EUROPA REPORT makes a nice companion piece to GRAVITY. Made for considerably less money, it still delivers a quality film about the inherent risk of space travel.
Cleverly using documentary and found footage, the film weaves a tale of the first manned trip to Jupiter’s moon Europa where the possibility of life is quite conceivable, especially after a probe discovers an underground ocean beneath the hostile surface.
The mission consists of a mixed bag of astronauts representing different countries. Familiar faces include DISTRICT 9’s Sharlto Copley and MISSION IMPOSSIBLE: GHOST PROTOCOL’s baddie, Michael Nyqvist. Taking place mainly in the confines of the spaceship as it travels to Europa, the sci-fi thriller has a very cinema vérité feel.
Not knowing anything about the film (I hadn’t even seen a trailer), I was quite surprised at how quickly I was absorbed by it. At 90min. it doesn’t waste anytime and pulls you right into the mystery and excitement. I was immediately hooked and greatly impressed by the film’s premise and the style.
The production design is excellent as well as the Special FX. This movie proves my point that if you craft a story that can be shot on a limited budget, it can still look like a high-budget studio film. Add some great acting and you’ve got something special like EUROPA REPORT.
I can’t recommend this movie enough. My only misgiving about the movie is the ending. And that’s not because it’s bad, it’s because I don’t know exactly how to feel about it which is unusual. I feel like it works and that it’s earned, but there’s also a sinking feeling in my gut that it went one step too far. You’ll see what I mean when you watch it. Trust me, EUROPA REPORT is a journey worth taking.