Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Book and movie review: The Martian by Andy Weir

Today i watched the movie The Martian, directed by Ridley Scott with screenplay by Drew Goddard, who had done the book justice in being quite close to it. I first read the book and then watched the movie.

Now about the book, Ares III mission to Mars is abruptly ended and crew is asked by NASA to evacuate due to dust storms and one crew member, Mark Watney, is believed to be killed by debris. Upon waking up, Mark finds himself alone on the barren planet with just a few months of food and water supplies. In order to be rescued by the Ares IV mission, Mark needs to survive 4 years on the planet. So the industrious botanist does not lose hope and works out his survival plan and executes on it. The story is told through the logs that Mark created. He eventually gets rescued after 18 months of stay on Mars.

After having read the book i wondered how they have adapted the book to its cinematic form. Some of the scenes are nicely shot, especially the climax where Mark (played by Matt Damon) is rescued and he flies like iron man to safety. The character of Vincent Kapoor was called Venkat Kapoor in the book. I was hoping to see some Indian actor (like Kal Penn) to have played this character. It is understandable that not everything in the book can make it in the movie - like Mark Watney on his way to Schiaparelli crater where on his way he is faced with the storm and how he circumvents it. Apart from that and some other minor details, the movie was quite close to the book.

Andy Weir, the author has answered some questions on the book here. There are some more q&a on the book here.

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15 sorting algorithms visualized in 5 minutes, with awesome arcade sounds

15 sorting algorithms visualized in 5 minutes, with awesome arcade sounds from r/programming