Gravity ★★★★

Gravity is not the best sci-fi movie ever made. Not by a long shot. However, it does one thing better than any sci-fi movie I have ever seen, and that's creating the illusion that you are actually in space, floating around in zero gravity, in complete isolation.

The fact that Alfonso Cuaron nailed the aesthetic so thoroughly forgives a lot of problems with the script. It would be easy to complain about how forced the set-up feels for the movie's big action sequences, but when you're actually sitting there, watching it (preferably in the incredible 3D that the film was obviously meant to be viewed it), you're caught up in how masterful the illusion is, and how stunning all of the set-pieces look. This is some of the most convincing CGI I can every remember seeing, this is certainly one of the most visually impressive movies of all time.

The feeling of free-floating in space is so absolute, with the camera drifting around in orbit as if it is just another object sliding around in the vast nothingness. not wired to any specific axis, flipping around and changing the context of what is up and what is down. Often scenes are delivered in seemingly one long, continuous take, never cutting to take you out of the immediate action and vertigo of the situation. I have to believe that some audience members will not be able to handle this film without getting nauseous, and I say that in the most complimentary way possible

Unfortunately, I have to imagine that a lot would be lost seeing this movie outside of the theater experience. The experience of seeing this movie out of 3D, on a much smaller screen, is probably akin to watching first-person footage of a roller coaster ride. The image is there but the actual, visceral feeling that you are there is not. This is one that I recommend every must see in the theater, in 3D, in the biggest screen possible.

This movie could have been a masterpiece had the script not seemed like it was on autopilot, but as it stands, there's really not much here besides the incredible visuals, and the most refined realization of "Outer Space" setting that has ever been filmed. I'm not just shrugging that off, I think that this is an incredible achievement in filmmaking, but I would probably also say that about Avatar, a film that actually has a lot in common with this one. Incredible to watch whenever you get the chance to see it in the optimal setting, but not something that I ever put on my home television.

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