In the movie they docked to Endurance with the Ranger at about 68 RPM's. Once docked they retarded the spin by using thrusters which looked like it was from the Ranger. I can think of two scenarios:

  1. The Endurance had thrusters which fired when the Ranger docked. Which begs the question why not use wireless means to fire the retro thrusters instead of needing to dock?
  2. The retro thrusters were fired by the Ranger so that the physical connection to Endurance would also slow down as the Ranger slowed. But I find that hard to stomach because the sheering force on the docking port would be so great it would snap in two.

I was curious if there was anything further I was missing?


1 Answer 1


According to the film's official novelisation, Coop was indeed worried about the ship breaking up. Note that A) The reverse thrust was supplied solely by the Ranger and that B) It seems that Case was capable of judging the correct amount of retro-thrust to use:

Immediately Case reversed the direction of the thrust and their rotation began to slow. “Gen—gentle, Case,” Cooper muttered, half out of it.

Mann’s planet began rotating into view less frequently, just once every few seconds, until finally they were barely turning at all.

“Getting ready to pull us up,” Cooper said.

But it might already be too late. They were still falling, and Endurance was starting to burn in earnest, parts melting and sloughing off of her, becoming meteorites that streaked into the atmosphere

As to why they didn't use a wireless connection to get the ship to slow down;

  • There wasn't time;

Yet if this failed, it was all over. They were all dead. “Cooper,” Case said, “this is no time for caution.” Cooper felt a smile on his face. Right.

  • There's no indication that they actually have the ability to trigger the retros remotely in any case

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