Discuss I.S.S.

Weightlessness throughout the film. No sound in space. Everything has to be done slowly. No task is fast or easy. Equipment is fragile. The slightest deviation can cause equipment to malfunction. All resources aboard the spacecraft are finite.

The filmmakers really did their homework on this one.

I've said it before in other discussions. But now, it has been some 67 years since man first sent craft into space (Sputnik, 1957). And I don't think anyone from back then-- be they a professional scientist or a loose-with-the-facts science fiction writer --would've thought that in 2024, humans would still be at a very cumbersome, delicate phase of space travel. It will be more than 50 years since we've returned people to the Moon, if the current schedule holds, and more than 70 years into man's space journey before humans land on Mars for the very first time, in the 2030s. How frail, and unremarkable, the human species truly is.

Returning to the film-- many will not like the ending. But the ending is not the point. And many will probably find the actions of the joint U.S.-Russian crew to be unbelievable. I do not. It is one of several possibilities, in a tense world. And very intelligent people do very stupid things. But I do not want to spoil the film at this early stage of its release.

The images from this film will stay with you. I found it captivating.

A 7 out of 10, from me.

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Hears "no sound in space" Immediately perks up 😃

Bummer that the film overall didn't impress you, but I'm tempted to see it just for the realism you mentioned. IMO cinema's insistence on putting flashy loud explosions in space (not to mention pew-pew "lasers") is the greatest embarrassment to the scifi genre. Kubrick showed us the way more than 50 years ago, showed us that realism in space is plenty terrifying as it is. I can't figure out why so few follow suit.

Hey nc, have you seen 2010: The Year We Make Contact? The plot of I.S.S. sounds hauntingly like that: American & Russians stuck on a space station together when war breaks out on Earth. You mentioned how ridiculous their actions seemed in this movie, so if you haven't seen 2010 you might want to check it out to cleanse your palate. Believable characters and great acting (including an uncharacteristic serious role by John Lithgow). As a "sequel" to 2001 it comes up shy, but as a standalone film about the spread of the Cold War into space I think it was brilliant. And although it didn't have Kubrick, I think K's shoes were acceptably filled by director Peter Hyams (Capricorn One, Outland).

I don't believe 2010 had sounds in space, except when a ship was burning up in the upper atmosphere. (Astro-physicists help me out: If there is enough atmosphere for an object to burn up, then it should be enough for sound, right?)

Back to what you were saying about space travel in general, I agree that nobody could've predicted how slowly and poorly we've advanced in space travel. I think Kubrick was really insightful at portraying how awkward we'd be up there (like his ironic use of Strauss waltzes as we watch a space flight attendant trying to be graceful in zero-G). Maybe it's time for filmmakers to own that fact!

Thank you for the reply, rooprect.

ISS did impress me. In my book a 6 on up out of 10 is a good rating. I was very impressed that the director (Gabriela Cowperthwaite) took what must have been the much more difficult route of filming slow, weightless SFX scenes and continuous slow movements by the cast, throughout the entire film.

Although this movie could be classified as a "thriller", an "actioner" it is not. And, without giving too much away, the ending is what some might consider "unresolved". For all these reasons, this movie definitely has a more "World cinema" rather than "American" feel to it, which does make me wonder if ISS will struggle in the U.S. market. This is not a "yee-haw!" movie.

Another thing I liked is that this movie did not take the M. Night Shyamalan route where the disaster was some kind of contrived test. No, the cataclysmic event on Earth is real.

Now, granted, ISS is no 10 out of 10, which is what I rated the actual 2001: ASO. But it's still damn good.

Interesting that you brought up 2010, which you and I have discussed before (during the Russian "Ukrainian spacesuit" news story), and which I also rated a 7.

If you do see ISS, and find the actions of the joint crew hard to believe, just recall that in 2010, the initial impulse of the mixed crew in that movie was to follow their orders and not cooperate, until Dr. Floyd convinced them otherwise.

Again, I found ISS very satisfactory. It's just hard to reach the rarefied heights of Kubrick:)

Sold! I.S.S. is officially on my watch list.

I'd forgotten our great discussion on 2010 when Russia first invaded Ukraine and the ISS crew had to sort things out. Yes it's definitely a ripe subject. I think we both grew up in the late shadow of the original Cold War followed by the short-lived hope of Gorbachev's friendly glasnost, only to see us dumped right back into the icebox of cold. We've been thru the rodeo, so stories like this are intriguing. No yee-haw required lol.

You got me even more primed by mentioning that this film has a non-American vibe. I love it when filmmakers can make their point without stooping to the Hollywood pace. I think more & more films are daring to do this although they always remain on the fringe.

Ok special effects, you could tell they were in front of green screen with harnesses, their clothes gave it away! Plus the biggest goof was the knife at the end on the table and not floating!!

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