Passage to Mars is one of the best documentaries on space exploration matters I have seen in years. Actually, no... It's not a documentary. And here is why...
The film qualities are countless: astonishing cinematography, editing, scoring and innovative narration style (for a documentary, using the voice over as the expedition's leader diaries vs a usual "witness narrator", was a great path).
But beyond a cinematic successful enterprise - or, perhaps, because of it - the film manages to take you to other worlds.
Beyond the "road movie" - a NASA 2,000 mile - never before attempted sea ice crossing - this trek is a fable, almost an allegory, by the poetry blending with ethereal landscapes where our own thoughts get unleashed and free to reflect on our own existence and the very meaning of our destiny. Here, in space, or anywhere.
The way Passage to Mars ventures into unknown territories (the Arctic and Mars), it can barely be categorized in the documentary genre. Just call it a film, that's what it is. An artistic exploration of the unknown and of our deepest soul.
"Why do we Explore?", to quote the film, is what the film is about. And I loved it, beyond the spectacular and entertaining quality of the film. Makes your mind roving.
Passage to Mars is, to me, a Passage between Science (the NASA expedition) and Fiction (our destiny in space and on Mars). So, perhaps, this is the purest science fiction film you can find this month.
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