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Plot:

In LUCY IN THE SKY, Natalie Portman plays Lucy Cola, a strong woman whose determination and drive as an astronaut take her to space, where she’s deeply moved by the transcendent experience of seeing her life from afar. Back home as Lucy’s world suddenly feels too small, her connection with reality slowly unravels.

Also Known As: ルーシー・イン・ザ・スカイ, Lucy in the Sky, Pale Blue Dot, Люси в небесах, Lucy Dans Le Ciel, Pale Blue, Lucy dans le ciel

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  • viktor-iatsenko
    viktor iatsenko

    She did portrait well of how her mental affecting her life. The storyline was okay. Didn’t have any OMG moment.

  • haykaz-t-erzyan
    haykaz t erzyan

    Better than ice cream. Lucy Cola(Natalie Portman) was in outer space, the ultimate out-of-body experience. That’s god’s eye view of earth; she never got over it. Lucy in the kitchen could not hold a candle to “Lucy in the Sky”. How can anybody be expected to make dinner for three after being up there? So full of stars. Only so many ways to make meat loaf. What a letdown. Drew(Dan Stevens), the astronaut’s stalwart husband, over time, realizes that Lucy looks down on him; face to face, not from the apogee of extreme verticality. Lucy has less contempt for Iris(Pearl Amanda Dickson), her niece, probably because she doesn’t share the same DNA as her husband. Drew is just an ordinary guy. Lucy knew that when she married him. It’s not his fault that he spouts out banalties such as: “Babe, you went to space.” Drew is only a low-level NASA employee. Lucy is a rock star now. And rock stars want to hang out with other rock stars, not roadies. Mark Goodwin(John Hamm), her colleague from the same deep space mission, can relate with Lucy’s withdrawal pangs that an astronaut undergoes after the natural high of omnipotence. She falls for him so hard. Lucy Cola, a fictionalized Discovery astronaut, a mission specialist in robotics, can’t believe it when her second chance at happiness turns out to be a cad. Is there something going on between him and Erin(Zazie Beetz), the new recruit? Lucy breaks into Mark’s e-mail server. There is. The astronauts are headed to the Space…needle, according to Mark’s itinerary. Their rendezvous point is the Orlando International Airport. The stranger-than-fiction events leading up to Lucy’s unexpected intervention of the secret lovers is when the staid “Lucy in the Sky”, directed by Noah Hawley, kicks into overdrive. This film goes to 11.Charlie Kaufman(Nicholas Cage), as in real life, hates formulaic screenplays. This is the guy who wrote “Being John Malkovich”, Spike Jonze’s breakthrough 1999 film, and served double duty on “Synecdoche, New York”. But alas, writer’s block and an encroaching deadline can transform even a highly-principled iconoclast into a minion, so in desperation, he recruits Donald(also played by Nicholas Cage), his twin brother, who learned to be a hack by attending screenwriting seminars hosted by Hollywood industry professionals. The hard nut that Charlie has to crack is an adaptation of Susan Orlean’s “The Orchid Thief”, a non-fiction book ill-suited for the big screen. The story of John LaRoche(Chris Cooper), a horticulturist, and Susan Orlean, staff writer for “The New Yorker”, who documents his illegal poaching at a wildlife preserve, has no obvious plot points or character development. Jonze’s “Adaptation”(2003), and the adaptation within the real adaptation written by the actual Charlie Kaufman, has no ending, Hollywood or otherwise. The horticulturist and reporter never find the elusive White Ghost, the holy grail of orchids. To the disappointment of Valerie Thomas(Tilda Swinton), a representative from the studio, is handed a script in which the reporter/subject relationship, a professional one, is strictly abided by from both parties concerned. Being commercially-minded, she was hoping that a romance would blossom between the two main characters, starting with a “meet-cute”, like the one Charlie envisions between himself and the waitress at a cafe(Judy Greer), when he invites her to an orchid show. Charlie, however, insists that the story not be “artificially-plot-driven”. “The Orchid Thief”, as a screenplay, has no story arc, because Charlie wants to devote complete fidelity to the source material. “Why can’t there be a movie simply about flowers?” he asks, naively. There are. They’re called documentaries. And you can find them on public television. But the adaptation of Susan Orlean’s “The Orchid Thief” is a major studio project.Lucy Cola loved her grandmother. During her stolen moments with this hunky astronaut, talking shop and more on the flatbed of his truck, Nana(Ellen Burstyn) goes into cardiac arrest. She never received her husband’s desperate messages from her turned-off cell phone. Nana dies. That’s when the untethering, which started in earnest, begins to gain traction. She is free.”Lucy in the Lawyer’s Office”.The writing and filming of the screenplay are happening simultaneously; that’s the novelty of “Adaptation”. Following the advice of his hotshot