Midnight Sky (Netflix) Movie Review

Pillow Lover

Distinguished Member
I like “serious” science fiction. I suspect this was based on a very good story and I liked that part of it overall but it was a below average film with what I suspect as major elements very poorly handled eg.

The 2 crew members (effectively 50% of the remaining human population) just being allowed to travel back to Earth and die for no good reason - or reasons that were given nowhere near enough explanation and understanding.
 

VisionMan

Distinguished Member
Cas's review gave this thoughtful, steady, slow paced apocalyptic a 7.

I'm going to give it an 8. Why? Mainly because of George Clooney's performance, which is spectacular and the movie clearly displays what he is doing and why. Well it should do, he directed it as well.
There are connections all over the place on a very Human level and whilst the crew were very stiff (and written boringly) Iris turned not to be so.

I also liked/loved the way the movie didn't explain everything and had no intention of, either. Which made the story thoughtful and more open to debate and interpretation by the viewer than normal sci fi fare. So yes,

A solid 8
 
Last edited:

nylonsyorks

Active Member
Something of a 'genre' orientated movie. 2020 won't be remembered for a year of great movies but this would be remembered on it's own merit, thoroughly enjoyable movie.
Scores on the doors 8.2/10
 

GadgetObsessed

Well-known Member
A disappointing 5/10 for me.

It is hard to know what kind of film this was aiming to be - it is not sci-fi as anyone with even the remotest understanding of anything scientific - or just a basic understanding of logic - would find it laughable. (For example, an "unmapped" area of what would simply be empty space - or a habitable moon of Saturn only just having been discovered around 2050 and having fields of cultivated wheat.) There is an underlying metaphor that the man who spent his life looking for extra-terrestrial life missed the life going on right in front of him - but the subtlety of this is applied with a sledge hammer.

Emotionally the film was completely flat. There are some blatant "insert unnecessary jeopardy here" moments but these are so wildly unrealistic/non-sensical that I did not really care what happened or to whom. There are also a couple of "insert pathos here" moments - again for people I just did not care about.

It is not a rescue story either - which leads me on to the main weakness of the whole film, which is "What is the point of the story?"

Basically a man wants to warn a returning spacecraft that the Earth is now uninhabitable due to some unexplained (and unexplainable) apocalypse. However, this does not in any way save the crew. It only gives them a choice of whether they die on Earth, die in space or fly back and die on the colony as there is zero hope of such a crew surviving there. It is not as if they can re-start the human race there. (I assume that was intended as an Adam and Eve parallel - but it is not as if that works logically for restarting humanity.) Even if he had not warned them they would have noticed the issue well before they got home anyway and faced exactly the same choice. So it really does not matter if he warns them or not, or what they choose to do about it as the result is always the same - everybody dies.

There is a minor moment of surprise at the end but given that it makes no difference to anything else it did not matter and felt unearned.
 

scrowe

Distinguished Member
Enjoyable, albeit I knew exactly what was happening from the get-go, zero surprise at the end. For me it’s worth a 7/10 because they went all in and actually spent some decent money on the space scenes and Arctic scenes, so that and Clooney raised it a level.
 

GT One

Active Member
A disappointing 5/10 for me.

It is hard to know what kind of film this was aiming to be - it is not sci-fi as anyone with even the remotest understanding of anything scientific - or just a basic understanding of logic - would find it laughable. (For example, an "unmapped" area of what would simply be empty space - or a habitable moon of Saturn only just having been discovered around 2050 and having fields of cultivated wheat.) There is an underlying metaphor that the man who spent his life looking for extra-terrestrial life missed the life going on right in front of him - but the subtlety of this is applied with a sledge hammer.

Emotionally the film was completely flat. There are some blatant "insert unnecessary jeopardy here" moments but these are so wildly unrealistic/non-sensical that I did not really care what happened or to whom. There are also a couple of "insert pathos here" moments - again for people I just did not care about.

It is not a rescue story either - which leads me on to the main weakness of the whole film, which is "What is the point of the story?"

