Thursday, October 8, 2015
Review: The Martian by Andy Weir - Book & Movie Review
Author: Andy Weir
Publisher: Del Rey
Published Date: 28 August 2014
Buy: Amazon | The Book Depository | Dymocks Australia
I’m stranded on Mars.
I have no way to communicate with Earth.
I’m in a Habitat designed to last 31 days.
If the Oxygenator breaks down, I’ll suffocate. If the Water Reclaimer breaks down, I’ll die of thirst. If the Hab breaches, I’ll just kind of explode. If none of those things happen, I’ll eventually run out of food and starve to death.
So yeah. I’m screwed. (summary from Goodreads)
Enthralling and thrilling, The Martian is more fun that you'd probably expect!
I loved this book. From start to finish it is an interesting read and I never wanted to put it down. I admit to only learning about The Martian when I saw the first trailer for the movie. I was instantly intrigued and then a friend enticed (read: demanded!) me to read it. I figured I'd maybe enjoy it but not be quite as into it as I actually was. And it's all because of Weir's MC, Watney. His humour, his constant sarcasm, in the face of every seemingly insurmountable odds is hilarious and entirely captivating. With so much high tension, considering all of the things that could and do go wrong, the humour is a great balance. There's also a lot of science - a lot! - to The Martian, and it definitely went mostly over my head, despite even the layman's descriptions, but every one of Watney's witty asides had me loving what I was reading and not wanting to miss any bit of it. All of Weir's characters make this story great. Each adds a genuineness and heart to it. The point of view chapters from Earth based characters proved just how very not alone Watney was and how far people are willing to go for one another.
The Martian isn't just an epic story of Mars and space travel, the terror of survival, but of everything good about humanity. It is a story of hope, and it is hilariously awesome.
Title: The Martian
Starring: Matt Damon, Jessica Chastain, Kristen Wiig, Jeff Daniels, Michael Pena, Sean Bean, Kate Mara, Sebastian Stan, Aksel Hennie, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Mackenzie Davis, Donald Glover and Benedict Wong.
Director: Ridley Scott
Writers: Drew Goddard (screenplay) and Andy Weir (author)
Released: 1 October 2015
During a manned mission to Mars, Astronaut Mark Watney is presumed dead after a fierce storm and left behind by his crew. But Watney has survived and finds himself stranded and alone on the hostile planet. With only meager supplies, he must draw upon his ingenuity, wit and spirit to subsist and find a way to signal to Earth that he is alive. (summary from IMDb)
Obviously, loving the book as I did, I had high expectations for the movie. And I wasn't all that worried they wouldn't be met, to be honest. Thankfully, that was right. The movie is fantastic. It changes up some things from the book, but nothing so significant as to be disappointing. The heart of the story remains. I found certain changes to be necessary. The humour of the book could not reasonably be translated to film, at least not as it stands. Watney's cocky wit is still there, don't get me wrong. But the movie couldn't rely on his transcripts as the book could. Instead, more physical action was needed and the filmmaker's did a great job incorporating humour through that. The Martian as a film is just as thrilling, captivating, entertaining and hilarious as the book. The cinematography is amazing and the music is brilliant. I hope you like disco! Matt Damon is the perfect Watney, and every actor aligned just as well with my imaginings from when I read the book. Though, okay, a few I was aware of before reading the book and so I naturally imagined them to begin with! If you enjoyed the book, see the movie. If you haven't read The Martian, still see the movie. But also read the book! I've actually seen The Martian twice - it's that good! - and with people who had both read and not read the book. They all loved it equally.