Mission To Mars (2000)

BRIAN DE PALMA

Bil’s rating (out of 5):  BBB.5

USA, 2000, , , .  Story by , , , Screenplay by Jim Thomas, John Thomas, .  Cinematography by .  Produced by .  Music by .  Production Design by .  Costume Design by .  Film Editing by .

Slow-moving but gorgeously designed space adventure that undermines its audience by delivering a lame ending after a huge buildup.  It concerns the adventure of a crew on a mission to the red planet to save a previous crew of astronauts who were never heard from after landing there.  Some have criticized director Brian DePalma’s Kubrickian-ripoff pace as being far too dull, but I thoroughly enjoyed the opportunity to watch science-fiction that was at least trying for the level of seriousness even if it never really reaches that goal. The film benefits mostly from Ed Verreaux’s stunning production design and a great ensemble supporting cast, who more than make up for Gary Sinise being amiable but not quite satisfying as a heroic leading man (and what is with his eyeliner?). This one is far better than the other Mars movie of the year, Red Planet, if only because it has a true respect for the majestic wonder of outer space.

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