Duncan Jones' modest science fiction takes its cues from the likes of Silent Running and Blade Runner; the inherent humanism in these films is very much a part of Jones' vision. Similarly, Kubrick's 2001: A Space Odyssey is another influence on Moon's decidedly retro design and the urbane sounding computer GERTY, voiced with deadpan precision by Kevin Spacey.
The film's premise of humankind's quest to colonise space originated when Jones read renowned astronautical engineer Robert Zubrin's book Entering Space. Not unlike Silent Running, Moon uses this concept as the basis to explore the ethical ramifications of private corporations extending their influence beyond our earth.
Sam Rockwell stars as a lone mine worker contracted by Lunar Industries to extract the moon's rich energy source, Helium-3, which has become earth's primary energy supply, thus opening the film up to a wider context about earth's tentative environmental future.