Wednesday, October 23, 2013

I went to see Gravity and have a few thoughts about it

THERE ARE SHITLOADS OF SPOILERS IN THE FOLLOWING. IF YOU HAVEN'T SEEN IT CARE ABOUT MOVIES GETTING SPOILED, STOP NOW.  DO NOT READ FURTHER.

I mean, duh.  Anyway, I went to the 3-D IMAX showing of "Gravity" at the AMC 14 Van Ness and since it's getting all kinds of press (97% on Rotten Tomatoes! Oscar talk!) I naturally assumed you'd be interested in my pointless, disgruntled opinion.

It's really impressive visually, I'll give it that!  The 3-D looks great and the visuals are stunning.  OK.

The dialogue is laughably, screamingly bad.  In the first part of the movie, George Clooney and Sandra Bullock trade repartee that wouldn't have ever made the cut at any mid-range ABC sitcom.  And the whole wisecracking thing just keeps reminding you IT'S GEORGE CLOONEY IN A SPACESUIT!  Especially when he makes repeated cracks about how attractive he is and how attracted to him she should be.  There is not one sentence that George Clooney says that sounds anything remotely like how you would expect an astronaut in space to sound.  They do all sound, however, like George Clooney on his pool deck in Malibu.  A LOT.  In fact, I wouldn't mind seeing an hour and a half of George Clooney at a party next to his pool in Malibu.

Whatever they're saying right now, I guarantee you it's cringe-inducing.
There's an Indian-American character who might as well be wearing an "I'M SO DEAD" sign on his back.  In fact, we don't see his face until it's been blown apart and hollowed out by space or whatever.

(Or maybe we do - I had to leave in the very early going for like 5 mins to take a call from our babysitter, i.e., my sister, because our child was freaking out about something.  She was fine, as it turns out.)

The plot itself, such as there is one, is mostly Sandra Bullock breathing very rapidly and trying to get from one ruined spaceship to another, interspersed with shots of Sandra Bullock in boy shorts and a t-shirt.  There are lots of lingering shots of Sandra Bullock's extremely toned legs and ass weightlessly sliding through doorways in space stations.  It's like a high-concept Hanes ad sometimes.

It's admirable that the filmmakers chose to have a woman as the hero and main character, and in fact, much of the film is Sandra Bullock alone.  BUT when she's about to give up and die, she is saved and prodded on to live by......THE WISECRACKING GHOST OF GEORGE CLOONEY.  FUCK, can't she just win on her own, without help from Alpha Male?

Then she makes it back to Earth and her space capsule crashes into some lake somewhere and she wriggles out of her space suit - hello boy shorts again! - and at this point, I was fully expecting a crocodile to menace her and her having to fight it off because the entire movie is her going from one life-threatening crisis to another.  So she swims up to the shore and to the final long, loving shots of her buttocks.

(Also, did I miss the explanation for this or where were all the Chinese on the Chinese space station?  Did they all just bounce?  Because they left the place a total mess.)

I know this sounds like a whiny rant, and I do want to say the film is worth going to see for the visuals alone. It certainly was tense and suspenseful, and that's fun in and of itself. But when something starts to get near-universal adulation, BE WARY.  I know I am.

6 comments:

GG said...

"I naturally assumed you'd be interested in my pointless, disgruntled opinion."

That should totally be your tag line for this blog.

Michael Strickland said...

My Partner Domestique went to see it without me, and came back horrified by the fucked-up physics. He wants to have a Mystery Science Theater screening with a bunch of geeks who know their stuff, and yell "Get to the air lock, you stupid bitch!" with an appreciative audience. He also said it was a classic DWGS movie, which translates to Dumb White Girl Syndrome that is usually featured most prominently in horror films.

GG said...

Oh my, my partner is a former physicist, thank you for the warning.

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