Gravity follows two astronauts in space after a catastrophic disaster cripples their space shuttle and leaves them adrift. They must do whatever they can to survive and make it back to earth.
I’ll start by saying this I had high expectations for Gravity and it exceeded every single one. This is without a doubt the best movie of the year and one of the best in the last decade. It is a true cinematic achievement thanks to the director Alfonso Cuarón. This is a movie that should be seen by everyone and I have a feeling that most people don’t know what they are walking into. It upsets me because a lot of people are comparing it to that awful shark movie, Open Water, where two people are drifting in the ocean and trying not to be eaten by sharks. Sandra Bullock, who plays one of the astronauts, isn’t floating endlessly into space. So don’t worry, Gravity is so much more than that.
Gravity is a fully immersive movie that was four years in the making. There hasn’t been a movie since Avatar to properly use 3D technology which makes you like you are part of the environment. While watching Gravity, you get the sense of floating in space along with the characters on the screen and that is due to Cuarón’s long continuous shots. The opening shot goes 12 minutes without being interrupted. Cuarón has a fascination with long shots and had many in his 2006 film, Children of Men. It felt like Gravity used no more 30 shots whereas an average film has 5000 shots.
When they began making this film Cuarón realized the technology didn’t exist to create this film. So he and his team developed a way to properly demonstrate the weightlessness of zero gravity. They created a device called a “Light box” which consists of over 4000 light bulbs that could create any light onto the actor while they are spinning around. To the actors, it was also known as a torture chamber.
Cuarón wanted to make sure that this film was as accurate as possible. This is one of the few movies that doesn’t use sound in space because there is no sound in space! Most action space movies will use the sounds of explosions. You won’t hear that in Gravity. Instead of using sound in space, the use of the musical score creates the suspense and thrills. Steven Price beautifully matched up the score with the destruction that occurs.
Sandra Bullock and George Clooney were the only actors (for the most part) in this film but Bullock was the driving force. While both actors did a wonderful jobs in their roles, they script was a little lacking. It had a great story about survival in space but the character development was a little weak. The movie would have to be longer for it to work but I can’t really complain. It would take away from the rest of the story so the script problems can be forgiven.
The visual effects were photorealistic and I felt like I was watching one of the IMAX 3D space documentaries like Hubble 3D or Space Station 3D. Cuarón had said he wanted to get all the details on the space shuttles and the International Space Station correct all the way down to the nut and bolt. The reflections of the earth on the astronaut’s helmets are incredible and that is due in part to the lighting from the Light Box. Watching the Earth revolve, especially during the opening shot, is simply amazing and every other visual effect in Gravity is unbelievably realistic
I can not recommend this movie enough. It is truly a cinematic marvel that has to be witnessed in a 3D format on the big screen. If you have an IMAX near you, even better! Just make sure you see Gravity, if not for yourself then do it for me. Bring your friends with you, bring as many as you can. I write plenty of reviews and there isn’t another movie like Gravity and you will be sorry that you missed out. It is sitting pretty at a 98% on Rotten Tomatoes and is one of the best reviewed films of the year. So go see Gravity now!
5/5 – Masterpiece