I have been hearing about Gravity since the trailer came out, with people going gaga over it. I deliberately did not watch the trailer or read anything about Gravity, as I did not want to be disappointed after watching it. Surprisingly one of my friends had booked tickets to watch Gravity and I ended up watching it at IMAX sooner than I expected.
Space is still a mystery to all of us, yet it fascinates us. The quest to discover the unknown has always been a human tendency.
Gravity begins with Ryan Stone ( Sandra Bullock), a medical engineer who is into space for first time, accompanied by veteran Matt Kowalski (George Clooney) who is on his last mission. The first fifteen minutes is full of light hearted humour, with George Clooney being himself and Alfonso Cuarón inviting us to this magical world of space. Things take a turn for the worse when space debris from a deliberately destroyed Russian Satellite collides with their Shuttle, causing the destruction of their shuttle and death of the crew members. The only survivors are Ryan and Matt, who are now left with depleting oxygen level, these two have to work together to reach ISS, in order to survive and get back to Earth.
With the plot established in the first 20 minutes, Alfonso Cuarón shifts his focus to his two characters Ryan and Matt. It is revealed that Ryan had a 4 year old daughter, who died. We also realize that Ryan is depressed due to her daughter’s death and that she has immersed herself in work after her death. Revealing anymore would ruin the fun for you, if you have not watched the movie.
George Clooney is perfect in his role as the cocky Matt Kowalski, and who would not want a man like George Clooney for company when you are lost in space. Sandra Bullock’s character is the focus of the movie, but somehow I felt she was not up to mark, the monologue towards climax was cringe inducing.
The cinematography by Emmanuel Lubezki can be described in one word-breathtaking. The way he has used CG’s, 3D and live action and brings space to us is simply amazing. This is one of the most visually pleasing films after Avatar that I watched on an IMAX screen.
Gravity as a movie is more of a visual treat, the story by Alfonso Cuarón and Jones Cuarón is under developed. The emphasis by Alfonso this time seems to be more on visual imagery than developing characters. The way Alfonso who is also editor of this film has captured and brought space to life is something commendable. When most sci-fi films have by now started being just about the big action sequences at climax, Gravity deviates from the formulaic big budget Hollywood films. Instead it offers us pure 90 minutes of visual orgasmic thriller with a story. Big kudos to Alfonso Cuarón for making a sci-fi film about human life, rather than those bang boom bang boom films Hollywood studios were churning out in name of Sci-fi.
Gravity has redefined how a space movie should look like; it has raised the bar so high. The fact is that it is not so much about big budget, but a vision and innovative story teller like director Alfonso Cuarón can still make audience gasp and hold their breath. This when you thought what more can be achieved in visual narrative of Cinema.
Go watch Gravity at an IMAX theatre if possible; for Gravity is not a movie, it is as they say an experience.