I.S.S. captures the idea of conflict between Russia and USA in space thriller

“The war on Earth will be decided in space”
Photo courtesy of Bleeker Street.
Photo courtesy of Bleeker Street.

“Tensions flare in the near future aboard the International Space Station when a worldwide conflict breaks out on Earth. Soon, the U.S. and Russian astronauts each receive orders from the ground: take control of the station by any means necessary.” These are the words used by IMDB to describe the newest addition to a long-living collection of space-themed movies, “I.S.S..”
ISS is the abbreviation for the International Space Station, a space station built after the Cold War as a shared station between the US and Russia. The space station is also the namesake for LD Entertainment’s 2024 film, “I.S.S.,” a suspense thriller set in space aboard the ISS. It is easily one of the year’s best thrillers and possibly the best in the last year.
Viewers are introduced very quickly to the characters in the movie, and it wastes no time developing correct foreshadowing and minor tensions between the characters. However, the film does pick up pretty fast, and the idea of “taking control of the station by any means necessary” quickly becomes the center of attention. The movie has an R rating, which feels too critical as the film shows hardly any blood or gore and has only moderate swearing throughout.
Hollywood has been falling behind in the film world, especially in the suspense and thriller genres. Suspense movies of the last few years have needed more quality in the parts where it matters. Things like complex characters, proper foreshadowing, ominous music, and fitting camera angles are all crucial factors in making or breaking a suspenseful movie. All of these components together create a truly haunting atmosphere, creating an uneasy feeling in viewers. That’s what I.S.S. does so well. It captures the attention of the viewer and makes them feel the suspense.
Director Gabriela Cowperthwaite does a great job taking a topic that looms over the world daily. She doesn’t make the movie about the war in progress on Earth but about the tension and conflict onboard a ship floating 254 miles out of Earth’s orbit, which only contains Americans and Russians. I.S.S., while short, has a bittersweet ending that utterly shocks the viewer—walking out of the theater after this film has an uneasy feeling of uncertainty. Lasting suspense and expert cinematography, backed by an incredibly creative and chilling score, give this movie enough power to call shots in the big leagues alongside movie franchises like the MCU. “I.S.S.” is, without a doubt, a 4/5 film.

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