Gravity is a simple story - three astronauts are working on the outside of the international space station when a bunch of debris comes hurtling through space and kills one of them, damages the space station and separates the remaining two from it. The remaining two are Jack Kowalski (George Clooney) and Dr Ryan Stone (Sandra Bullock) and it's a pleasure to see them being like we expect George Clooney and Sandra Bullock to be (unruffled, charming and slightly self-deprecating in his case and neurotic and a bit clumsy in hers) and yet completely convincing as astronauts marooned in space. I don't mean I forgot I was watching George Clooney and Sandra Bullock, but I was completely absorbed in their plight. This simple story is both gripping and nail biting and most things that can go wrong do go wrong.
Even without the nail-biting action, Gravity is an experience that you shouldn't miss. In the same way that few of us will get to go to Antarctica, even fewer of us will get to go to space. But for 90 minutes, you'll get some idea of what that could be like. The view is sensational, and (literally) out of this world. You'll appreciate the concept of weightlessness and more particularly how there's nothing to slow you (or other things) down once you or they start moving. You'll get the sense of claustrophobia engendered by being in a space suit and breathing a limited supply of oxygen and a sense of how lonely and quiet it is hundreds of kilometres above earth. You'll flinch as space debris seemingly whizzes past your head.
Visually, Gravity is big, beautiful, surreal and spacious. And happily it's emotionally as well as visually satisfying. Movie going as it should be, I think.
Anne's rating: 4.5/5 Ian's rating: 4/5