agent, Marty Bowen(Ron Livingston), Charlie makes a call from NYC for Donald to join him in a brainstorming session. He wants his less-talented, but potentially more commercially successful brother(Donald just sold “The 3” for a cool 1.5 million) to read and, gulp, critique his first draft. After Donald finishes the script, and encourages his socially-inept brother to meet Susan, he goes online to check out John LaRoche’s sideline gig, a softcore **** site. And herein lies the moment in which, if the audience is paying attention, when Charlie’s brother hijacks the movie. He changes the trajectory of the narrative with his commercial instincts. Like any filmmaker or screenwriter, the artist uses creative license to suit the needs of his vision, even if it’s a hackneyed one. This is what “Adaptation” satirizes. Donald adds a little heat to “The Orchid Thief”. A large segment of the moviegoing public will allow this detour into the “theater of the absurd” pass them by without comment. The famous author, a well-respected journalist, is one of the webmaster’s topless models. With great expediency, the Kaufman brothers take a road trip to Florida. They learn that Susan indeed fell in love with the free-spirit adventurist, a plot point that would, no doubt, please the studio honchos. Donald, in essence, plays two characters, just like his older brother Charlie, inside and outside the diegesis; they’re both onscreen characters and omniscient writers. “Adaptation”, ultimately, is about how movies, once they’re green-lit, makes it to the screen; the compromises you make for focus groups. Charlie is the screenwriter. Donald goes uncredited. But he’s every bit as important as his older brother. This is how the younger Kaufman, the script doctor, fixes Charlie’s third act. Finding the ghost orchid advances the plot. That’s the major change Donald makes. Not finding the ghost orchid stops the movie dead in its tracks. John and Susan have no reason to stay together. The rewrite allows for a romance to blossom, like a ghost orchid. They hit the jackpot. The lovers on the lam shack up in their love nest after discovering hundreds of ghost orchids. The journalist/author, a card-carrying member of the NYC intellegentsia, improbably turns into a drug fiend, sniffing this green powder that the Seminole tribesmen learned to extract from the flower. As John and Susan canoodle on a ratty old couch, the horticulturist discovers the peeping tom at his window. It’s Susan’s call. The screenwriter must die. Charlie will write an expose on her secret life and adapt it for the screen. Oh, wait. That’s exactly what happened, and is happening, in real time. They head towards the swamp in separate vehicles. In Charlie’s car, the journalist holds a gun at the driver’s head. Donald Kaufman has turned “The Orchid Thief” into a taut psychological thriller. His older brother, an introvert, knows nothing about the human condition. Charlie would never that the lives of people could be this unpredictable; a well-adjusted woman, suddenly, become unhinged by circumstance.This is where “Lucy in the Sky” draws its influence from: Susan Orlean’s fictionalized character arc.Donald, on the other hand, understands that love can sometimes drive you insane. Opposites, do sometimes attract. It doesn’t happen only in the movies. Cut to the chase: LaRoche is ripped to shreds by hungry crocodiles in a misty swamp. Susan Orlean, the great Susan Orlean, inconsolable, holds her dead lover, screaming: “You fat ****!” at the man who adapted her book.Something unexpected and uncanny happens during the third act of “Lucy in the Sky”. Without warning, the film undergoes a dramatic shift in tone, bordering on the histrionic. The audience gets a rare chance of seeing a film, distributed by a major studio, turn inwards on itself; it’s like a movie within a movie: “Lucy in the Supermarket”. Iris can’t be in two places at the same time. Lucy’s niece, ultimately, makes the right choice, though, staying back in the car, where she can transfer the shotgun from the armrest console to her backpack. Meanwhile, the nonplussed checkout girl rings up duct tape, ropes, knives, insect repellent, and a blonde wig. Later, at the airport parking garage, policemen are alerted to the situation in progress and stop the jilted lover’s murder plot. Once again. Lucy finds herself looking over earth, but this time, it’s from a parking garage barrier, in which both gravity and the gravity of the moment(Mark loves Erin; the other woman, why! why! why!) could kill her.Robert McKee(Brian Cox) is right. Charlie Kaufman knows nothing about real life. At his seminar, the screenwriting guru shouts: “You can’t have a protagonist without desire! It doesn’t make any sense!” The film critics, a consensus, so quick to pan “Lucy in the Sky”, seems to have forgotten that, unlike the wild mood swings in “Adaptation”, this really happened.This isn’t meta; this is “true crime”.”Nothing happens in the real world? Are you out out of your…mind?” McKee asks Charlie rhetorically, with vitriol. He continues: “People find love. People lose it.”Lucy Cola loses it.

