alfonso Cuaròn in terms of the vast emptiness, the sound design and the lens flares. It is an undoubtedly impressive sequence. 

Lone man looks towards the camera, the earth is visable in the background behind him looking down on it from space

Strong performances in The Midnight Sky

Where gravity was an undoubted hit, The Midnight Sky has a fair few misses. This is by no means a hopeful film, it is quite clear there is going to be no great happy ending. However in the journey, these characters embark on there are moments of calm, love and laughter. Clooney’s character manages to find absolution for whatever crimes he believes he committed. Even with the feeling of disjointedness in the blending of these two storylines, the performances from the lead actors is very watchable, they are confident and capable actors and is shown in their performances. 

Watch The Midnight Sky on Netflix now! 

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