I was worried heading into the theater without Dramamine. I am prone to motion sickness, and it tends to come out when I’m in a movie theater especially when there’s a lot of handheld cam shots. I had problems with Blair Witch Project, avoided problems with Cloverfield thanks to Dramamine and was feeling a bit queasy at 12 Years a Slave.
This was also my second 3D experience in a theater. I went to to a live 3D broadcast of the 2009 BCS Championship Game that saw the Florida Gators beat the Oklahoma Sooners 24-14. It was less 3D and more let’s-put-on-strange-glasses-and-cross-our-eyes-and-maybe-we’ll-see-a-chance-of-the-desired-effect kind of event.
But I went to see Gravity, sat in the back of the theater and put on the glasses. Instantly I knew it was not going to be the same experience as the football game. It worked.
Gravity is a horror story not like Alien or 2001: A Space Odyssey. It’s more like The Shining. The monster is outer space. It’s not tangible, doesn’t have a voice and doesn’t move. Outer space became the Overlook Hotel unleashing horror upon horror to the two floating astronauts.
Despite sounding so open, outer space is claustrophobic in this movie. And like the Overlook Hotel, it implodes onto itself gradually as the movie goes on. With everything that Dr. Ryan Stone (Sandra Bullock) has to deal with in her fight for survival, suddenly its her psyche she has to deal with.
The technical marvel in pulling off this film was enough to overcome the thin plot. It’s simple: try and make it back to earth safely. There was some backstory filler of Dr. Stone that was very eyerolling.
It sounds like director Alfonso Cuarón and his team got most of the experience of being in space correct. A couple of things were fudged for the sake of the story, but these oversights weren’t so obvious to the point of distraction.
In all it’s a breathtaking suspenseful movie that will keep you entertained for 91 minutes. I really don’t know how this will translate on the home television, but it was amazing watching it in 3D. And, to boot, I had no issues with motion sickness.
This isn’t the best movie I’ve seen this year, but it is definitely one of the most entertaining ones.