There are a few things that really scare me. Being buried alive is one, as well as being locked in a room with snakes and rats. But after watching the brilliant heart stopping thriller 'Gravity,' I can now say being stranded in space is on the list.
'Gravity' is directed by Alfonso Curaron ('Children of Men'), who co-wrote the script with his son Jonas. This film is not only breathtaking but ground breaking. When I left the theatre, I definitely felt that I'd been to deep space - that's how amazing the visual effects are. For those of you who are unfamiliar with what it's like in space, there is nothing to carry sound, there is no oxygen and there is no air pressure. Of course it's not all bad, the beauty is astonishing.
But that's not necessarily the case when you find yourself stranded in such an environment. The film opens in the silent abyss 800 kilometers above the Earth's atmosphere, where the Shuttle Explorer is in orbit. Mission Specialist Ryan Stone (Sandra Bullock) who is attached to a robotic arm is installing a new scanning system on the Hubble Telescope. Dr. Stone's obvious discomfort in zero gravity is in stark contrast to the Mission Commander Matt Kowalski (George Clooney) - who happily rides around space in his jet pack, while listening to old school country western music on his radio.
This is his final voyage into space and Matt is having a blast.
At first, things are relativity calm and filled with random chit-chat but of course it doesn't take long for all that to change. A voice (Ed Harris) from Mission Control in Houston, tells Kowalksi, that on the other side of the planet, the intentional demolition of an obsolete satellite has sent sharp fragments hurtling into space. It sets off a chain reaction that puts the fast growing debris field on a collision course with the Explorer.
They are told to get back to the shuttle and get the hell out of there. But, that isn't quite what happens. The debris comes quick and the inescapable impact is catastrophic, destroying the shuttle and leaving Stone and Kowalski as the lone survivors. To make matters worse, all communication with Mission Control has been lost and with it, any change of rescue. Kowalksi and Stone are left adrift in the void and the two must find a way to see past their own limitations if they are ever going to get back to earth.
There is really nothing else to say about this incredible, innovative film expect this. Sandra Bullock...Sandra Bullock...Sandra Bullock. She is absolutely amazing. She brings out so many shades of Dr. Stone and you can't help but route for her. She hits all the right notes and in the end, you realize that 'Gravity' is a story of a woman's passage from a place of loss to a place where she rediscovers her purpose and her passion for life.
Do not miss 'Gravity' which opens in theatres, Friday October 4th 2013 and see it in 3D and IMAX if you can.
I gave 'Gravity' five bagels out of five and John came pretty close with his score.
Check out our video for more of our thoughts and John's rating.