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Posted by martinteller on October 10, 2013

As usual with big-ticket, widely-reviewed movies, I’m going to keep this relatively short.  For his technical achievements and craftsmanship, Alfonso Cuaron deserves all the praise.  Emmanuel Lubezki’s cinematography is absolutely stunning, the special effects are seamless, and the long, fluid, balletic takes must have taken intense preparation.  And the film makes for absolutely gripping entertainment, really edge-of-your-seat stuff.  Throughout the movie, I was uncertain what the outcome would be.  It’s an exceptionally riveting piece of work.

It’s just too bad that the script is lacking.  One can forgive the stylish one-liners like “I hate space” as part of the fun of it, a break in the tension.  But the casual dialogue sounds so written, so cliché… like it was scripted by someone who had never listened to actual conversations between real people but had merely studied a lot of movies and TV.  It’s trying to sound natural, but it’s a little (or a lot) off.  Bullock’s backstory is ham-fistedly shoehorned in and creates only a vague, overly familiar character sketch.  The “womb” image is certainly lovely, but doesn’t resonate as a thematic device in context.  The movie is wonderful as a thrilling, breathtaking experience.  But it does feel like a missed opportunity to explore the existential implications in greater depth, and the screenplay is clunky.

A sidenote: I haven’t seen a movie in 3D since the abysmal Spy Kids 3, which gave me a whopping headache.  But I decided to finally catch up with the times and give it a shot.  The 3D trailers for the upcoming new entries in the Hobbit and Thor franchises made my heart sink… the same floating “paper cut-out” look I had dreaded.  But Gravity implements the 3D superbly.  Objects had real depth, not just pasted in different planes of space.  And no headache.  Rating: Very Good (80)


2 Responses to “Gravity”

  1. JamDenTel said

    I agree with you almost to the word. I would personally mention that Bullock and Clooney do quite well in roles that give them little to work with, and that the score is rather intrusive at times, but that’s quibbling.

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