Our ability to firmly place our feet on the ground and be completely confident we won’t go floating away is something we often take for granted. However, the movie Gravity explores just that: weightlessness and the consequences it poses. Overall, the movie was a cinematic wonder, but lapsed a bit in grasping audience attention. There were a few positive and negative things I personally found with the movie, but unfortunately, this one is a movie that is much more tailored to personal taste and whether one would find it entertaining is unclear.
The movie centers on the story of Ryan Stone, played by Sandra Bullock, a young scientist testing a prototype she came up with through her hospital work. Stone is reserved early on, the painful memory of a significant loss down below on Earth haunting her, which the movie will progressively reveal. Along with her is Matt Kowalski, played by George Clooney, who is a witty, flirtatious partner on their mission. As they’re going about normal business, news strikes that a satellite crash has sent debris their way. An explosion ensues, and Stone and Kowalski find they may be the last people to survive their mission.
The first, major positive attribute was the visuals of the film. Though I have never been to space, the 3D visuals of what space is like are phenomenal. It is both breathtaking and daunting, and proves how far technology has come when it comes to representing what we see.
The next positive piece was the viewpoint. There are a couple crucial shots taken from within Ryan’s helmet. This gives the viewer a gut-wrenching reality of what it would be like to be suspended weightless and spinning in space, a truly terrifying thought that most people can't even begin to fathom. There are also many shots of the astronauts’ faces with their helmets on, and the reflection of the Earth comes across their faces. It’s both beautiful and eerie.
The dialogue and acting in the movie is earnest, and George Clooney is pretty convincing as the know-it-all, yet still caring, astronaut counterpart. As well, the 3D version has a few really neat scenes where intuitive things like pieces of satellites and tears are thrown at you, immersing you, if only momentarily. The last truly positive thing—not to spoil the movie—is that the ending is at least one that sits well with the viewer.
When it comes to negatives, the major one is that there are a lot of quiet, slow-paced parts. For anyone who has trouble with keeping their attention, this isn’t the movie to see. As well, anyone who doesn’t truly dig space wouldn’t find this movie to be their “cup of tea” either. The movie is additionally not the happiest. There are a few parts—though only minimally layered with emotion—that might get you (my mom cried). Other than that, there are a few repetitive scenes of breathing that become annoying and a couple times where I jumped; there are some surprises!
The movie is okay, I’d say. It’s a picturesque scene of our solar system with two good actors in it, but is it really worth the $12 per person not including concessions? That question is still up in the air. If movies with nice visuals are your thing, then yes. If not, I wouldn’t recommend it.