At 372 miles above the earth, there is nothing to carry sound. No air pressure. No oxygen - Life in space is impossible. But the view? The view is breathtaking...Gravity is possibly one of the most talked about films over the last year and I now see why. Alfonso Cuaron provides us with a white knuckled, claustrophobic space drama that is the ultimate cinematic experience.
Gravity, unlike many big budget productions we see today follows just two main characters throughout it's duration. We have Matt Kowalski on his last mission and new to game medical engineer Dr Ryan Stone, who upon being asked how she feels, replies with 'Like a chihuahua in a tumble drier'. The cocky and cheeky Mr Kowalski played by no other than charmer, George Clooney (Ocean's Eleven, The Descendants) delivers the much needed lighthearted lines. However Sandra Bullock completely steals the show. This is possibly one of her best roles, on par with The Blind Side and Crash. This was not a glamorous role; there is minimal make-up and certainly a distinct lack of beauty pageants. Whilst what seems to be a routine space walk, something goes drastically wrong causing the entire mission and their team to the compromised. This event leaves Kowalski and Stone spiralling through the endless abyss that is our infinite universe. Of course this isn't giving anything away, as all trailers advertising said film have shown the inevitable loss of Ryan Stone trying to dodge space debris.
The 3D here is truly magnificent. When first witnessing The Hobbit late last year with crystal clear 3D to the point where you could look around the entire frame and see how defined it was, if a film was anything less it would have been rather disappointing! Gravity is streaks ahead. Every little detail is considered with utter depth resulting in feeling completely immersed whilst watching this nerve racking space ride. The director constantly breaks the fourth wall, virtually putting you directly in Dr. Stone's space suit, again only intensifying the utter despair she, herself is feeling.
Despite the trailer showing a fairly fast paced, action packed drama, the film itself is something completely different. This is well-paced journey for Dr. Stone. This is the path she has chosen as a coping mechanism to deal with the entire reason she took the job in the first place. With Steven Price's powerfully booming soundtrack constantly resonating the sound of the human heart beat, life and death play a big part in Gravity. This is her complete escape, her re-birth into the world after what she has just been through. In Gravity, there is no gravity. Every single shot is constantly rotating, turning and twisting across the screen. There are a handful of static shoots and even then, due to the sheer movement of the overall film, you still feel as if you have just walked off of a swaying boat.
This purely digital experience is a perfect example of technology meeting the means of the creator. Gravity is this generations answer to Kubrick's 2001: A Space Odyssey. Believe the hype; just be aware of the cliche script writing that will force you to fight back the tears!
Directed by Alfonso Cuaron
91mins, 12A (2013)