Culture Street

Film review: Gravity

On October 3, 2013

By Sophia Whitfield

Gravity is a film that must be seen at the cinema in 3D. Watching it at home on a small screen just will not do this film justice. Alfonso Cuaron (The Children Of Men and Harry Potter And The Prisoner Of Azkaban) has put together a visually beautiful film where everything in space is in constant motion.

Starring Sandra Bullock and George Clooney, Gravity opens as disaster strikes the space shuttle. Dr Ryan Stone (Sandra Bullock), a space engineer on her first mission, is finishing up work on the Hubble Space Telescope 370 miles out in lower Earth orbit when a call comes in from Houston to say a Russian satellite is down and debris is flying through space. She must abort her mission immediately and return to the safety of the shuttle. Stone doesn’t make it in time and after the shuttle is hit Mathew Kowalsky (George Clooney), a veteran astronaut on his final mission, and Stone are the only two survivors left adrift in space tethered to nothing but each other. With little oxygen left they must act quickly in an attempt to save themselves.

Stone finds herself thrown into an intimacy with her fellow survivor as they drift through the yawning expanse of space. Kowlasky, the diehard veteran of space, attempts to bolster her resolve to survive as he delves into her past.

This is a film with space as the main protagonist and Sandra Bullock playing second fiddle. Once Stone loses contact with Houston (the voice of Houston is played by Ed Harris) she is at the mercy of her environment. It is the haunting silence and the vastness of space that is both terrifying and spectacular.

Written by Cuaron with his son Jonas, Gravity is a masterful creation of the unimaginable. Together with director of photography Emmanuel Lubezki, visual effects supervisor Tim Webber and composer Steven Price, Cuaron has produced a visually astonishing film that raises the bar in cinematic visual effects.

Gravity is released in cinemas across Australia today. Join the discussion here.

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