There aren’t too many Spanish language science fiction movies, so Netflix’s Orbiter 9 stands out as an unusual movie from the start. It is set on a dying, condemned Earth and focuses a project to get the next generation of humans to safe harbor on an identified Goldilocks world that will take around 40 years to reach. As part of the project, Helena is a young child who is left alone on a colony ship after the oxygen systems begin to fail and her parents decide that leaving will give her the best chance of survival and extend the timeframe of breathable air by several years. When an engineer finally reaches the ship to repair those systems, Helena is a grown woman than is yet to meet a single human other than her parents.

The suspiciously good-looking Alex arrives aboard the ship with a seeming nonchalance towards the similarly good-looking Helena. What unfolds is much more interesting than an isolation-centered space romance (see: Passengers), and instead goes places the viewer probably wouldn’t expect. Unfortunately it does begin to run out of ideas in the third act, but thankfully doesn’t outstay its welcome and unlike a great number of movies in the genre also delivers meaningful closure to the story in the final chapter.

Orbiter9 is unlikely to stay in the mind more than a few days after watching it, and most of its themes have been explored by other films before (400 days, Moon), but it’s a perfectly serviceable and well-executed sci fi that doesn’t get too much wrong along the way.

Orbiter 9
Convincing aesthetic and effectsInteresting enough ideasWell-paced plot
Wooden acting styleUnrealistic villainNot especially original
6Does the job