Interstellar, while primarily being a science fiction film with jaw-dropping sights and set pieces, is a film about a series of important decisions. Dig a little deeper into the film's themes and events, and you'll see a core of seven questions that test the moral compasses of various characters in the film, all connecting together to the point where one false move would mean things wouldn't turn out the way that they ultimately did. Here now are the major moral events of Interstellar, and the decisions key cast members made (or could have made) during the film.
Needless to say, this feature is pretty much all spoilers for Christopher Nolan's Interstellar, so only proceed if you have seen the film and want to further analyze its content.
Should Humanity Rewrite Its History To Justify Its Current Societal Goals?Character: Society
Decision To Be Made: Should humanity choose a more agrarian future, or should it keep striving for technological progress in an uncertain time?
The Choice They Actually Make: In this bleak future where growing food seems more incredible of a prospect with each passing year, society on the whole has decided to turn its eyes away from the stars and embrace the theory that the moon landings were faked to bankrupt the Soviet Union. Access to higher education is limited, and an emphasis on "making farmers" is emphasized.
Consequence: Humanity effectively turns its back on higher technology, focusing on agricultural horizons instead of technological ones. This leads to NASA being forced underground, with Dr. Brand and his team focusing on the Lazarus missions, as well as the Endurance follow up. It also leads to the loss of Cooper's wife, as MRI technology could have saved her life.
The Alternative: If society didn't turn its back on technology and education, the Lazarus and Endurance missions might have had more support from the public. In which case, funding may have been more readily available, and whole colonies of people could have been sent out much earlier, instead of just smaller missions that were already operating on a ticking clock.