A true labor of love for Brit Marling and Mike Cahill, Another Earth shines bright in the vast universe of film making. A tale of both redemption and sacrifice, this mind-blowing premise centers on Rhoda Williams, a talented student who makes a devastating mistake on the night she is accepted into MIT's astrophysics program.
She is sent to jail for four years for her crime and takes a job as a high school janitor upon release, instead of realizing her MIT dreams. In an attempt to redeem herself, she meets John Burroughs, a talented composer who is going through life-altering struggles of his own.
Unable to face up to her regrets, Rhoda and John get to know one another on false pretenses and develop a special relationship based on their similar circumstances.
Rhoda also enters into a contest to visit "Another Earth," an eerily similar planet that has appeared close to the one we inhabit. She longs to find out what is up there and what another version of herself would be like. Would she have made the same mistakes?
The story centers on something far bigger than what we experience in our everyday life and encourages people to look up at the night sky to question our own existence, and power to truly choose our destiny.
Director Mike Cahill's first feature film asks the questions: Is there another you out there? How would another version of yourself be different? What would you say to that person? Look out for a mind-blowing conclusion that will have you thinking and wondering for days.
The relationship between Rhoda (Brit Marling) and John (William Mapother) begs those exact questions on a very micro-level. Can you just forget the past and look to the future for who you are? In an ambitious first attempt, Cahill merges a very high level concept and the idea of an alternate universe with a very ordinary and organic look at love.
Marling and Mapother create an authentic relationship between two people going though very different, yet similar stuggles. They form a bond through time and circumstance that never comes across as forced or unbelievable.
This uber indie film has the style and elegance of a large-budget Hollywood blockbuster - that's a testament to the talent and passion of producer/writers Marling and Cahill, and their small crew.
Marling absolutely shines as Rhoda in her feature film debut and her small labor of love should lead to a lot of open doors in Hollywood, if she should choose, both for her writing and acting skills.
It's hard to pinpoint the exact genre of this film. If you're interested in sci-fi, drama, romance, redemption, or self-discovery stories - you will find every single one of those wrapped up in this incredible package that is Another Earth.