Film and action summary
Midnight Sky takes place in the distant future of 2049. The post-apocalyptic story follows Augustine Lofthouse, an isolated Arctic scientist suffering from an incurable disease, as he desperately runs to Dr. Iris Sally Sullivan and her fellow astronauts to prevent a mysterious global catastrophe.
Short film about the midnight sky
Below you will find an overview of the spoilers.
The year 2049. The cataclysm destroyed most life forms on Earth with powerful radiation. The survivors either retreated underground, waiting for the radiation to stop, or retreated towards the poles, where the radiation slowly moved. Scientist Augustine Lofthouse (George Clooney) is volunteering to stay on an Arctic base while the last of the base workers and family members are evacuated to an underground bunker. Augustin suffers from a serious illness that requires daily dialysis, so he thinks he can’t survive for long, no matter what. Augustine wants to stay in contact with the returning spaceship and inform them of the situation on earth, so they can change course to the inhabitable moon K-23 near Jupiter. Augustine keeps trying to make contact with the ships, but her antenna is too weak for her signal to reach them.
Thirty years ago, Augustine (Ethan Peck) was an ambitious scientist who was busy discovering habitable planets where mankind could expand. One evening, at a gala, he meets Jean Sullivan (Sophie Rundle) and they start a love affair. After the fear of being pregnant, Jean leaves Augustine because of her obsession with work. A few years later, Augustine meets Jean by chance and learns that they have a daughter. Augustine, however, prefers not to show up when he gets the chance.
In 2049 the Aether spacecraft is about to return to Earth from Jupiter with the K-23 discovered by Augustine. The crew is unaware of the disaster on Earth. The captain of the crew is Commander Adewole (David Oyelowo), who is having an affair with one of his crew members, Sally (Felicity Jones), who is pregnant with the child they are sharing. The rest of the crew consists of Maya flight engineer Tiffany Boone, pilot Tom Mitchell (Kyle Chandler) and flight specialist Sanchez (Damian Bichir). The crew is worried about the lack of communication with Earth, but nevertheless continues to carry out its mission.
Back on earth Augustin finds a young girl (Caoilin Springall) at the station who doesn’t speak. Augustine suspects that she has been abandoned by the people who left the station and he tries to call them to come and get her, but he cannot reach them and suspects they are dead. She communicates through her drawings, and Augustine learns that her name is Iris. After a while Augustine fell in love with Iris and eventually they went to another base in the Arctic, hoping that the antenna would be powerful enough to communicate with Æther. During their journey Augustin loses his dialysis machine and is condemned to death. Once at the base he managed to make short contact with Aether before the spaceship was hit by a meteor shower.
In Aether the meteor shower damaged the radar and communication systems and made them deaf and blind. To repair the ship, Sally, Adewole and Maya spend a space walk to repair damaged systems. They repair the radar and communication systems, but are in the middle of the second meteorite impact when it hits the ship. Maya is injured in the meteor shower and despite Sanchez’s efforts to save her, she dies shortly after in the airlock. Sally meets Augustine who tells the remaining crew of the Aether that the earth is uninhabitable and that they have to return to K-23 to start a new life.
Tom gets a late message from his wife (Miriam Shore) that his two sons are sick and need to be evacuated to an underground bunker. Tom decides he’s not going back to K-23, but taking one of the escape pods back to Earth to find his family. Sanchez, who saw Maya as the second daughter, decides to accompany Tom to earth to bury her body. They returned to Earth while Sully and Adewall set course for K-23.
Sally has one last interaction with Augustine. She thanks him for his plans to return to K-23 and to inspire her to join NASA. Sally informs Augustine that her mother’s name is Jean Sullivan and that her full name is Dr. Iris Sullivan. Augustine realizes that Sally is in fact the daughter he had thirty years ago with Jean. Augustine also realizes that the young Iris who is at his base is only a hallucination. Before he loses contact with her, Augustine tells Sally that he is proud to have finally met her and asks her to describe K-23 to him. Augustine then succumbed to illness and radiation. Sully and Adewall set course for K-23 to revive mankind.
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