The ‘Gravity’ of the movies

Gravity is, in my humble opinion, one of the best two-character movies ever to hit the silver screen.gravity2

Yes, we see a third person, body only.

Yes we hear his voice, but never see him speaking.

When we do get a close up of his face, he is dead. His screen time is maybe 90 seconds. Thus, this is a two-character movie.

Sandra Bullock and George Clooney, in the roles of American astronauts Dr. Ryan Stone, a medical engineer on her first shuttle mission, and veteran space walker Matt Kowalsky, respectively, are not the only stars as we find a third with the special effects.

Director Alfonso Cuarón Orozco (Children of Men, 2006; Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, 2004) was given a hard task to maintain our interest for 91 minutes.GRAVITY

Let’s face it, there is only so much time a person can look at stars and mother earth without getting bored.

In Open Water (2003), based on a true story of two scuba divers accidently left behind in the ocean by a tour boat, our attention is focused on the sharks that start to appear.

There are no sharks or Martians in space?

What does one do?

Toss in some, or make that, toss in oodles of space debris coming at you at incredible speed while your crew are outside your ship doing maintenance and testing.

Let the fun begin.

Marked as a drama, sci-fi, thriller, I would toss out the sci-fi genre.gravity3

The drama is intense with the fear of open space and security of the pod/capsule only inches away. The editing is crisp and sound well balanced.

Not too keen with the Bullock and Clooney pairing.

Robert Downey Jr. was cast for the lead role but could not fit it into his schedule. This isn’t all that bad as I feel he is slowly getting typecast into the Ironman or Sherlock Holmes film series.

Angelina Jolie was the original choice for Dr. Stone. She would have brought intensity.

It would have been interesting to see how Naomi Watts or Natalie Portman, also cast, would have handled the role.

Aside from that and not memorized by the star name recognition, it was an OK not great flick.

The one two-character movie that does surpass it though is the 1968 war drama Hell in the Pacific, with Lee Marvin and Toshiro Mifune as an American pilot and Japanese navy captain deserted on a uninhabited Pacific Ocean island during World War II.

It is a powerful drama and 102 minutes and 30 seconds of pure entertainment.

The problem is the last 30 seconds which rate as one of the worst movie endings of cinema history.

For Gravity on a Where’s My Air scale we give it a three.

See you on the silver screen.