  • ambrasas-tomas
    ambrasas tomas

    I really wanted to like this Idek what happened in the end with the bees XD

  • ervand-owzankich-yan
    ervand owzankich yan

    A Deep Dark psychological ride. Based on true events, Natalie Portman stars as astronaut Lucy Cola who comes home from a Space Mission and sort of loses her mind from Jealousy. Check out the trailer. Natalie is well supported acting wise and bet her Costume Designer is up for some awards. Really cute outfits. Lucy also has an fascination with Butterflys and Bees, they are her go to when tripping out and light up the screen in close ups. If you happen to frequent the San Diego Intl Airport like me, you’ll get a surprise.

  • boris-flink
    boris flink

    Lucy In The Sky was supposed to be science fiction, and I was all set to watch some great special effects – instead all I got was a movie about sex. Sex and infidelity and not being a good wife and not being a good mother and not being a good daughter……and bees. Seriously, Noah Hawley should have done a ‘based upon a true story’ paint-by-the-numbers directorial debut instead of throwing facts away and creating a fantasy piece that everyone hated. Natalie Portman gives an outstanding performance but everyone else, including the great Jon Hamm, just phoned in their parts. Oh yes – Ellen Burstyn – ’nuff said.

  • elvia-francisco-javier-venegas
    elvia francisco javier venegas

    The movie contains all the reasons that you should watch . because of a wonderful appearance . But in fact it did not have any target . perspective empty shell story and meaningless but with good look .

  • dr-limon-acarkan-sener
    dr limon acarkan sener

    Okay watch nothing really that special or anything you haven’t seen before

  • jonathan-warner
    jonathan warner

    Profound and respectful portrayal of a person’s fall into obsession and dysfunction after completing the pinnacle achievement of her life’s pursuit only to lose purpose and meaning in everything else. Illustration of the psychological struggles and self destructive depths other historical champions might have endured such as George Eastman and Meriwether Lewis, not in the movie. Ms Portman’s swagger, cougar gait and neurotic episodes were performed perfectly. I couldn’t think of anything else while watching, which is the kind of movie experience I’m looking for.

  • bente-engen
    bente engen

    Natalie Portman is Outstanding in this film about a tightly-wound, super-achiever astronaut whose life flips on its end once she returns to earth from space. It’s based on a true story but it’s really an elegant psychological film that shows Lucy’s state of mind as it unravels. Critics are taking issue with the shifting aspect ratios in the film but I had no problem with it – it was an effect I have never seen used before in a film and although I didn’t love it (it did somewhat draw attention to itself) it pretty much worked. The cinematography overall reflected her state of mind and was elegant and ethereal. The supporting performances are also OUTSTANDING. Jon Hamm is terrific as the womanizing astronaut and Dan Stevens is unrecognizable as her clean-cut husband. The only character that’s a bit of a cypher is the niece, who seems a little lost in the movie and doesn’t really communicate any particular point of view. Is she upset about her aunt’s antics? We aren’t sure. The actress is a little too passive in the role I think and therefore the relationship between then doesn’t quite come off. But the other performances are really great. Overall, it’s a thoughtful film that wrestles with a woman’s humanness in the face of her own existential dilemma: do the rules I have been following all my life really mean anything? Have I been achieving my whole, becoming almost superhuman, only to to end up a regular old human after all, humbled by the cosmos. 7/10

