Surely falling in love is easy when you’re in space looking down on the earth in ‘Moonshot’
In the not-too-distant future, (2049 to be exact), space travel has been achieved and Mars has been colonised by a billionaire. It has become a fantasy destination for many. As expected though, the pleasures of this beautiful new worldly experience are only available to a privileged few. Those considered intellectually superior and those who can afford the extortionate price.
Moonshot is directed by Christopher Winterbauer and stars Cole Sprouse and Lana Condor as Walt and Sophie, two teens trying to get to Mars to meet their other halves. Sophie’s long term boyfriend Calvin is already working on Mars with his friends and family and is waiting on her to join them there. Even though she can afford the trip, she is apprehensive about flying so has delayed making the trip.
Walt on the other hand is very unpopular with his peers, some might go as far as to call him ‘annoying’. His only friend to speak of is the robot who manages the coffee shop where he works, who constantly threatens to fire him. He is completely obsessed with Mars and the idea of being able to start again or reinvent himself on a different planet. So, he dreams of one day making it up there for his new beginning.
He shares a kiss with a mystery girl called Ginny (Emily Rudd) the night before she is due to leave for Mars. This is when Walt decides his dream girl Ginny and planet Mars are his true destiny and he devises a plan to sneak onboard and stow away on the next shuttle leaving. It’s here he meets Sophie and the begin their out of this world adventure.
Moonshot doesn’t attempt to be taxing or complex. It’s a traditional rom com with many of the same or similar tropes we have come to love from the genre with a slight twist. It’s not a spoiler to say you expect the leads to end up together in a romantic comedy. The question is whether we care about the characters and their journey there.
In this case, Cole Sprouse (Walt) and Lana Condor (Sophie) are likeable enough, playing a mismatched odd couple who eventually fall for each other. Sophie playing the no nonsense intellect with a solid 5yr life plan and Walt, the haphazard playful boy who never has a plan but always lands on his feet somehow.
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The futuristic Sci-fi setting does add something nice to the usual rom com mix but it’s not a prominent feature of the story. The near future robots are well integrated but not what you would call advanced. The tech is not fancy but slightly more advanced than we currently have. The film being set just 30yrs from now means they didn’t have to go over the top with human advancements. The biggest change is the ability to travel between planets.
Moonshot is a sweet love story with a message about not just finding true love but also not having to leave where you are to find yourself. The cast and characters are fun and the conclusion, while predictable is pleasing enough. It’s not innovative or breaking any new ground but as teen rom coms go, it’s one of the nicer ones.
Moonshot is available now on Sky Cinema in the UK and HBO Max in the US