“Gravity” is a film which seems to ask philosophically dense questions within the context of its thrilling disaster theatrics. This is to say – this blockbuster, starring the magnificent Sandra Bullock and George Clooney (portraying Dr. Ryan Stone and astronaut Matt Kowalsky, respectively), basically forces you to face the nature of emptiness and human mortality. Even though many see this as being just another sci-fi flick that incorporates fearful allusions to potential disastrous events, one can’t help but imagine the scenario unfolding in real life at some time. In a way, that’s the scariest thing about this move – the notion that such a thing could really happen (especially with all the talk of space tourism entering the sphere of public consciousness).
Sure, a lot of people might stop in their analysis and simply state that “Gravity” only seeks to build up dramatic tension through real-life physics-based conundrums that one might encounter when stranded in space. However, there seems to be a deeper message buried in it. This isn’t just a movie that presents you with one terrifying proposition after another; it seeks to suck you into its world, moving past simply identifying with a character.
Throughout the film Bullock and Clooney’s performances are entirely spot-on, they more or less perfectly capture the immediacy, dread and horror required in certain scenes, elevating the drama to new heights. Along with all the tension and terror also comes the expecting heart-wrenching moments as well, the kind that tends to produce emotionally moving effects. At the same time, the movie remains just as impressive from a technical perspective, with producer David Heyman even going as far as saying that “It’s not a film that could have been made before now.”
If there’s one theme that’s echoed throughout the film it’s the idea of never giving up hope. In spite of giving up when finding themselves in a near-impossible situation, Gravity’s two main characters turn their attention inward, searching the very limits of their logic for some desperate solution. Cuarón’s “Gravity” also re-imagines the same kind of dramatic scenarios explored in earlier disaster films, elevating the fear factor to an entirely new level of suspense courtesy of the pioneering special effects utilized. It’s hard for most of us tiny humans to try to comprehend just how vast, dark and endless space actually is. One thing that makes this film so noteworthy is the way in which it introduces the audience to the cosmic expanse.
On its face, “Gravity” is just your typical fear-inducing thriller that expands on all the scariest parts about being an astronaut. However, upon closer inspection you’ll discover a film that seemingly explores the boundaries of human mortality, demonstrating just how fragile life actually is and how the smallest decisions can influence its course and direction. At the same time it’s a rather traditional outing, presenting the viewer with a classic heroine who you will immediately be able to identify with. In short, “Gravity” is definitely one of the top films of 2013, no question about it.