  • dusan-balatinac
    dusan balatinac

    Hawley really creates a fascinating portrait of Lucy as a character. She is someone who is driven by self determination and spurned by the words of a grandmother who never lets her get comfortable. There just isn’t any failing in a single bone in her body. But she is given a life changing and mind altering experience and then put in a situation where her fate is taken out of her hands. It becomes a difficult situation for her to take and as she struggles with so much is just one of the things that causes her to spin out of control. But even within that Hawley is careful to always make sure that this is a thoughtful character study where you might not understand exactly what she is going through, but you can empathize with her since you are so attuned to her perspective. And Hawley gives you multiple points of view through the various characters were you can see her in many different lights. The difficulties that she puts people through as a husband who wants to love her but gets pushed away. A fellow astronaut who has gone through the same thing and can help us to understand what is happening to her. A niece who looks up to her and provides some perspective of her simply as a human being. There are many levels to the character. Like when she speaks a great deal of truth about the degrading idea of being an emotional woman, but while she is descending into madness and letting her emotion overcome her. Hawley allows her to be two things at once; a smart and capable woman who can do anything she sets her mind to and also being someone who is having an existential crisis so severe it is causing her to emotionally unravel. Natalie Portman is able to so believably inhibit the role of the high achieving character who you believe she can seemingly do anything. There is always that fire behind her eyes and you can constantly see the gears moving behind the eyes. But under all that there is someone who is becoming undone in ways that not even she can fully understand.Hawley also works so well to create really wonderful singular moments which work so well and say so much. Like when upon being delivered some tragic news Lucy floats all the way from her home to a hospital room. It all plays out shot from the waist up and she traverses great distance as nothing more than herself. Everyone around her is frozen and not moving and space warps as we see flashes of her surroundings as nothing more than a blur. All the while there is a slowed down cover of Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds that sounds much more spacey than the original. It is a wonderful moment of getting into the psyche of Lucy where nothing else around her seems to matter than getting to her objective. Hawley is so adept at creating a collage like that where he marries image, music and dialogue in a way that is visceral and feels alive. It transmits the emotional context of a scene quite perfectly. Although admittedly Hawley is probably too good at using that where his film can feel like more a combination of loosely connected scenes that doesn’t quite connect to be a wholy cohesive entity. The emotional instability helps give an explanation to why that it happening, but especially when you back away from it after watching it is a bit undeniable that it works better as parts rather than a whole. Some of it may be Hawley’s TV background where the episode structure forces an evolution to the story where he doesn’t on a whole have to focus on story structure. It also allows him to have more freedom to experiment within the space of episodes knowing if one goes over an audiences head he still has more shots to get his idea across. But I think when so many moments works so well and resonate emotionally and artistically in the long run it doesn’t matter.

  • mukesh-bhnddaarii
    mukesh bhnddaarii

    “Lucy In the Sky” (2019 release; 124 min.) brings the story of Lucy. As the movie opens, Lucy is doing a space walk near the International Space Station, where the Shuttle has brought the astronauts. Lucy is overwhelmed by the experience. Upon returning to earth, we get to know her husband who also works at NASA. It becomes clear very quickly that Lucy is having a hard time readjusting to life on earth, her husband calling it suffering from “rocketlag”.Meanwhile Lucy feels a special bond with Mark, who also has flown on the Space Shuttle… At this point we are 10 min. into the movie, but to tell you more of the plot would spoil your viewing experience, you’ll just have to see for yourself how it all plays out.Couple of comments: this is the first feature-length from debut director Noah Hawley, best known for his TV work including “Fargo”. Here he brings a story to the screen that is “Inspired by real events”, as we are informed at the beginning of the movie. Indeed, the story reminds of the real life story of astronaut Lisa Nowak, who did a space mission with the Shuttle in 2006 (can’t tell you more as it would spoil your viewing experience). Let’s be clear: “Lucy In the Sky” is NOT a space movie a la the recent “Ad Astra” or “Gravity” a few years ago. In fact, there are only a few scenes set in space, with a total screen time of about 5 minutes. The movie tells us what happens to Lucy AFTER she returns back to earth. In that sense, the movie’s marketing campaign and trailer is completely misleading, I’m sorry to say. Natalie Portman as Lucy does the best that she can in what is a challenging script, certainly in the movie’s first hour. If you wonder whether the movie contains the Beatles song “Lucy In the Sky With Diamonds”, it does (covered by Lisa Hannigan). I noticed in the end credits that Reece Witherspoon is one of the producers. One definitive positive is the movie’s original score, an orchestral instrumental composed by Jeff Russo, and one I plan on checking out further.”Lucy In the Sky” premiered to negative criticism at last month’s Toronto International Film Festival, and has remained under clouds ever since. After opening in a few cities last weekend, the movie rolled out to more cities this weekend, and opened on 3 screens for all of Greater Cincinnati (population: 2.5 million). The Sunday early evening screening where I saw this at here in Cincinnati turned out to be a private screening, as I was literally the only person in the theater. In short: this movie has bombed completely at the box office, and I can’t see it getting a much wider (or longer) theater run. I was aware of the negative reviews and criticisms going into the theater today, and hence my expectations were low, very low indeed. Hence I was pleasantly surprised that it wasn’t a complete disaster, and the 2 hours flew by pretty quickly. If you are interested in a flawed yet worthwhile character study (and then some), I’d suggest you check this out, be it in the theater (doubtful at this point), on VOD, or eventually on DVD/Blu-ray, and draw your own conclusion.

