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The Space Between Us            review Bobby Blakey

There are movies that come along that you just don’t know what to think about. When I saw the trailer for The Space Between Us I was conflicted on what I really thought about the story they were trying to tell. With a great cast including Asa Butterfield, Gary Oldman, Carla Gugino, and BD Wong could this film offer up something out of this world or will it fail to get past the atmosphere?

The Space Between Us follows a space shuttle that embarks on the first mission to colonize Mars, only to discover after takeoff that one of the astronauts is pregnant. Shortly after landing, she dies from complications while giving birth to the first human born on the red planet - never revealing who the father is. Thus begins the extraordinary life of Gardner Elliot - an inquisitive, highly intelligent boy who reaches the age of 16 having only met 14 people in his very unconventional upbringing. While searching for clues about his father, and the home planet he's never known, Gardner begins an online friendship with a street smart girl in Colorado named Tulsa. When he finally gets a chance to go to Earth, he's eager to experience all of the wonders he could only read about on Mars - from the most simple to the extraordinary. I honestly expected to pretty bored with this film, but while it does miss the mark it could have made it isn’t the disaster I expected.

The initial story here is pretty interesting and could have really been a cool engaging sci-fi tale, but it fell into that clichéd Hollywood teen area that makes feel more like everything else. What does help the film is the great cast that is good here and elevates the story to something more than it might have been otherwise. Once he arrives to Earth the film is really hit and miss, with a decent E.T. like on the run premise that works but a romance side that feels pretty clunky. Where things really fell apart for me was the solution to it all and the believability of it all.

Sure the story itself is something you have to keep an open mind to really buy into it, but there is an element of interest with the birth from a colony on another planet and how it could affect people. This is one of those films that I think you will either really like or dislike depending on what you think you are going to get out of it. It was better than I thought but still not something that completely worked for me so watch it and decide for yourself.

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