In the wake of a tragic car accident that claims the lives of to two people, the very night a second Earth is spotted in our solar system, a young girl who had everything going for her is left with nothing until she tries to make amends with the husband who's wife and son's deaths are her fault.
I remember catching the trailer for ANOTHER EARTH and feeling a bit intrigued, as the thought of well, another Earth (though unlikely) is still pretty damn cool. That said, the idea behind this film can summed up quite easily by saying this is a tragic and very depressing story about a girl and an accident that destroys a family whilst a cool and provocative idea is lingering in the background. The problem however, is that this film should have focussed upon this very cool idea, using the accident as the catalyst for sure, but keeping it in the background rather than building the story so closely around it.
Brit Marling's character Rhoda is a mess. I can't even imagine going from being one of the youngest people accepted to MIT to being a school janitor. The scene where she runs into a dude from school and he asks where she's working and what she's up to is brutally awkward and made me want to jump off a bridge, so I can only imagine what was going through her mind. Of course, it was no more awkward than the relationship between Rhoda and John, the father from the accident. I dug the idea of her wanting to make things right by him, even apologise at some point when she got the nerve, but I'm not so sure I dig where the relationship goes or what it blossoms into.
Not to seem like I'm being nitpicky but the few times they do try to explain Earth 2 make no real sense on a scientific level. First, how the hell does another planet Earth just randomly pop up in our solar system and then invade our atmosphere like that without causing any sort of chaotic imbalances? I mean seriously, this thing looks like it's going to hit us and nobody saw it coming before it was a blue light in the sky? Now I'm no astrology major, but I thought all planets in our solar system revolve around the sun on very specific axis, and I can't help but think that another planet would throw it off, causing all sorts of trouble (remember in BRUCE ALMIGHTY when Bruce pulled the moon in closer for a romantic view causing disasters around the world? That's how close Earth 2 seems to be, yet everything is fine).
ANOTHER EARTH sparks the imagination with talk of a second Earth like it's a parallel universe, but only enough to make us hungry rather than satisfy our appetites. The story is far too depressing, even when it's trying not to be. I loved the idea of winning a trip to EARTH 2, and that our main character had a shot at a second chance, but again, none of this makes any sense within the realm of reason. The media and radio are making this new Earth out to be potentially dangerous, yet the first contact team won't be military...they'll be a rag-tag lottery group? Also, people are at home watching the "first contact" via footage on TV as it happens? I don't think so. There's no way in hell the government would have that footage rolling live for audiences at home to view, it just wouldn't happen. There was definitely potential here, it was just never truly realized or properly thought out.