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Gravity-doom and loneliness never looked this spectacular

This article is over 10 years, 7 months old
Issue 2379

Gravity is the latest film from Alfonso Cuaron, the director of among other things the brilliant Children of Men.

In this film, Cuaron answers what for many of us has been a burning question—what would happen if Sandra Bullock were to be jettisoned into space with only George Clooney for moral support?

The answer, perhaps not surprisingly, is that nerve shredding tension would ensue.

Bullock revels in the role of an astronaut left untethered after flying debris wrecks the space shuttle during a spacewalk.

She gladly accepts the opportunity to revive the steely-in-a-crisis routine she perfected in Speed, while the awesome backdrop provided by the Earth gives some philosophical heft to the “heroine in peril” drama.

Only two actors really appear in the film and Clooney takes a back seat, phoning in a fairly standard “it’ll be OK, stay calm” performance that doesn’t veer from his usual screen image.

Bullock apart, the real star of the show here is the cinematographer Emmanuel Lubezki.

The film looks absolutely spectacular in IMAX.

The action takes place almost entirely in near-Earth orbit, and I don’t think the sense of doom and loneliness, as well as wonder, that being in space must inspire has ever been captured so successfully.

Gravity is a technical marvel, again proving that spectacle is the one thing Hollywood still has over television drama.

The film’s 3D is marginally less pointless than usual, with some of the early scenes during the spacewalk aided by the stereoscopy.

That said, I don’t think those who want to save themselves a few pounds and see the film in 2D will be let down.

Callum McCormick


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