  • christopher-moreno
    christopher moreno

    Great actors doing what they were directed to do…but the story line was a bust. This could have gone in several meaningful AND entertaining directions but did not. Poor script writing. As is often said, if it ain’t on the page, it ain’t on the stage! Skip this one in spite of good photography and acting. This is a miss, not a hit.

  • aurora-camacho-amor
    aurora camacho amor

    First Hit: Lackluster and non-cohesive, the story had potential, but distractions and character jolts didn’t work.First off, when the actual picture on the screen kept changing the size, I thought, oh, we have a projection problem. Then I realized that the shifting from letterbox, to full screen, to square in the middle, square on each side of the screen, and wavy vertical edges was all part of the tricks Director Noah Hawley used to create the physical feeling of Astronaut Lucy Cola (Natalie Portman) was having because she felt disjointed and separate from world after having traveled in outer space.This is based on a true story about how Lucy got caught up in the ethereal feeling of being back on earth after having floated out in space for two weeks. It’s about how she struggled to get grounded after the experience and what happens when she loses focus.The story shows her slipping in and out of states of quiet estrangement from the world around her. At one moment she’s speaking with her husband Drew (Dan Stevens) in a usual kind of conversation and the next moment she’s got this dreamy, faraway look in her eyes all the while the picture format of the film is changing, sometimes abruptly other times in a smooth wiping fashion. We learn about Lucy’s background by Lucy’s visits with her grandmother Nana (Ellen Burstyn). Nana is strict and expects Lucy to be tough, not like her flaky brother, who cannot sit still long enough to raise his daughter Blue Iris (Pearl Amanda Dickson).Blue comes to stay with Drew and Lucy from time to time because it is the only stability and family she has. Her sadness and estrangement from her father are shown in one poignant scene when, after receiving a phone call from her dad, she goes into her room. She turns up the music loud and sits sulks on the floor. There are bits of scattered paper all round. Lucy goes in and reaches out to Blue and holds her, gives her space to try to put her life in perspective. The irony, of course, is that Lucy’s life is out of control, and she doesn’t know it, and she’s consoling Blue, whose life is shattered.Hoping to get back into space and have that sense of wonder and feeling all of life distantly, she begins working, studying, and training hard to be selected for the next mission. However, she’s missing appointments with a NASA psychologist and starts acting on impulses that are generally foreign for her. One such impulse is to begin an affair with fellow astronaut Mark Goodwin (Jon Hamm). Another is bowling with a select group of others who’ve been in space as her. Together they are an elite club and talk around the edges of their inner experience of being in outer space.Lucy is competitive and never loses, so when her fellow female astronaut Erin Eccles (Zazie Beetz) and who is competing with her for a seat on the next ride to space, sets a record for one of the tests, she’s determined to beat it. However, there is a mishap, and this is when she obviously starts to spin out of control.When she isn’t selected to be part of the next team to space and is told to take some time off, she flips an internal switch and sets out to right all the wrongs she thinks are being done to her by NASA and Goodwin.As I mentioned above, I thought the shift screen size projections were distracting and seemed like it was being used as a device to make us understand the character better. It doesn’t happen in real life like this, so the technique only set me farther away from the story.I also felt like the shifts made by Lucy was a bit inconsistent. However, her intensity of tracking down Mark and Erin in San Diego was fantastic. Watch her bark out orders to Blue like a head sergeant.Portman, at times, was fantastic. There’s a scene where we see just her face, and she smiles briefly, gives a look of being lost in a train of thought, upset, then smiles and on and on was Portman at her best. However, the script or direction had her inconsistent in such a way that the character was difficult to understand so overall it was one of her worst roles. Hamm did nothing new from his character in “Mad Men,” he drank to excess and screwed everyone. I would like to see if he can do something else. Beetz was excellent as rival astronaut Eccles. Stevens was outstanding as Lucy’s husband who always looked at the bright side of things. He was known at NASA as ever having a smile. Dickson was reliable as the lost girl who was looking for guidance and stability in her life. Burstyn was fantastic and one of the best parts of the film as the crusty hardened grandmother to Lucy. Brian C. Brown and Elliott DiGuiseppi wrote this story with revisions by both of them and Director Hawley. I’m not sure the story worked, but it was the direction by Hawley that led this film astray. Starting with the different projection shapes attempting to create a physical experience of Lucy’s adjustment issues. They were a distraction.Overall: This was a weak attempt to tell this story.

