We all know the quote “in space, no one can hear you scream”, so what can you expect from Sandra Bullock and George Clooney’s journey in space? Is it a modern adaptation on Alien?
As it turns out, this is one of the few films this year where the atmosphere is important and adds to the experience. Forget about waiting for the DVD release, splurge on the 3D tickets and you’ll be thanking yourself as the end credits roll. But it will not disappoint as it has aspects that not only will please a multitude of demographics but introduces you to a new visual experience.
Gravity has a simple plot to say the least. What can you expect from a film that takes place in space without being pitched as another sci-fi film? Ryan Stone (Sandra Bullock) and Matt Kowalski (George Clooney) are the unusually beautiful doctor, astronaut duo who are forced to work together after freak circumstances sees them separated from their spacecraft and drifting in overwhelming expanse of space. The father-son team Alfonso and Jonás Cuarón who wrote, and in Alfonso’s case, directed the film creates enough tension and suspense to leave the audience gripping their seats without having to cram their narrative with overly complex ideas.
Clooney and Bullock work well together creating perfect balance between tense and comedic scenes which allows viewers a chance to take a breath between winces and gasps. Their effortless chemistry and onscreen banter reinforces the idea that, while they may not be astronauts, they are a realistic team. Yet when they discuss clear space jargon there are times when the doubt disappears and Clooney and Bullock transform into astronauts before our eyes.
But the main game changer for the film is the visuals. As soon as the 3D glasses are put on and the first frame is observed you understand why this film not only had to be seen on the big screen but in 3D. Gorgeous landscapes of the Earth greet the eyes transforming you from a seat in the cinema into the emptiness of space, taking your breath away. Although most people would have seen some variation of Earth from space, Gravity takes that one step further. It has never been this clear, detailed and breathtaking. Seeing the Earth from this perspective reminds you about the natural beauty of the planet we call home.
It is the first film that takes place in space from a fictional perspective that we have had in a long time that does not have supernatural or sci-fi undertones. In fact, it could also be argued about being the most realistic depiction. Yes it may be because of the leaps and bounds that visuals have taken to be so crisp that you question if you are not actually there. But even with films like Apollo 13 that have a similar narrative to Gravity, because of the way it is shot you do not question the authenticity of actually being in space. This is because Alfonso Cuarón does not overwhelm the sense with too many unnecessary sound effects or other random visual distractions as he understands the power our Earth and space can have without any help.
Additionally, Cuarón utilizes our limited knowledge of space walking by using what we would assume as realistic scenarios like Stone’s equipment drifting away or Kowalski discussing the longest moon walk. These clearly unique actions and jargon applicable only in space, bridges the gap between fantasy and reality.
But whether or not the narrative is viewed revolutionary, no one will leave the theatre upset. The tasteful visuals of which no other film has done gives a unique perspective into a place where the average person will never venture and get to appreciate. Gravity seamlessly blends visuals and narrative that creates a full and fulfilling movie experience.