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Films made from novels are usually great in my opinion. I think screenwriting a story without a famous novel behind it may be fading by convention. “The Martian” is one of those hip cool novel-to-movie examples.
I read the first few chapters before seeing the movie. The understated humor and NASA space themes drew me in right away. That and the universal praise of the critics put seeing this one at a high priority. “Star Wars” proved a global love for space movies. “Castaway” did the same for survival films. It’s likely “The Martian” draws from both audiences along with readers of the novel. It’s already being given “Blockbuster” status in the press. In the story, a manned mission to Mars goes wrong and an astronaut, thought to be dead, is left behind. He uses his ingenuity and tenacity to survive. The movie is well over 2 hours and I wasn’t bored once. I give this one a perfect 10/10.
from The Damien Riley Podcast of Movie Reviews https://thedamienrileypodcast.com/ep-100-the-martian/