#REVIEW: “THE SPACE BETWEEN US”
Born on Mars with his existence kept a secret, Gardner Elliot (Asa Butterfield) lives his life looking to fill many empty gaps after his mother, astronaut Sarah Elliot (Janet Montgomery), dies tragically giving birth to him. Befriending online a Colorado girl named Tulsa (Britt Robertson), Gardner makes it a goal of getting to earth to find his surviving birthfather and also Tulsa. Diagnosed with a life-threatening condition which would see Gardner having to return back to Mars to survive, we wonder what will happen of his journey to connect with his father and his relationship with Tulsa in the face of his mortality.
One part Young Adult-Romance, one part E.T., The Space Between Us is carried by the phenomenal work by the Film’s star, Butterfield, who possesses a charming naiveté, eager to learn the ways of the world in which he has been kept-from his whole life. Robertson continues to show much promise as a rising star and gives the audience plenty to like as a hardened teen girl who has done the rounds through the foster care system. While we want so much to feel that connection between our two leads, we cannot help but feel something is amiss as their love never gets a fair chance to flourish on-screen amidst the fast-paced plane-flying, car-hijacking antics these teens get themselves into. We never fully suspend our disbelief and hence, struggle to be won over.
Gugino is fully-committed as Gardner‘s mother figure Kendra and delivers some fine work. While we adore Gary Oldman, who plays mission mastermind Nathaniel Shepherd who endlessly is in pursuit of a fleeting Gardner, we cannot help but feel he hopelessly is miscast with a heavy, brooding intensity which detracts that much-needed lightness tonally this story of young love truly needs. That being said, The Space Between Us contains several beautiful moments thanks to the trained eye of Cinematographer Barry Peterson (We’re the Millers, Sisters) and while we might forget much of what we saw here, some visually spectacular moments will not be forgotten.
VVS Films release THE SPACE BETWEEN US Friday, February 3, 2017.