Matthew McConaughey has been our favorite redemption story since 2011, when he sprung back on the scene with the slow-burn thriller, The Lincoln Lawyer and then followed that up with a performance in Killer Joe that's still burned into our brains. He's continued turning in great work in unexpected places (Mud, Dallas Buyers Club), and that includes his recent TV work on HBO's True Detective.
The actor's run could soon include major awards; should that happen, unlike most others McConaughey won't have to worry about the dreaded post-awards slump: when fall 2014 hits and the Oscars and Emmys are done, he will be in pretty safe hands headlining Christopher Nolan's new sci-fi movie, Interstellar.
Like any Chris Nolan production, details on Interstellar have been pretty mysterious, and plenty scarce; not even the film's teaser trailer was all that informative. Beyond an enigmatic voice-over from McConaughey explaining the movie's thematic center, all we really even kind of know about Interstellar is that it will use the scientific theory of Einstein-Rosen bridges (aka "wormholes") to tell the story of explorers who traverse further into the cosmos than ever before, presumably to find fertile land to replace the failing ecosystems of earth's altered climate.
McConaughey spoke to Variety about the upswing in his career, and like all actors who gain access to a Nolan production, he was extremely frugal with what he would say about Interstellar's plot, opting more toward selling Nolan's filmmaking prowess and ambition:
Here’s what I can tell you. It’s the most ambitious thing he’s ever done. And he’s done some ambitious stuff.
He came up to me and said, ‘“Mud.” I love that movie.’ [Later] I sat down with him for about 2½ hours at his house. Not one word came up about “Interstellar.” I walked out not sure what to think. I mean, he’s not a guy who takes general meetings.
There’s no f***ing around on set. He’s a great problem solver. In that way, he’s very indie. Here’s a guy who could have whatever budget he wants — and we finished shooting early.
Aside from the details regarding Interstellar's plot - which, for once, I'm very happy NOT knowing in advanced - this film is actually an intriguing pairing happening at a pivotal time.
McConaughey, as stated, is in the prime stride of his acting career right now - primarily because he shied away from big headlining movie roles and/or blockbuster projects. Nolan is just coming off of a major franchise roller coaster (Dark Knight Trilogy) and is getting back into projects spun purely out of the Nolan Brothers imagination machine (basically his version of an "indie"). Are director and star meeting at that perfect middleground to deliver a grand blockbuster spectacle with the mind and soul of a classic sci-fi indie?
There are so many examples of how sci-fi and artistic cinema blend together into some great movie experiences (from 2001 to Gravity, and counting...). With Nolan, McConaughey, a cast that includes Jessica Chastain (Zero Dark Thirty), Anne Hathaway (Dark Knight Rises), Wes Bentley (American Beauty), Casey Affleck (Out of the Furnace), Michael Caine (TDKR), John Lithgow, Ellen Burtstyn and more - this could definitely be a contender for greatness.
...Now bring on those jaw-dropping visuals!
Interstellar will be in theaters on November 7, 2014.