28 December 2013

Gravity film review

I don't do a lot of film reviews (I need to because I'm at the cinema at least once a week) but I felt compelled to write something after seeing Gravity in 3D. There's been a lot of hype about the technology and the ground broken by the effects in this film. Yes, it was visually stunning and the cutting edge tech used was jaw dropping, but I was more moved by the story. What struck me was this film could have been set anywhere - underground, at sea, on a mountain. It just happens to be in space. To me there was a subliminal message to the masses who may have been sucked in by the setting and the effects hype to basically keep going and keep fighting. Even after you've been kicked down a few times. Even when it seems like the best thing to do is to just quietly give up. That sometimes you have to go through hell to realise what you are missing. The tagline "Don't Let Go" is particularly ironic, as this is precisely what Bullock's character needs to do to get her life back - in space and on earth.

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It directly spoke to many of us who feel/have felt like we go through the motions, numbed by the pain of losing people or other difficult life events. It is a direct kick up the backside to those of us who have gone into automatic pilot, just to get through. I've been living it up a bit recently and it still grabbed me by the neck and made me realise that we have to live our lives to the full, despite the circumstances.

Sandra is instantly likeable, and her robotic, perfectionist approach to life resonates with many of us - all work and no play. We are forced to ask early on, where does she get her drive from? What is her back story?

The film should be shown to young girls  to blow away all of these fairy stories where you get rescued by the handsome, charming prince (Mr Clooney on top form) out of the water. The reality is that nowadays, you have to be your own heroine, and you can because you're clever enough, tough enough and can set your sights high. Ok, in a way Clooney's character does come to the rescue but not in a traditional fairy tale sense. The obstacles don't let up; she gets through one massive challenge, has time for a quick breather then is swiftly tested again. Pretty much like modern life - for everyone. It can be seen a feminist film in some respects but the central messages of triumph against adversity, self-sacrifice and never giving up apply to everyone, especially in these times.

I could go more into the plot but there is potential for huge spoilers, I just left thinking that no matter what god-awful crap has happened to you, you HAVE to go on and try to enjoy your life as much as possible. No questions. It's about perspective, and how sometimes we need to zoom out very far (in this case hundreds of thousands of miles) to see what we are missing, or what needs to change. 

It takes the central character to be in a place lacking gravity for the penny to finally drop. I loved it, and I hope you do to. 

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