The Martian - Recap Review

What's good

- Funny, emotional and inspiring all at the same time
- Strong one-man performance by Matt Damon
- Scientifically very realistic and detailed
- Awesome Mars scenery and use of CGI and practical effects

"I guess, I'm just gonna wait for the bus then..."

What's bad

- Occasionally loses dynamic during Earth scenes

- Final act feels a bit stretched out

While necessary, Earth scenes still feel much less interesting.


Kristen Wiig's casting as the PR spokesperson for NASA

They really couldn't have cast anybody else?

The Verdict

After years of very hit and miss efforts, The Martian finally is an exceptionally strong movie from famous director Ridley Scott. Feeling very much like a perfect blend between Apollo 13 and Cast Away, The Martian's success expectedly mostly relies on Matt Damon's acting performance as the titular stranded astronaut on Mars. Luckily, Matt Damon completely nails the role of Mark Watney. Just like the entire movie itself, which seemlessly transcends from sad to surprisingly many funny moments, the character of Mark Watney is greatly balanced in his depiction of a man whose personality comes off as incredibly optimistic as well as very relatable at the same time. Even despite his scientific expertise, which more than once helps him out on his several realistically depicted problems on Mars, Watney nevertheless still feels like a real everyday person who actively struggles to survive and is still afraid to die.
With all the "main meat" being centered around Matt Damon's/Watney's scenes on Mars, the necessary yet slower scenes on Earth in relation to NASA's rescue mission plans make the movie lose quite a bit of its momentum among its otherwise good pacing though.

The Martian might not be a milestone movie, since its story concept has been utilized in many other movies before, yet rarely has this concept been done in such an overall appealing and beautiful package covering so many different facettes.
With that said, The Martian is a very inspirational and gripping sci-fi movie that marks one of Ridley Scott's best works in years.

Final Verdict: 8 out of 10

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