Four Depressed Astronauts – Dark Star

21 09 2011

Dark Star (John Carpenter and Dan O'Bannon - 1974)

The idea of going into space is an idea that has been around for many years. In the 1960’s People started to fly into space and even land on the moon. The idea behind it has always been exciting and now with companies like Virgin Galactic offering rides into space for any civilian who wants to the idea of living on other planets is coming closer and closer to it actually happening. However if you watch Dark Star you might change your opinion on space travel.

Dark Star is a film about a group of Astronauts (Lieutenant Doolittle, Sergeant Pinback, Boiler and Talby) on a ship called Dark Star who have to bomb unstable planets so that other planets in the system can be colonised. The film was Directed by John Carpenter and co-written by Carpenter and Dan O’Bannon (who also plays Pinback).

The Astronauts have been in space for 20 years. The ships former captain; Commander Powell is in Cryogenic Suspension so he can still give advice to the crew. The ship has constant system malfunctions (such as the destruction of the ships entire stock of toilet paper) and a bored crew who try to keep themselves distracted (such as boiler who enjoys target practice with the ships laser rifle). After flying through an electrical storm things get worse for the crew as a communication laser keeps telling a smart bomb to prepare to detonate. Sergeant Pinback has to deal with an alien which looks like a beach ball and when a smart bomb decides to detonate without disconnecting from the ship, lieutenant Doolittle starts to talk to it in a philosophical way, but after being successful the bomb starts to speak like it is God and blows the ship up when it says “let there be light”. Only Doolittle and Talby survive the explosion because they were in space and some distance away from the ship. Talby flies away with a group of asteroids and Doolittle (who likes surfing) uses a piece of metal from the ship and surfs down into the atmosphere of a planet they were going to blow up.

The film’s dark setting is helped along by scary and slightly tense music which also feels a bit dark. However the film’s main tune is a nice lift up and is something nice to listen to in a film where it is mostly dark. 

Dark Star is supposed to be a Comedy Film but it is quite hard to see some of the funny situations. However the role of Pinback brings out the comedy scenes such as some of the scenes with the Alien Beach Ball and a scene in a lift. But apart from these scenes with Pinback the film does not contain much in the way of Comedy. It is a hard film to get into and is sometimes hard to understand but does have a sense of enjoyment about it and can be quite fun. Science Fiction fans will probably get more out of Dark Star than Non-Sci-Fi fans. However that does not mean Non-Sci-Fi fans won’t like it. Dark Star is an enjoyable film but it can be hard to understand and so you may want to watch it a few times to get the story but don’t let that put you off from watching it.





One response

22 09 2011

manonmona reblogged this from Espacio de MANON.

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