  • grethe-moe
    grethe moe

    Following on the foot steps of Joaquin Phoenix who stars in Joker and Rene Zellweger who stars in Judy comes Natalie Portman in another movie that feels like the lead is trying to win an Oscar. As a fan of NASA it’s a movie I’m glad I saw. It seems that their is a psychological break down that can happen to astronauts who have been to space and this is about one of them, a fictional story based on real events. As Lucy is a space walker freshly back on Earth who goes a little mad in her attempt to get back up there. I’m familiar with the withdrawal the chosen few get, when they see Earth in it’s entirely than have to come back to the planet, but this movie talks about how bad it can get. Watching this unfold on the silver screen is not as interesting as it sounds, despite how much great acting talent they have all over this thing. If the condition is real, the filmmakers spent way too much time being respectful of it rather than making a great movie. My only interest in the film is as someone who thinks being an astronaut is cool, but the movie is dull.

  • marijan-kumer
    marijan kumer

    Lucy in the sky is a first-time filmmaker’s work that definitely appears as if he’s got to prove something. Noah Hawley, the director, who comes from television and novels, is his first feature. The story is a real one “inspired by,” which captured the morbid fascination of the country.Many will probably remember the exploits of an astronaut driving almost non-stop about 900 miles, apparently planning to kill a fellow astronaut who had scorned her romantically. That was great news, if only because it was so strange.The detail that she might have worn adult diapers to make the trip with fewer stops- a detail denied by the astronaut- could have been considered admirably shrewd, if not for her intentions.This film is also strange, though not quite like the real-life story. Hawley, working with Brian C. Brown and Elliott DiGuiseppi from a screenplay he co-wrote, could be commended for avoiding an exploitative approach to this tale. On the other hand, the story of the film seems to be so far removed from what actually happened that exploitation seems almost impossible in certain and important respects.What we get instead is a character study of an astronaut who, having first-hand seen the great expanse of the universe (she must have excellent eyesight, considering that she is spending her only mission in space in orbit around Earth), is experiencing an existential crisis. The premise is intriguing from a philosophical perspective, although it is a bit stupid from a psychological level. With its trivial problems and monotonous routines, the everyday world must seem even more trivial and monotonous compared to the seemingly or indeed infinite.That’s Lucy Cola’s dilemma (Natalie Portman, who, despite everything else, is quite good). She was in space, and things seem quite boring when she returns to her husband Drew (Dan Stevens).Hawley has the screen shrink sideways to give us a sense of this and expand vertically from a widescreen frame to the Academy ratio boxy frame. He does this frequently and with even more extreme variations, at least twice going from the claustrophobic box to a super-wide panoramic view and once when Lucy moves around her house, the box image moves back and forth within the screen frame.The first time Hawley does it, we get the trick point. It just turns out to be trying too hard after the second or third time. By the end of the film, we begin to wonder if the filmmaker has lost a frame concept, let alone the visual trickery’s initial purpose.Anyway, while preparing for another space mission, Lucy ends up having an affair with Mark Goodwin (Jon Hamm), a fellow astronaut whom poor, nice-beyond reason Drew calls a “ladies ‘ man.” A workaholic who became so under the tutelage of her harsh and judgmental grandmother Nana (Ellen Burstyn), Lucy continues to be driven by the idea of going back to space. In the meantime, she becomes obsessed with Mark, who also seems to have eyes for Erin Eccles (Zazie Beetz) rookie astronaut-in-training.This is the plot. However, the story is about living inside the head of Lucy, which has to seem to Lucy about as dull and repetitive as the meager lives of people who have not been in the orbit of Earth. Maybe that’s why Hawley so often shifts the aspect ratio: something has to move with a main character that static.The screenplay mostly ignores Lucy’s state of mind’s philosophical dilemmas, except for characters to raise them as a way to hammer home because of the slow deterioration of Lucy’s mental state. That’s because the screenwriters really want us to buy into their psychoanalytic premise- that going into space can make a person go insane without question, to put it as bluntly as they do. The character has little else to explain her behaviour, except for her drive to be the best at all, which means nothing when the end goal is another trip to space and her ultimate breakdown comes when she is denied that chance.Due to the fact that Lucy has a companion on her road trip and her motive is not about jealousy, that climatic turn is considerably altered from the true story. It’s about getting back to a man who’s crushing her dream – apparently like so many men who aren’t in the real story.The filmmakers pull this idea out of the blue, perhaps to give some revisionist dignity to Lucy’s real-life inspiration in the sky. Whatever the reason, in a story that struggles to find any until then, it just feels like a desperate grasp of meaning.

