‘The Martian’: How Matt Damon’s New Space Movie Is Different


The Martian, starring Matt Damon, is undoubtedly one of the most anticipated movies of the fall and from the looks of the latest trailer, it’s easy to see why. The second clip for the space epic promises even more fun and adventure than the first, following Damon’s Mark Watney as he fights to find his way back home.

Based on Andy Weir’s best-selling 2011 novel of the same name, The Martian stars Damon as astronaut Watney, who’s left stranded on the surface of Mars when the rest of the crew presumes him dead after a massive storm. As the other crewmates return to Earth, Watney finds himself abandoned and alone. He must rely on his wit, spirit, and the few supplies he has left in order to survive and try to find a way to signal back to Earth for help. The movie is directed by prolific filmmaker Ridley Scott (Prometheus).

Viewers got their initial look at the sci-fi adventure earlier this summer, with the release of the first trailer. That clip captured NASA announcing Watney’s presumed death, only to quickly find out that’s not the case. The teaser made it clear that The Martian will be funnier and more lighthearted than other recent space adventure films like Gravity or Interstellar (the latter of which Damon also starred in).

The movie’s lighter feel is reinforced in the latest trailer, which places even more of an emphasis on humor. In the clip, Watney is resolute in finding a way to survive alone, even if it means having to make water and grow food on a planet where nothing grows. How? “Science the sh*t out of this,” as Watney puts it. A montage of him doing just that – securing food and oxygen – then plays to the tune of “All Along The Watchtower.” The greatest quote of the trailer? “I am the greatest botanist on this planet,” Watney says (while on Mars. Alone.)

The new trailer also makes more room for the film’s supporting players, including Jessica Chastain (who also co-starred in Interstellar). The clip shows Chastain’s  Captain Lewis as she rallies her fellow astronauts in order to head back to space and rescue Watney – despite that NASA (particularly an official played by Jeff Daniels) doesn’t see the sense in re-launching a risky and expensive mission for one person. Chiwetel Ejiofor is also seen in mission control, while Michael Peña plays pilot Rick Martinez. Kate Mara, Kristin Wiig, Donald Glover, Sean Bean, and Mackenzie Davis also co-star.

Between its stellar, star-studded ensemble cast and compelling story, it’s no surprise that The Martian has received such good buzz in recent months. Its first trailer earned such an overwhelmingly positive reception upon its debut that 20th Century Fox decided to move its release date forward in order to avoid competing blockbusters like The Hunger Games and Star Wars. The movie has even spurred excitement from NASA, whose experts reportedly served as consultants on the project.

With its humor-driven approach, sense of adventure and inclusion of actual science, it seems like The Martian won’t have issues setting itself apart from other space flicks and appealing to wide-ranging audiences.

The Martian is scheduled to hit theaters on October 2.

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