Spaceman Movie Explained: What’s Up With the Ending?

On March 1, the sci-fi drama film “Cosmonaut” starring Adam Sandler was released on Netflix. This is a film adaptation of the novel “The Astronaut from Bohemia” by Jaroslav Kalfarz, published in 2017. In the review below we look at how comedian Sandler handled the dramatic role this time and what shocks will await his character during a long space mission. And the main thing is whether they are worth the viewer’s attention.


Adam Sandler in a dramatic role is always interesting, although here there was a feeling that the actor had no room to develop to his fullest; quite cute interaction between the main character and the spider; high-quality technical component


the creators offer a completely meditative narrative, but in return do not reward the viewer with intelligible content; superficial truths are served with the sauce of almost revelation; the film is not able to evoke a sincere response from the audience; Carey Mulligan’s party is criminally small; very weak satirical component, basically like almost everything in this film

“Cosmonaut” / Spaceman

Genre sci-fi drama
Directed by Johan Renck
Starring: Adam Sandler, Carey Mulligan, Isabella Rossellini, Lena Olin, Paul Dano (voice)
Netflix premiere
Year of manufacture 2024
IMDb website

Sleep-deprived Czech cosmonaut with large bags under his eyes, Jakub Prochazka, has been on a solo space journey for 189 days. He has traveled 500 million kilometers to study the particles of the mysterious dust cloud called “Chopra”, which has been sparkling with a beautiful purple glow in the sky for four years and is gradually getting closer to his goal.

In addition to the fact that Yakubu has trouble sleeping and the toilet on the ship is not working properly, the lone traveler is concerned that his wife Lenka has not been in touch for quite some time. But soon these troubles fade into the background when the hero is horrified to discover an uninvited guest – an arachnid creature endowed with intelligence and the gift of speech.

However, Yakubu shouldn’t expect any showdowns in the style of “Alien”, because this alien, despite his slightly creepy appearance, turned out to be absolutely friendly. Moreover, he sincerely tries to help the astronaut rethink his values ​​and finally understand what is most important for him in this life. After working on HBO’s extremely successful Chernobyl, Swedish video director and film director Johan Renck took on the film adaptation of the science fiction novel The Astronaut from Bohemia,” which The Guardian columnist Tibor Fischer compared to Stanislaw Lem’s “Solaris.”

But no matter what complimentary epithets the book received from literary critics, its film adaptation turned out to be less controversial and inexpressive. Rank and, if you look at his modest filmography, the not very experienced screenwriter Colby Day try to pass off simple superficial truths as revelations, unsuccessfully disguising their clumsy brainchild as intellectual fiction.

The problem is that this completely boring and gloomy movie assumes a sincere response from the audience, but with such an apathetic narrative it is difficult to claim at least some emotions from the viewer.

The behavior of the main character does not evoke sympathy, but outright disrespect, given his attitude towards his pregnant wife. Yes, this behavior to a certain extent is rooted in Yakub’s childhood traumas, but they do not justify the extreme selfishness coupled with cowardice. The man is ready to travel almost to the edge of the solar system to escape responsibility.

Neither Sandler’s meaningful glances into the distance, nor his positions in the frame, which communicate the character’s internal depression, nor small metaphors, such as Prochazka’s constantly suspended state or his exercises on the simulator, which is essentially also an escape, but at the same time trampling on the place. All these hints and hints do not make the hero more interesting or worthy of empathy.

Genre and stylistically, “Cosmonaut” is easily read as a meditative chamber drama, supported by a sluggish sci-fi component. In terms of content, it resembles an hour and a half psychoanalysis session in space. Correction: very boring psychoanalysis session.

This is not the first time in recent years that Adam Sandler has strayed far from the usual image of a frivolous, funny guy (Uncut Gems, Breaking into the NBA) – here only the last name of his hero can pass for funny. Watching the actor’s mournful face for 100 minutes is such a pleasure. Sandler’s anemic performance was reminiscent of his character from the drama The Empty City (2007), and although it is due to Jakub’s depressed state, it does not evoke much admiration. The psychoanalyst spider with the voice of Paul Dano can hardly be called a full-fledged character, given how little information is available about they give it to him. The creature gives pseudo-philosophical interpretations of the slogan of the third “Matrix” (“Everything that has a beginning has an end”), and his irritable address to the astronaut “thin man” could easily turn into some kind of meme. It’s good that the authors were smart enough not to introduce Russian cosmonauts into the plot, which took place in the original novel.

“Cosmonaut” is definitely not intended to provide entertainment for the viewer, but neither interesting food for the mind nor a sincere emotional outburst can be found here. Only the endlessly sad eyes of the artist Sandler in super close-up, looking wearily at the unlikely passenger. The latter strives to be characterized by a line from a song by a famous performer: “havav in me right from the hand, training pavuk.”


“Cosmonaut” tries to maneuver between decent form and noteworthy content, and this is not bad, but in the end the film cannot fully realize itself as a high-quality dramatic story.

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