The Martian

TheMartian THE MARTIAN Review by Carla Renata for

This past week, NASA discovered that there is water on Mars.  Is it drinkable?  Does this mean there is life on the planet?  How much is the government really sharing with the world?

It seems the release of the Matt Damon, Ridley Scott directed Sci-Fi hit "The Martian" opened right on time.  NASA space crew ARES III is on Mars when an unexpected sand storm hits.  As the crew attempts to back on board the ship, a satellite dish hits astronaut Mark Watney (Matt Damon).  Believing their crew member has perished in the storm the Ares III blast off without him.  When he finally resurfaces it is in the red dirt on the surface of Mars.

Realizing he is alone, Watney has to decide whether or not to give up and die or devise a plan for survival.  Adapated from the best-selling novel by Andy Weir, the audience is taking on a wild ride and crash course of Mars survival through the eyes of one man.

In the beginning, feeling like "Castaway" on Mars, this film quickly shifts into an educational, intense-action-packed story with many twists and turns keeping the audience totally engaged until the very last frame.

Matt Damon as Mark Watney carries this film with an ease and charisma that just might land him an Oscar nomination (his first for Lead Actor since "Good Will Hunting in 1997).  Looks like all that training he has received as Jason Bourne served Damon extremely well in this flick.



Kristen Wiig is just ridiculously funny...even in a Sci-Fi/Adventure flick as the lead PR rep for NASA.  Chiwetel Ejiofor once again saying more when silent than with his given dialogue is spot on as NASA Scientist Vincent Kapoor.  Jeff Daniels is very effective as the hard-as-nails with a heart NASA head honcho - Teddy Sanders.   Other than Damon,  Jessica Chastain is once again shedding another layer of her chameleon skin as Ares III Commander Melissa Lewis proving she is always a force to be reckoned with on the silver screen.


Topping the weekend B.O with a domestic gross of 55 million, it is safe to say that The Martian's blast off was a huge success.

Watch the trailer below and check out why.  In the meantime, you might want to stock up on your potato supply.  You'll get the reference after watching the film.



Z for Zachariah

IMG_1202 Right on the heels of his Oscar Nominated role in "12 Years A Slave", Chiwetel Ejiofor takes on a role that is fascinating to witness.

In "Z for Zachariah"  Loomis (Ejiofor) thinks he is the lone survivor in the midst of a disaster that wipes most of the human race.  However, its when Ann (Margot Robbie) stumbles upon him in the woods that both of their lives change.  If that weren't enough...Caleb (Chris Pine) finds Ann and Loomis - and that is when it starts to get a little interesting.

It's amazing how resourceful one can be when they need to.  Ann, who has been living without electricity for Lord knows how long, is beside herself when Loomis (a former scientists) uses water, a generator and a wheel made from wood as an conduit to run electricity to the house.

Based on a novel by Robert C. O'Brien and beautifully shot, the screenplay for this one feels a little thin, but these extraordinary actors make up for it.

It was refreshing to watch Pine and Robbie act without focusing on their external beauty.  Robbie was so stripped down, I almost didn't recognize her and found myself wondering who this newcomer was opposite this Oscar Pine and Ejiofor have that uncanny gift of saying more with their eyes than any dialogue that could be written or spoken.  I love that!!

Z for Zachariah opened in limited release on August 28th and is exclusively "on-demand" on Direct TV.