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Sunday, November 3, 2013

Movie Review: "Gravity" (2013)

A good friend recommended that I see "Gravity" (directed by Alfonso Cuarón and starring little-known actors Sandra Bullock & George Clooney) at the IMAX in 3D near my condo, so I did just that. And I was on the edge of my seat for the entire time as this is a good, intense movie that is visually amazing.

Dr. Ryan Stone (Bullock) is an all-business medical engineer who is on her first space shuttle mission while Matt Kowalski (Clooney) is the commander of his last mission. Unless you are living in a vacuum free of pop culture, you know that things go awry...and in a big way. Before the shit hits the fan though, Stone & Kowalski seem to be having a pretty good time, essentially floating through space with the Earth as an incredible backdrop. And Kowalski keeps Stone & Houston (who is only a voice, specifically Ed Harris' voice) as well as the audience entertained by regaling us with humorous stories while keeping focused on the mission at hand. You really feel as if you are out in space with them, especially in my case with the large IMAX screen & 3D special effects. But you don't just feel it visually, you feel it audibly "feel" the silence, sometimes in an eerie way. How does the shit hit the fan? A Russian satellite explodes which results in debris flying at an insane rate of speed right at them. This debris does indeed hit them and then...they break loose, tumbling into space. What happens next?  I have no intentions of going into details about what happens next, how it happens or how things end up. All I will say is that the events that take place in this movie feel very real and keep you on edge almost the entire time.

This is one of the best movies I've seen that is set in outer space. It is visually astounding as Cuarón captures the vastness, the silence and the sheer terror of space impeccably. This is not Star Wars or Star feels real and shows how something like this could happen. And it depicts this in a very believable way. Do far-fetched, unrealistic things happen? Sure. Are the laws of science & physics dramatized? Absolutely. Do these things make this movie an less real-life, intense or otherwise terrifying? Most definitely NOT.

The acting is wonderful as well. There are only 2 people in this movie and both are great. Clooney plays a somewhat typical character for him...good-looking, witty, charming, etc. He isn't overbearingly cocky or arrogant though and plays a very genuine character very well. But Bullock carries this movie. Her performance carries this movie as much as the visual effects do. She gives a real, emotionally-driven performance. It is one of her best.

I really liked "Gravity"...9.0/10 stars

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