Review: THE MIDNIGHT SKY Doesn’t Offer Much As A Sci-Fi Or A Drama

Published by Shah Shahid on

George Clooney’s recent directorial after a long time leaves a lot to be desired. The Netflix original, The Midnight Sky, is a science fiction drama set in a post-apocalyptic world, kind of. The movie starts right before the ‘apocalypse’ part of the story kicks off. It’s a doom and gloom story that doesn’t really live to up any of the things it’s supposed to be. And this is all despite the fact that Clooney directed the movie pretty well. So check out my mostly Spoiler-free The Midnight Sky review. 

The Midnight Sky Review Based On A Book

The Midnight Sky’s story comes from the best selling book from author Lily Brooks-Dalton. Now, I haven’t read the book, so I can’t comment on the liberties or closeness to the source material. But the Netflix original movie is very lacking in, well, basically everything. The story starts as a mass evacuation is happening of all major populated areas. For whatever reason, the world is full of radiation and is no longer habitable for humans. But the problems started much earlier than expected resulting in the current state of the world. There’s an implication that the world ended earlier than anyone thought it was going to. 

The story of The Midnight Sky starts with Clooneys’ Dr. Lofthouse refusing to leave a science station in the Arctic somewhere. We find out he has a terminal disease, so he’s going to stay back to warn any active exploration expeditions currently still in space. Of which, there is one. That one ship is on its way back to Earth, unaware of the current situation. So Lofthouse is staying behind to warn them. That’s… basically the story. Nothing else really happens other than that. 

Clooney’s Newest Directorial Is Slow and Uninspired

During his time alone in the, now evacuated station, Lofthouse finds a young girl left behind. He has to now get ready to warn the remaining ship while trying to survive the harsh conditions of the frozen wasteland, with this little girl in tow. The parallel story running with his is that of the ship in space. And this is where the all-star cast appears. The cast of characters on the ship are David Oyelowo, Kyle Chandler, Felicity Jones and others. Unfortunately, despite these big names, there’s not much for anyone to do here in this story.

The ship’s story is all about trying to return to Earth, only to realize they can’t, thanks to Lofthouse’s warning. And then they, a few Spoilers now, turn back around, going back to the colony they left behind on Jupiter’s moon. And that’s really it. Even the execution of the story is wanting. There’s an ending reveal that you can see coming from from the first scene. Which makes the final reveal very anti-climactic and waters down its impact. 

The Midnight Sky Is Pretty Well Directed, I Guess

The only positive aspect of The Midnight Sky is its direction. The movie looks great and has an atmosphere that’s different than most movies in this genre and of this premise. Clooney is able to utilize the actors in satisfying performances, with the brief scenes and little material that they have. Honestly, there’s just nothing in the story to make the movie worthwhile. The visuals and sound mixing don’t make up for the fact that there’s absolutely nothing happening. It’s not gripping, engaging or otherwise interesting. It’s one of Clooney’s movies that you can definitely skip. 

The Midnight Sky is now streaming on Netflix. 

Did you find anything redeeming about The Midnight Sky? Feel free to correct me in the comments below, or on Twitter @theshahshahid

Featured image via Netflix. 

Shah Shahid

Entertainment Writer | Film & TV Critic | Bollywood Blogger | Host of Split Screen Podcast | Proud Geek Girl Dad


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