Let’s put it this way – Gravity is now in my top three favorite films of all-time. Previously my top three were The Empire Strikes Back, L.A. Confidential and Casablanca. Gravity is now in that top three, although it’s spot is being internally debated. It’s that good.
If you haven’t seen the trailers for it (there’s one at the end of this review), the film is about a group of astronauts who are hit by satellite debris and have to fight for survival. If you’ve seen the trailer, you’re aware how intense Gravity looks. Well, it lives up to the expectations and then exceeds them by leaps and bounds.
Gravity is without a doubt, the single most intense, beautiful and (literally) breathtaking film I’ve ever seen. I’ve been a huge fan of director Alfonso Cuarón ever since I saw Harry Potter and The Prisoner of Azkaban, my first taste of his amazing style and vision. I was further convinced of his masterful sense of filmmaking after seeing Children of Men and his breakthrough Y Tu Mamá También. Cuarón not only has fantastic style, but one of his trademarks are now incredibly long single take tracking shots. Most people don’t notice long, single takes and that there isn’t a cut if it’s done well.
Gravity continues this incredible feat with a 17 minute opening shot! It’s a remarkable feat and you become absolutely lost in the film seconds into it. It’s a breathtaking film filled with some of the most beautiful cinematography in recent memory. Sandra Bullock plays the heroine Ryan Stone in a riveting performance. I haven’t seen a more worthy Oscar performance yet this year. George Clooney, as Matt Kowalski, is also great, adding a sense of humor and calm to a chaotic situation.
Arguably most impressive about the film, is it’s attention to detail and realism. Yes, it’s a work of fiction and some scientific artistic merits were taken to advance the story, but ultimately it stays true to the realities of space. No sound. No gravity. No oxygen. Life can not exist there. These truths constantly run through your mind as you watch the characters struggle and fight for survival. The musical score is powerful and terrifying, amping up the reality of the scenes unfolding before you. I was clenching my armrest and reminding myself to breath throughout the film.
It is without a doubt, a remarkable piece of filmmaking. If you’re able to handle the intense and nerve-rattling story, it’s an absolute must see. Just remember to breathe.