Director: Alfonso Cuaron
Two astronauts (Sandra Bullock and George Clooney) struggle to remain alive after an incident leaves them stranded in space with zero radio communication with earth. And I thought I had a bad day! Sheesh!
What can I say about GRAVITY that hasn’t already been gunned out? With a 98% fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes thus far, it’s shaping up to be the best reviewed film of all time, if it’s not already. Although I didn’t find it to be flawless like many out there, I can’t deny that it took my breath away. Cue in the Berlin song! Tum, tum, tum - tum, tum!
Gravity was a straightforward yet mucho riveting thriller that muscled up the first key element that any compelling story should have. You have a hero, give him (or her, or it) an end goal and toss obstacles their way as they attempt to achieve it. And Gravity so doubled down on that jive it wasn't even funny! Sure there was a moving back-story and character arc tagged to Sandra Bullock’s character, one that came with a dash of spirituality and the theme of “rebirth”, but at the end of the neck snap, this was a lean and no frills survival thriller first, one driven by action and spectacle and yes it packed a serious case of the wallops!
To say that I was on the edge of the edge of the edge of my seat on this watch (so basically I was sitting on the floor) would be an underestimation. Clocking this movie was akin to being on a space themed roller-coaster ride with no seat belt on! I tensed up like a junkie ODing many o times here and if I go by the finger-knives claw marks on my forearm my date left behind, I wasn’t the only one. What elevated Gravity higher than its simple plot line was most definitely the stellar execution of the space/action sequences. When James Cameron spat out in the press that this puppy was "The best space film ever done" he wasn’t playing. The visuals here were simply awe-inspiring! I was floored by the countless shots of earth from an orbiting position in space, the gorgeous sunset, the wide shots of infinite space…simply wow. Yup, my balls dropped to the floor, big thanks to the theatre usher that helped me pick them back up after the screening.
The bulk of the eye candy was conveyed via CGI and I got to commend them for a job expertly done as it was fairly seamless. I bought it wholesale! Moreover, the camera work pitched in to make this an unforgettable big screen experience. Backed up by Ace DP Emmanuel Lubezki (Children of Men, Tree of Life), Gravity went out of its way to make me feel as if I was in the cosmos getting my ass whooped around. The camera spun wildly, often echoing the astronauts getting rocked in space and in a sly move, Cueron went the video game first-person way, putting us in the shoes of the astronauts, from inside their helmets, as they jumped here, ducked there or tried to hang on to SOMETHING for dear life. HALO came to mind a couple of times for some reason - don't ask. Add to all that a fearless and stirring performance by Sandra Bullock (if I know Hollywood, she’ll get an Oscar nomination for this one), a once again charismatic turn by George Clooney basically playing George Clooney but with a helmet (great role), a novel use of silence (there is no sound in space) and an evocative and tear jerking score by Steven Price (one that I will acquire) and you get an immersive, rousing and visually arresting sit down!
Any drawbacks? A couple but nothing to toss children in a wood-chipper over. Personally, as I was watching it, I didn’t have to apply suspension of disbelief. I was too engaged by the happenings and the yowzer visuals to give a sprinkle of a shite. But yes looking back, lots of what Miss Bullock survived was fairly far fetched. She put Supergirl to shame! But hey, no biggie, that’s why it’s called a movie and not real life. I guess my biggest peeve would have to be the story’s second plot point which sent the narrative to its conclusion. A bit too Hollywood heavy-handed/semi-cheesy for me. It took me out of the film for a moment. And normally I don’t mind that stuff, but on this round, for reasons only Crom knows for sure, I did.
On the whole though, Gravity is a must see in cinemas! I saw it on a regular screen in 3D (the latter didn'jack-up my enjoyment of the picture often BTW) but I can just imagine how much more punch it carries on an IMAX screen in 3D. You down with a visceral thrill ride that ups the ante on how a space opus should look and how it should make you feel? Gravity is for you!
We get a face with a nasty and deep gash in it, that’s it.
T & A
Miss Bullock in tight shorts and top is as far as it went.
For everybody that keeps telling me that one day there will be no movie theaters and that films will be screened via the internet on our TVs, I say: I HOPE YOU’RE WRONG! If there was one movie that acted as Exhibit A as to why we need cinemas, it would be GRAVITY. There is no f*cking way that a plasma screen, no matter how big could convey the same spectacle than a grand theatre screen when it comes to a movie like this. Fast paced, driven by action, filled with breathtaking survival scenes, solid acting, a poignant score, a mucho involving visual style, clever plays with "silence" and space imagery that floored me; Gravity owned me! I didn't watch the movie, I lived it! Sure that last plot turn didn’t fully sit well with me (a bit too Hollywood-ish) and looking back, lots of stuff wasn’t plausible, but WHO CARES! I'm not THAT guy. Gravity grabbed me by the collar and took me on a bumpy, emotionally charged and hypnotizing ride. That was all I needed from it!
Robert Downey Jr. was initially cast in the Clooney role but dropped out due to scheduling conflicts.
Angelina Jolie was their first choice, she turned it down, then they moved on to Natalie Portman who couldn't do it cause she got pregnant.
The flick cost about $80,000,000 to make.
The great Ed Harris was the voice of Houston.