The secret to living on Mars, if Mark Watney in “The Martian” is any example, is a smart-arse attitude and killer survival instincts.
That kind of main character makes for a really entertaining story, but those same characteristics are helpful for a real-life astronaut to possess, and they could mean the difference between life and death on a trip to Mars.
The movie adaptation for the best-selling sci-fi novel comes out on Oct. 2, and the second trailer makes it look like the film is keeping Watney’s joking, but brilliant nature intact.
Between that and science-heavy plot, the movie looks like it’s shaping up to be an accurate portrayal of what it will take for real astronauts to survive on Mars.
I’ve already written about the first trailer for “The Martian.” Matt Damon, who plays Watney in the movie, says he’s going to have to “science the shit out of this,” if he wants to survive on Mars.
That attention to scientific detail and accuracy is what made the novel so popular in the first place, and it looks like the movie is keeping it as an integral part of the story. That’s why science enthusiasts and space nerds are so excited for this film.
Now the second trailer reveals that Watney’s character in the movie is staying true to the book too.
Real astronauts have to pass an extensive psychological evaluation by NASA. They need to be adaptable, optimistic, able to take things in stride, and a killer survival drive in case something goes wrong. Watney has all of these characteristics, and we’re going to see how they all come together to keep him alive.
In the story, Watney’s crew is forced to leave him behind on Mars when a violent dust storm blows through. They think Watney died during the storm.
We get a sense of Watney’s joking optimism right away.
“But I’m still alive … Surprise!” Watney says in the trailer with a cheeky smile:
But to stay alive Watney has to find a way to survive four years stranded alone on an inhospitable planet, while living in a hab that’s designed to only last 31 days.
So when you’re 50 million miles away from home, and you’re the only person on the planet, what do you spend your time thinking about?
Well if we consider Watney’s isolation training before he left for Mars, then we can conclude he’s probably thinking about the hard questions that keep you up at night: like, “How come Aquaman can control whales? Whales are mammals — it doesn’t even make sense.”
And he keeps himself busy on Mars by making jokes, like declaring that he’s the best botanist on the planet (ba dum tss):
Watney also has a serious survival drive — a characteristic that is highly valued in real astronauts in case something goes wrong during space travel where help is millions of miles away.
“At some point everything is gonna go south on you, and you’re gonna say ‘This is it. This is how I end,'” Watney says in the trailer. “And you can either accept that, or you can get to work.”
Watney gets to work. And he never stops fighting to make it home.
You can watch the full video below:
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