Science fiction has often gone beyond Earth, but Moon takes a more mundane view of outer space. The movie also focuses almost exclusively on one actor and manages to explore some intriguing areas.

It's some time in the future and humanity has finally found a source of clean energy: Helium-3, found in irradiated parts of Earth's moon. Sam Bell (Sam Rockwell) is up on a base in the moon, launching the Helium-3 back to Earth and performing maintenance on the machines. Sam is two weeks away from finishing his three-year contract to be there, and his only companion is GERTY (voiced by Kevin Smith), an emotionless robot whose "face" is a series of changing smiley faces. Contact with Earth is cut off, and Sam survives by viewing recorded messages from his wife and their young daughter. Sam also seems to be hallucinating.

After an accident with a lunar vehicle on the moon's surface Sam awakens in the medical bay on the base. He resumes work as normal, until he goes out to repair the vehicle -- and finds something that makes Sam question everything about himself, his assignment, and his future.

Moon is a thoughtful movie, focusing on the plight of its protagonist and the impact of technology on people. Director Duncan Jones manages to keep the almost-static situation on the moon from being boring (as well as turning an approaching rescue into a "ticking clock" of danger), and Sam Rockwell turns in another fine performance as a man whose job is like a prison sentence, and with the end in sight everything changes. Even GERTY is something of an enigma, helpful one moment and evasive the next. Moon may not be exciting, but it's certainly interesting.

Overall Grade: B+

Reviewed by James Lynch

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