Mission to Mars
What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that MISSION TO MARS is a 2000 Brian DePalma-directed sci-fi movie about a team of astronauts in the year 2020 who land on Mars and make a profound discovery. Characters are in peril and there are a number of tense moments and several deaths. Early in the film, one of the astronaut's is blown into pieces by a violent sandstorm. A later death scene in space might be too emotionally intense for some viewers. There is also some consumerism: M&M's, Dr. Pepper, and Kawasaki products are prominently displayed in important scenes.
What's the story?
MISSION TO MARS takes place in 2020. Don Cheadle plays an astronaut who leads a team to Mars to investigate the possibility of colonization. When a huge tunnel-like dust storm kills the rest of the team and communication with the space station is cut off, four of his colleages, played by Tim Robbins, Jerry O'Connell, Gary Sinese, and Connie Nielson, go on a rescue mission.
Is it any good?
Director Brian DePalma is known for movies that have two qualities -- striking visual flair and frustrating narrative incoherence. If you are the kind of person who talks about the plot after seeing a movie, this is not your kind of movie. But if you would enjoy seeing an old-time Flash Gordon-style movie with 21st Century special effects and computer graphics, you just might want to see it twice.
The movie makes Close Encounters of the Third Kind seem like rocket science. It even makes The Day the Earth Stood Still look like rocket science. But the pictures are pretty.
Families can talk about...
Families can talk about the choices made by the characters, including one who commits suicide to save the lives of others, and about the prospects of space exploration and colonization. And it is worth pointing out to kids who watch today that they are the same age as the characters in the movie, who would have been children back in the year 2000. Point out the brief home movie footage showing two of the characters circa 2000, around 11 years old, and already dreaming of going to Mars, and ask kids what their dreams are, and help them think about what they will need in order to get there.
Science fiction movies and novels have long been fascinated with the planet Mars. What are some other examples of movies and books set on Mars? Why do you think Mars arouses such curiosity and speculation?
What similarities do you see to other science fiction movies, most notably "2001?"
|Theatrical release date:||March 10, 2000|
|DVD release date:||June 4, 2002|
|Cast:||Don Cheadle, Gary Sinise, Tim Robbins|
|Director:||Brian De Palma|
|Studio:||Walt Disney Pictures|
|Topics:||Adventures, Robots, Space and aliens|
|Run time:||114 minutes|
|MPAA explanation:||sci-fi violence and mild language|