  • joanne-searle
    joanne searle

    Greetings again from the darkness. ‘Space – the final frontier.’ Well, that wasn’t the case for real life astronaut Lisa Nowak. In 2007, Nowak made the national news for her cross-country, diaper-wearing road trip that ended with her being arrested in Orlando for attempted kidnapping. Nowak had been a Navy pilot and conducted spacewalks as an astronaut. She had been married and divorced from a NASA contractor, and the purpose of her long drive to Orlando was to kidnap the astronaut she had an affair with and the astronaut that she had been dumped for by that astronaut (the other one she was kidnapping). Noah Hawley’s feature film directorial debut is “inspired by true events”, and about the only thing missing is those diapers.OK, that’s not the only thing. Also missing are a coherent story, believable dialogue, a realistic Texas accent, a competent psychologist, and an inspiring story of girl power. Natalie Portman plays Lucy Cola, and the film opens with her being filled with awe during a spacewalk that will forever make life on Earth seem small … even while her dreadful accent (with San Angelo gun joke) tortures the ears of every viewer. Jon Hamm co-stars as astronaut Mark Goodwin, the “action-figure” prize in the eyes of Lucy. This despite Lucy’s cheery, stable and very grounded husband Drew (Dan Stevens), who works in NASA Public Relations. Playing the 4th wheel in what should have been two separate two-wheelers is astronaut Erin Eccles (an underutilized Zazie Beetz). Thankfully, Ellen Burstyn is around to inject some raunchy old woman humor and life lessons as Lucy’s Nana. For no apparent reason, other than possibly in hopes of attracting a younger audience, Pearl Amanda Dixon plays Iris, Lucy’s teenage niece. Iris spends most of the movie casting confused looks at her famous aunt, wondering why Nana told her to take any advice from Lucy.Noah Hawley is best known for his excellent TV work with “Fargo”, and here is credited as co-writer with Brian C Brown and Elliott DiGuiseppi. It’s the first feature film for all three and it shows. There are some interesting ideas and approaches, but most of the stylistic attempts are just too much: the non-stop shifting of aspect ratios, the by design blurring (out of focus) images, and the Malick-type edits early on, are all more distracting than artistic.There are some intriguing bits to Lucy’s character. She’s a woman in a field dominated by Type A men, and she matches or exceeds all in determination, grit and expertise. It’s only after she is “star struck” that she begins her descent into mental and emotional instability. As she loses herself, there is a scene where Hamm’s Goodwin is watching the Space Shuttle Challenger tragedy over and over. That scene probably offers more insight into being an astronaut than most anything we see from Lucy. As for the finale, it’s a rain-soaked mess, and perhaps drives home the point that the filmmakers were handcuffed by a true life story that was simply too bizarre to work as a movie … especially since they left out the diapers.

