So recently we started watching Ad Astra, a science fiction movie in which Tommy Lee Jones has gone from Space Cowboy to (maybe) Space Loony when, 30 years after his exploration ship vanishes*, powerful electromagnetic surges emanating from its last known location begin threatening to annihilate human civilization. So what do you do when you have a great big movie star who has gone missing? You send an even bigger movie star after him, of course.
Me: “Do you know who that is?”
Wife: “He looks familiar, but I don’t know his name. He’s some big famous movie star.”
Me: “Do you only know he’s a movie star because I asked if you recognize him?”
Wife: “Well, he’s on TV, so he must be famous. Plus he just looks like a movie star.”
Me: “That is Brad Pitt.”
Wife: “Oh. Yeah, I’ve heard of him.”
Yes, yes indeed, he does just look like a movie star. And, incidentally, in this movie, he’s not the only other big star to be sent after the missing big star.
Me: “How about him? Do you recognize him?”
Wife: “He looks familiar, but I don’t know his name.”
Me: “That is Donald Sutherland. Kiefer’s father. You may remember him as President Snow from The Hunger Games.”**
Wife: “Uh, I don’t think so.”
So, just to recap: My wife did not recognize Brad Pitt, but she did recognize Donald Sutherland, even though she knew Brad Pitt’s name but not Donald Sutherland’s. I’m not sure which one of those two can put that in their pipe and smoke it. Maybe both?
Anyway, Ad Astra put my wife to sleep in about 15 minutes, maybe less, probably because, at least at the beginning, it mostly just consisted of people talking about other people being going to or being lost in space, which is even more boring apparently than watching people actually going into space.
Whether or not it’s as boring as watching someone jump from one platform to another platform in space just before each one explodes*** remains, for now, an unanswered question.
* In case you were wondering, his missing ship is NOT the Event Horizon. As far as I know. I haven’t actually finished watching it yet, either.
** Coincidentally, another member of the team in Space Cowboys.
*** My wife’s not-inaccurate characterization of the film Gravity.