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(Review originally written at 2 October 2005)

"Mission to Mars" is far from a good movie but it's hard to say what it is that makes this movie a not so good one. It probably is due to the incoherent feeling of the movie. Most of the scene's and moments don't really feel connected and the movie feels like several separate scene's, simply glued together. The movie does has some good and powerful moments but because of the incoherent feeling of the scene's all together, the movie never truly works out as it was supposed to and the ending leaves a bad aftertaste.

The movie has some truly excellent actors in it; Gary Sinise, Don Cheadle, Connie Nielsen, Tim Robbins, Armin Mueller-Stahl. Those are some big names! Every actor does really well in this movie and gives a truly excellent performance.

The movie is professionally made. The movie is visually good looking and has some nicely looking special effects in it, even though they are a bit over-the-top at times. The are some typical trademark Brian De Palma tense moments in the movie but even those moments don't work out fully an 100%. De Palma fans will be disappointed.

Ennio Morricone delivers a really great musical score for this movie. It's both dramatic and heroic and is truly a pleasure to listen to. It sounds strange but I think that Morricone is really underrated as an artist. Most people will only know him for his Western score's but Morricone has really delivered some memorable and under-appreciated score's in his lifetime such as; "The Mission", "In the Line of Fire", "The Untouchables" and many more. "Mission to Mars" is another of his under-appreciated score's. It truly is a soundtrack worth owning.

From a technical point of view there is little wrong with the movie but it is the incoherent storytelling that makes "Mission to Mars" a failed mission. The scene's don't always feel connected and also the ending can't be called entirely satisfying. Also story-wise the movie doesn't always make completely sense and there are some implausibilities at times. Still fans of the science-fiction genre will find some joy in this movie.

It really isn't a THAT bad movie and at times it also is a really entertaining one. It's just that the bad story and storytelling completely ruin all the movie its potential. It's still a watchable movie but I simply can not recommend it wholeheartedly.

5/10

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About Frank Veenstra

Watches movies...writes about them...and that's it for now.
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