Gravity review: Houston we have a classic

Posted on 15 November 2013
By Charlie Elgar
  • Share:

After what seemed an age of anticipation, the film that is said to have commenced a new era of cinema creativity is here – Gravity.

Set in outer space, Gravity tells the tale of a medical engineer and an astronaut who’ve been wiped aside in the atmosphere, leaving them stranded and helpless in the loneliest of places.

With an all-star duo – George Clooney and Sandra Bullock – it pushes the boundaries of movie-making as we know it, with exceptional craftsmanship and individuality from director Alfonso Cuaron.

At one time or another we have ALL dreamt of going to space – sadly an impossible task for the majority of us. And Gravity may be about as close to that dream as we are ever to get.

Space is silent. Aside from the occasional sound of an electric drill in the opening scene, or the rustling of packets and popcorn from those in the theatre, we peer down on Earth in complete silence.

In the corner of our eye, a rather comedic Clooney effortlessly floats around the atmosphere, as we enviously admire his movements.

It seems that the sole purpose of this opening scene is to transport the viewer into outer space, where we will remain for the majority of the film.

Floating into the atmosphere, we nestle into the number one viewing spot for what is to be a very bumpy ride…

Admittedly the storyline is fairly simple – but it works. Clooney and Bullock make a nice pair, although they are soon separated, leaving Bullock’s inexperienced character Ryan to fend for herself – battling against the odds to survive and ultimately return to Earth.

With simple lines like “It’s not rocket science”, Clooney’s short and intermittent involvement introduces light-hearted humour and whit to proceedings, with himself often resembling a life-sized Buzz Lightyear drifting through space.

Comedic value aside, Cuaron does extremely well in creating Clooney’s character Matt Kowalski as a reliant space veteran whom Ryan is rather dependant on, and fairly lost without.

It’s fair to say that Cuaron’s aim for this film was to catapult the viewer into space, leaving them feeling weightless, breathless – and at some points rather claustrophobic.

The special effects of this picture have been unleashed with such thought and precision that they are a success, and for the 91 minute run-time we are trapped in space also – alone, helpless, and sometimes fearful of what is to come.

Forgetting the quality and authenticity of this spaceman story for just a minute, behind the special effects lies a tale of heartbreak, destruction and motivation.

Bullock’s lonesome journey is admirable, but the isolation of her character cries out for a friend – and that we are.

Cuaron has created a very personal relationship between viewer and actor, as we watch her grow as a person from beginning to end – praying she makes it back alive.

With few exceptions, this is one of the few films you’ll be grateful for seeing in 3D. Admittedly the film’s quality will deteriorate with home viewing or in 2D cinema, however Cuaron has pushed cinemas aesthetic boundaries, and is one of the few directors who has utilised the three dimensional technology to its full potential.

Providing you with laughs, tears and a whole lot of tension, Gravity is one of the greatest movies this year, and will undoubtedly go down as a classic for the foreseeable future – a huge success.

Gravity 3D cinema times at FACT:

Wednesday 20th November – 14:15‎ ‎16:30‎ ‎18:45‎ ‎21:00‎
Thursday 21st November – 14:15‎ ‎16:30‎ ‎18:45‎ ‎21:00‎
Friday 22nd November – ‎14:10‎ ‎16:20‎ ‎18:30‎ ‎20:40‎
Saturday 23rd November – 14:50‎ ‎17:00‎ ‎19:10‎ ‎21:20‎