Basically a man wants to warn a returning spacecraft that the Earth is now uninhabitable due to some unexplained (and unexplainable) apocalypse. However, this does not in any way save the crew. It only gives them a choice of whether they die on Earth, die in space or fly back and die on the colony as there is zero hope of such a crew surviving there. It is not as if they can re-start the human race there. (I assume that was intended as an Adam and Eve parallel - but it is not as if that works logically for restarting humanity.) Even if he had not warned them they would have noticed the issue well before they got home anyway and faced exactly the same choice. So it really does not matter if he warns them or not, or what they choose to do about it as the result is always the same - everybody dies.

There is a minor moment of surprise at the end but given that it makes no difference to anything else it did not matter and felt unearned.
Interesting review, but if I understood correctly the 'poison' was radioactive as it spread across the Earth, so unless there was a war numbers of survivors would still be underground, as I believe Clooney's Dr Augustine character hinted at during the early part of the film.
The probability is that the crew of the returning spacecraft would have been in full knowledge of Earths situation as the computer systems would have kept the data, also some form of escape plan would have already been initiated on Earth if a habitable planet was identified, the mission to save humanity would have been bigger and more far reaching as a multi-national venture than just sending one space vessel on a single two way mission with only a small crew aboard.
Obviously Mr Clooney's character would not be the star role with so many extra characters butting in to save humanity, taking away his acting moment of glory, instead the movie has used a lot of conjecture and a lot of CGI production glitter to distract viewers from thinking too hard about the many plot holes in Midnight Sky's screenplay.
 

GadgetObsessed

Well-known Member
Interesting review, but if I understood correctly the 'poison' was radioactive as it spread across the Earth, so unless there was a war numbers of survivors would still be underground, as I believe Clooney's Dr Augustine character hinted at during the early part of the film.
The probability is that the crew of the returning spacecraft would have been in full knowledge of Earths situation as the computer systems would have kept the data, also some form of escape plan would have already been initiated on Earth if a habitable planet was identified, the mission to save humanity would have been bigger and more far reaching as a multi-national venture than just sending one space vessel on a single two way mission with only a small crew aboard.
Obviously Mr Clooney's character would not be the star role with so many extra characters butting in to save humanity, taking away his acting moment of glory, instead the movie has used a lot of conjecture and a lot of CGI production glitter to distract viewers from thinking too hard about the many plot holes in Midnight Sky's screenplay.
Exactly.

The film opens some time after the "Event" with multiple helicopters picking up the huge Arctic team to take them all home to die. That seems a bit strange as some of them are families with children. Surely someone would have wanted to stay in the Arctic with their family for at least a better chance of survival. Also even some weeks after the "Event" there are still enough resources available for the military to mount a large scale "rescue" mission. They would have been better off putting effort in getting people to the new colony and telling the existing spacecraft to stay there some time sooner.

Some decisions for the plot made sense. For example, having the girl be mute. If she was not then she would have had to ask questions that made the plot holes even more glaringly obvious. That character could also not be allowed to write for the same reason. Obviously if someone is mute and they had a paper and pencil they would choose to communicate their name by drawing something rather than just writing it down.
 

VisionMan

Distinguished Member
Some decisions for the plot made sense. For example, having the girl be mute. If she was not then she would have had to ask questions that made the plot holes even more glaringly obvious. That character could also not be allowed to write for the same reason. Obviously if someone is mute and they had a paper and pencil they would choose to communicate their name by drawing something rather than just writing it down.

Oh dear... @GadgetObsessed,

Sorry you didn't like it. For me, it had an emotional impact. Especially in these dark times.

Plot holes? Yes, but don't they all?
 

GT One

Active Member
Oh dear... @GadgetObsessed,

Sorry you didn't like it. For me, it had an emotional impact. Especially in these dark times.

