Surprise us once and we wait for the film. Surprise us multiple times and you better be Ridley Scott returning to your favourite genre with an A-list cast headlined by Matt Damon as a scientist lost in space.
As the second trailer of The Martian lands (after a superb poster and a superlative first trailer), the anticipation is sky-high for the film which is based on Andy Weir's beloved bestseller. The Martian is about astronaut-botanist Mark Watney (Damon), who is stranded on Mars after an accident injures him and forces his crew to evacuate the planet presuming him dead.
Watney is left to fend for himself in an exceptionally deadly environment, coming up with plans to grow food on a lifeless planet and make water till (or if) NASA scrambles together a rescue mission to save him. While we have already watched a part of this footage in the first trailer, what really gets you is the spirit of optimism that pervades it.
For a man who is left on a lifeless planet and the next rescue is years away, Watney holds on to hope. As he laconically remarks in the trailer, "Now, you can either accept that, or you can get to work." It is this never-say-die spirit, the basic tenet of space exploration, which encompassed Weir's book and is very much a part of Scott's film.
Damon puts it in words in the trailer, "No matter what happens, tell the world, tell my family, that I never stopped fighting to make it home." NASA, meanwhile, has its own questions to answer - to save or not to save the Martian. By sending a crew back to the red planet, it is risking the life of six astronauts to rescue one. The space organisation shoots down the idea and it is left to the six members of the crew to decide how important a human life is.
The trailer asks some important questions: What is the cost of a human life? If an astronaut is stranded in space after understanding the risks involved in space travel, whose responsibility is it finally?
There are enough comedic moments in the trailer to give us a break from the white-knuckled intensity. After Watney manages to grow crops on Mars where he is stranded alone, he remarks, "I am the greatest botanist on this planet." Also watch out for Chiwetel Ejiofor's lol moment.
Written by Drew Goddard, The Martian also stars Kristen Wiig, Jeff Daniels, Michael Pena, Kate Mara, Sean Bean, Sebastian Stan and Daniel Glover. The film releases on October 2.