Thursday, 17 October 2013

Gravity [2013]

Alfonso Cuaron’s first film in 7 years, cheekily titled Gravity to highlight the lack of as also the want for it, isn’t the kind of blockbuster film that one gets to experience every day, despite, in essence, it being in the mould of one. What strikes immediately is its visual splendor and spectacular use of 3D and special effects. In fact, it might just be what the proponents of the much maligned 3D technology had been eagerly waiting for. And its measured pacing that managed to strike a fine balance between capturing the psychological situation and creating tension for the viewers, might seem removed from the kinetic-ness that most thrillers strive for. Further, Cuaron made exquisite use of excellent but non-intrusive long single-takes which took the viewers right into the middle of the story. However, the visual beauty and technical brouhaha couldn’t really mask its rather simplistic and quintessentially American theme of heroism, resilience and survival against all imaginable odds and adversities. And, the incredible level of challenge that is presented for the protagonist just added to its dramatic quotient, even at the sake of plausibility. When the debris from a defunct satellite causes unprecedented devastation and obliterates communication with Houston (the voice, in a wry reference to Apollo 13, provided by Ed Harris), Mission Specialist Dr. Ryan Stone (Sandra Bullock) finds herself utterly alone and helpless in the dark and hostile environ, as everyone else, including the team’s wisecracking commander (George Clooney) is lost. The majority of the film, therefore, deals with her coming to terms with her situation and somehow getting back to earth, while all the time grappling with a past tragedy which conveniently added to her hurdles.

Director: Alfonso Cuaron
Genre: Thriller/Sci-Fi
Language: English
Country: US

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