Sunday, October 6, 2013

Gravity - review

Gravity is a space-based drama directed by Alfonso Cuaron who is noted for directing Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban and Children of Men.  The movie does a very good job of capturing the desolate silence of space.  The effects are incredible though the plot is a stretch at times.  The acting is fairly decent and the suspense is gripping even with a story that is only skin deep.

While working on the Hubble Space telescope astronauts Dr. Stone, played by Sandra Bullock, and Matt Kowalski, played by George Clooney, are hit by space debris.  The shuttle is broken beyond repair; the rest of the crew is dead and with no communications available from Houston, Dr. Stone and Matt Kowalski must attempt to find a way back to Earth after free floating in space for hours.  They must try to get to the International Space Station in order to survive.  If they don’t make it in time they will undoubtedly die in space.

The thing that sets Gravity apart from other films is that it looks as if it is filmed in space.  The effects and photography are really amazing looking. The physics and movement of the astronauts and objects seem very realistic and for the most part add a real sense of tension to the film.  The lack of sound is also a nice touch in the environment since it creates a sense that you are in the vacuum and that you are a part of the desolation.

Where Gravity loses some points is in the fairly simple narrative.  At its core the movie is a story of getting from one place to another after a struggle.  They attempt to get into the character and their motivations, but it seems so brief in doing so that it is difficult to really develop a connection with the character.  The Matt Kowalski character is really charming but even that isn’t enough to carry the movie.

For the most part, Gravity is an okay film.  The visuals are very stunning but the story is really nothing grand.  A different ending or maybe even creating scenes in the shuttle prior to the accident so we grow to like the characters would have helped greatly.  If you are itching to see Gravity I recommend waiting to rent or seeing it as a matinee. It certainly is not the best film even though it is pretty.

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