Movie Review: Gravity [2013]

Don't let go
Do you know, why 3D was invented? I do. Because we had to see this in 3D, because Gravity is the best film experience I've ever had, just like Life of Pi last year, and Avatar four years ago. Director Alfonso Cuarón managed bring absolutely different experience of breathtaking visuals, bright colors and great directing.

Gravity follows a medical engineer Ryan Stone (Sandra Bullock) and an astronaut Matt Kowalski (George Clooney) working together to survive after an accident leaves them adrift in space, where even one mistake can cost you a life. Since there is no one in the film except those two and Dr. Stone is left alone quite shortly after the movie starts, there are no much dialogues, however it still manages to keep you tense and stressed any minute of it, mostly because technically perfectly made visual & 3D effects.

Emmanuel Lubezki is finally getting his first cinematography Oscar, for doing and outstanding job of capturing Earth from space, using lights to show us sunrise and making space very real for us. Gravity is the only and first space movie that actually shows how beautiful world is from the astronaut's view. The hardest part for cinematographer as usual is to properly deliver the reflections on real object in mirrors, glasses and etc. The scenes, where astronauts are spinning in the open space seems to be very carefully done and watching/realizing this brought so much enjoyment.
And of course, visuals are massive, effective and thrilling, they totally bring tensity and scary emotions of being out there. Additionally, music composed by Steven Price absolutely gorgeous, making each scene more beautiful and involving. I personally think that he's one of the front-runners in this year composer race.

What I did not like it the scenario how everything was happening. Movie repeated every scene time by time: they're under attack, they stay alive and reach new destinations, the are under attack, they stay alive and reach another destination and so on. It seemed a little artificial and boring. The same time, there is no much material for writing, because of quite few dialogues. But some Clooney's jokes were actually funny (and he entertained a lot).

However, I should admit that Sandra Bullock is at the top of her acting career. In Gravity she did the best performance of her ever. First, because it's not easy to play that role, to deliver emotions at its finest, be strong and weak the same time. Second, she definitely has better awards material than in The Blind Side, so she can easily make final top 5 at Oscars and Golden Globes -  woman, who's sentimental to her dead baby, fighting for survival in the space, attempting suicide and staying alive - it's kind of winning formula.

But Alfonso Cuarón is the one who really deserves applause because he combined sensation, visual beauty, tension and great acting in one movie, which almost never happens and brought it to the screens in most entertaining way I could imagine. Directors who shot action-based Sci-Fi thrillers have one of the hardest jobs to do. They have to capture things that they have never seen in reality (in this case space) and to make the viewers experience the most realistic feelings. I had the sense as if I was floating in above the Earth.

All in all, Gravity is technical perfection, but there could have been done more in writing part. However it's already a landmark in Sci-Fi, as it's been Avatar when premiered.
Oscar chances? Definitely shoo-in for winning Cinematography & Visual Effects. Also, almost sure for its nomination in Original Score, Directing, Film Editing, Sound Mixing & Editing nominations. Also, most likely it is in top 5 best picture films and it can earn Production Design nod. I personally think that Alfonso is the strongest contender in Directing nomination, following last year champ Ang Lee to win for directing a technically advanced movie.


  1. Man, I hope you're right that this is a shoo-in for Cinematography. I'm starting to wonder if Chivo is cursed!

  2. Gravity was the first film I loved from 2013. It should win all the technical Oscars, but who knows about the big ones... I've got a feeling the mediocre American Hustle will sweep in and take a few major awards.

  3. It easily wins technical categories and directing too, I think. I hope AH winning picture and not 12 Years a Slave, still doubt Gravity taking the honor

  4. Nice review Nika. Beautiful movie, no doubt about that. However, the script did need some tuning here and there.

  5. Thanks Dan. Yep, a better story would help a lot. It just seemed quite simple one.

  6. It is this years Life of Pi, showing something different from other movie. However, 12 Years A Slave or Rush can be dark horses. But I still bet on Gravity