Christopher Nolan’s Interstellar is finally here, and though many in the audience are finding it wanting in certain areas, there’s no denying that the portions in space are truly, utterly breathtaking. But his film is not the only movie to ever take audiences beyond the Earth’s atmosphere and into the depths of space, far from it. The journey to the stars and beyond is a well-worn, time-honored tradition in film, as you can see in this awesome supercut of cinematic space travel.
Called “Reach for the Stars,” which admittedly sounds like a motivational video or a mid-1980s Star Search knock off, this compilation comes from over at Fandango. It collects space footage from 20 movies, some you expect—it’s a bit Interstellar heavy, and the Star Trek franchise is well represented—and others that you would never guess. I had no idea that they went to space in The Nutty Professor 2.
Here’s the complete list of movies this footage is culled from:
2001: A Space Odyssey
A Trip to The Moon (1902)
Nutty Professor 2
Star Trek: The Motion Picture
Star Trek: Wrath of Khan
Star Trek 3: The Search for Spock
Star Trek 5, Star Trek: Generations
Star Trek: First Contact
Star Trek: Nemesis
The Last Days on Mars
The Right Stuff
Tree of Life
You might also notice some glaring omissions, like a complete lack of Star Wars, anything from the Alien universe, and countless others (where’s WALL-E?). I guess there are so damn many space movies you could make video that is practically endless, so it makes sense to cut it off at some point. Still, there are some favorites that just didn’t make the cut apparently.
And even missing some pieces we’d like to see, this is an impressive video. It’s edited together well, and even has a definite arc and an emotional component that you might not initially expect from a video like this. It’s not just highlights, there is a grander narrative scheme at work. There’s tension and triumph and all kinds of feelings. Then it takes a sharp tonal turn part way through that’s rather ingenious, adding a whole other layer to the proceedings, illustrating all of the various things that can go wrong while hurtling through space. All in all, not bad for a three-and-a-half-minute video cobbled together from bits and pieces of other movies.
I still can’t pick out the Nutty Professor 2 footage, though.