If I’m completely honest, I wasn’t expecting a huge amount from this. Don’t get me wrong, I wanted to watch it but I wasn’t sure if it’d be my cup of tea and I’ve got to say I was pleasantly surprised.
I listened to an interview with the film’s director, Jeff Nichols, and even he struggled to explain what the movie was about. He did mention that it was more of a father & son story than sci-fi and I couldn’t agree more.
The basis of the movie is that a father (Michael Shannon) and son (Jaeden Lieberher) are on the run from the government as well as a religious cult because the child has mysterious, supernatural powers.
I like that the film isn’t heavily revolved around showing us what the boys powers are, obviously we do see them in action, but it’s more a case of shielding them from the world. As previously mentioned, it’s about a father protecting his son and willing to do anything (as you’d expect from a dad) to make sure he comes to no harm.
Michael Shannon as the father, Roy, was fantastic. He was a cold, hard, beaten looking man but you could really see the love and also fear he had for his son. This is Shannon’s bread and butter and he smashes it out of the park.
Alton, played by Jaeden Lieberher, is the boy with the mystery powers and I liked him in this. I don’t think it will be the most difficult performances of his career but I think it could of been one that other child stars would’ve made it irritating to watch, which Jaeden certainly didn’t do.
Joel Edgerton played Lucas, a friend of Roy who travels with them on their journey. I found his character strange but in a good way. Lucas doesn’t really know what is so special about Alton but he doesn’t question it, he helps in any way that he can.
Kirsten Dunst was the mother of Alton, Sarah, and one of my favourite Dunst performances. It was an emotional part from her and it was beautiful to watch. What could have been said in dialogue, she done it with just a look and you knew exactly what she was saying.
Kylo Ren himself, Adam Driver, makes an appearance as Paul, an NSA analyst who is trying to figure out what Alton is all about. This is another solid performance from Driver and his character gives us a bit of comic relief as his stock just keeps on rising.
Some of the scenery and special effects (notably the ending) is fascinating and definitely leaves you wanting to find out more and to question some of the reasoning behind events. I don’t think we’ll ever find out these answers and I think that’s exactly what Jeff Nichols wanted. Any film that gets you thinking, talking and cause a difference of opinion is a plus in my book.
Now, I’ve never done a rating before but that’s all about to change and will, from now on, be giving each film (old and new) my rating out of 5 and an overall conclusion. Basically the same as always, but a little number added as a helpful guide for you lovely lot and to give you an indication as to what I think of the film in case my blabbering makes no sense.
So Midnight Special gets a 3 out of 5. I think it is best to go in knowing about as much as I’ve described to you. It was a gripping film and one that certainly created lots of talking points but it’s a film that I’d personally never watch again. It’s not one of those that, if I was looking for a film to watch at home, I’d go “Oh, lets watch Midnight Special again”, I’ve seen it, embraced it, enjoyed it, now I’ll move on.
Thanks for reading.