Gravity: a Cinematic Experience



My husband was itching to see Gravity in all its glory. So in order to beat the crowds, the family ventured forth to the IMAX theatre in the next city to see the film in 3D during an early Sunday afternoon. Full disclosure time, we all know people who would give anything to travel into outer space; they would be the opposite of me. I have no longing for space travel (for most travel, if one wants to get confessional) and am not particularly moved by the beauty of the images of the earth from space. So … not … interested! Compounding this is the fact that I usually avoid the 3D version of most theatrical releases. I usually find it unnecessary, distracting and physically uncomfortable (2 pairs of glasses on my nose for 90 min +, OUCH). If I need to see a 3D performance, I will go to a play. This film was truly an immersive visual spectacle. IMAX 3D is the way to see this film. This film moved me, emotionally and physically as I reflexively dodged space debris. I am glad I saw it. My husband and daughters were likewise wowed. Yes, even my reluctant 10 year old was impressed. Although she did declare that this was a movie she only had to see once. To warm her up for the excursion, we re-watched Sandra Bullock in The Heat last night on Blu-ray. It held up well on the 2nd viewing.

 One does not go to a film such as this to be moved by dialogue or character development. It is a simple disaster plot where one is fighting for survival in a harsh and unforgiving environment. That is of course, outer space. With that in mind, the film does not disappoint. The plot is simple enough. Sandra Bullock plays Ryan Stone who is a NASA doctor. While on a space walk trying to fix her experiment she and her ship are struck by unexpected space debris. She finds herself hurtling aimlessly in space and the film is the tale of her resourceful struggle for survival. The 3D effects are stupendous.
This is a story that was created to maximize the visual richness of a cinematic experience. However, to make it meaningful, one must care about the fate of the characters. That Sandra Bullock was chosen to play the main character was a wise choice. I can’t think of a more capable and affable actor to bring the audience onside as she finds the strength to fight for her survival. Truth be told, under similar circumstances, many of us might have collapsed, simply given up. Bullock does a fine job, as does George Clooney, the only other actor to get any screen time. However, this is not an actors film. This is a director’s movie. Kudos to  director Alfonso Cuaron. Very few films are worth see in 3D, much less IMAX 3D.  To see it any other way wouldn’t do it justice. This film is truly a unique cinematic experience.

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