Plot holes? Yes, but don't they all?
As sci-fi films go Midnight Sky was watchable and an above average production, anyone who has checked out some of those terrible budget sci-fi offerings on Amazon Prime will know what I mean, but when you choose to make a complex plot about a massive apocalyptic event into a limited scope film it can look self indulgent, especially for the main actor(s) who by default become the main focus of visual drama on the screen.
In my opinion Armageddon was probably the classic sci-fi movie for self indulgence with Bruce Willis at his alpha male peak and Ben Affleck and Liv Tyler beginning their star status careers as actors, the story became secondary to these actors as they dominated scenes on screen.
George Clooney acquired the rights to Good Morning, Midnight to make this film, it's interesting that the author Lily Brooks-Dalton explained that one of her inspirations for the book was the difference how males and females felt guilt over the abandonment of their children, this kind of explains the true creative thread influencing this film.
 

GadgetObsessed

Well-known Member
Oh dear... @GadgetObsessed,

Sorry you didn't like it. For me, it had an emotional impact. Especially in these dark times.

Plot holes? Yes, but don't they all?
My disappointment was not so much due to plot holes as the illogical plotting and ultimately the pointlessness of it all - it makes zero difference if he warns the ship or not. The crew may as well all come home and die on Earth - they have no hope of survival by going back to the newly discovered moon anyway.

If you can switch your logical brain off (e.g. a habitable moon having just been discovered around Saturn, an "unmapped" area of space, etc.) and admire the scenery though it was OK - and George is always good to watch.

I don't really see why the current situation gives this film any more emotional impact?
 

wolfie138

Member
thought this was crap. suspected the "twist" regarding the little girl as soon as she appeared but they did the usual lame trick to try and misdirect that. and that ice floe bit was as retarded as the outside swim bit of Abyss.
 

rustyk21

Active Member
I watched this last night and shoot me down but I think it's probably the worst film I've seen for years.
Complete waste of money and talent.
2/10

It's just another stupid holywood does sci-fi film, with a few emotional twists.
All the ideas are borrowed.
The science is terrible.
Most of the action sequences are illogical, contrived and lack tension.
The characters are unoriginal.
The plot makes no sense.

Nice special effects, but covering a turd with glitter doesn't make it edible.
 

johnny-17

Active Member
Dull as dishwater, as seems to be the way with Science Fiction movies these days,

Suggest something cataclysmic happens
Don’t explain it fully
Ensure that the characters don’t ask obvious questions
Have long moody silences between what little dialogue there is
Ensure that the characters are happy with the lack of answers
Throw in a few pretty special effects, possibly from another movie
Make the pace as slow as possible
Let the audience fill in all the blanks (again)

I know less is more and it’s all very intelligent and thought provoking etc, but this new way of story telling isn’t new anymore
 

steviedr

Distinguished Member
Wasn’t bad, Clooney great as always, some nice visual shots, liked the slow pacing, a few of the cast really underused, end predictable but a solid 7/10
 

wolfie138

Member
I watched this last night and shoot me down but I think it's probably the worst film I've seen for years.
Complete waste of money and talent.
2/10

It's just another stupid holywood does sci-fi film, with a few emotional twists.
All the ideas are borrowed.
The science is terrible.
Most of the action sequences are illogical, contrived and lack tension.
The characters are unoriginal.
The plot makes no sense.

Nice special effects, but covering a turd with glitter doesn't make it edible.
i don't think doing anything to a turd would make it edible, unless that's your thing X-(
 

Garrett

Moderator
Nice special effects, but covering a turd with glitter doesn't make it edible.
i don't think doing anything to a turd would make it edible, unless that's your thing X-(

aaa eating poop.jpg
 

Fillumgeek

Well-known Member
Thought it was a laborious misfire however true fact...

Ethan Peck who plays Clooney as a young man is Gregory Peck's grandson.
 

MartinH32

Well-known Member
Have to say I loved this. Although who complain about the science and then watch Star Trek - then yes, it's SciFi. I did feel it lost it's way a little in the middle, but Clooney was fabulous, the concept great. Probably one of the best things Netflix have made! 8/10
 

The latest video from AVForums

65-inch LG C1 Review coming soon to AVForums
Subscribe to our YouTube channel

Full fat HDMI teeshirts

Support AVForums with Patreon

Top Bottom