  • ilgi-benol-demir-bilgin
    ilgi benol demir bilgin

    This movie is just really painful. I wanted to walk out a few times. The story is just lame and a real mess. Portman does a decent job in the role… but the movie doesn’t know what it is or what to do with it’s actors. In the end I didn’t care at all about the characters and the story just didn’t’ go anywhere.Seemed like it might be interesting… but ended up being just a bit waste of time.

  • dr-k-voros-brigitta
    dr k voros brigitta

    Pretty disappointed in this one. While Natalie Portman’s performance is excellent, as is Jon Hamm’s, nothing could save this mess of ideas from itself.Lucy Cola comes back from space and can’t adjust to the smallness of her life. Her husband can’t understand. It seems like maybe Mark, a fellow astronaut who’s done more tours that she has, does, so Lucy begins an affair with him. But Lucy’s displacement is making it hard for her to stay grounded, per se, and she slowly delves into her own madness. There are side storylines about Lucy’s take-no-prisoners grandmother and how Lucy became as strong as she did, as well as Lucy’s teenaged niece, who is staying with them. But basically, the story is threadbare. It should have relied on strong characters. But nothing felt very authentic to me – not the emotions, not the way the characters reacted. For a film that seemed to be celebrating, or at least admiring Lucy’s strong work ethic in a man’s world, I felt that the filmmakers dove a little dangerously into archetypal female reactions at times.There were a few moments when the form follows function aspects of the filmmaking (letterboxing to widescreen, fisheye lens, background sound) worked very well, and more moments where it was completely incongruous to the story and felt like the filmmakers were just trying to make something artsy and cool (superimposing the moments over the stars, so cheesy; conveyor belt for hospital scene). In the end, the whole thing just didn’t hold together and the themes seemed muddled at best. Wish I’d liked this more.

  • bekbay-turk
    bekbay turk

    Deep character studies can make fantastic films if you have a great performance behind the character. Movies about post-traumatic stress can add a level of drama that a lot of films simply can’t. In the case of Lucy in the Sky, this is a film that deals with both for the entire duration. So, what went wrong here? This movie is proof that not every true story will make a worthwhile feature film. This is one of the worst films of the year.Following Lucy (Natalie Portman) as she arrives back on Earth after a mission in space, a combination of wishing to go back and not wanting the life she original had begins to take her over. Not only does could that set-up lend itself to a fascinating character study, but I would have preferred it to not be a true story. As I said, this story doesn’t have enough depth to lend itself to a full feature film. After setting up where this character has been and where she is now, Lucy in the Sky has nowhere to go.Natalie Portman is completely committed to this character and is easily the biggest saving grace of this film. On top of her great performance, there is a very unique way this film is presented. With aspect ration constantly changing throughout the film, it felt like a neat little experiment to have the shape of the screen feel like it was how Lucy was feeling in the moment. Sadly, both of these elements deserved a better film to be a part of. Never once I feel that this was a great character being explored, but rather just a great character, not being explored enough, placed in a terrible film.I could try to find positives in the fact that the space sequences are beautiful to look at in terms of visual effects, but those sequences end after the first five minutes. The addition of performers like Jon Hamm or Zazie Beetz should normally feel like an elevation, but they’re ultimately underused. The climax of this film felt like it should have taken place toward the middle of the movie, because it wasn’t all that exciting and like the rest of the movie, pretty much goes nowhere and makes you question what the point of this movie even was.I’m not one who usually bashed on a film, because I like to see the good in most movies, but it’s very difficult when a director like Noah Hawley, who I have loved on many television projects, chooses a poor first outing for his feature film debut. After watching this film at the Toronto International Film Festival, it became the first film that I’ve ever seen at a festival that I straight-up disliked. There are saving graces when it comes to Natalie Portman, the visual presentation, and even the direction by Noah Hawley, in terms of getting great performances out of everyone, but this is one of the weakest stories that I’ve seen on the big screen in years.