By Ranny Levy, Grandmother extraordinaire, Founder, President of Kids First!
You can say that I have a profound fondness for space exploration having grown up during the birth NASA and the “Race to the Moon.” My Dad did contract work for NASA, designing the ceramic shield that kept the space capsule returning to earth from burning up and other things. When I read and watched our youth film critics’ reviews of this film, I knew I had to go see it and take my grandson. Starring Sandra Bullock and George Clooney, “Gravity” is the highly charged story about a medical engineer and an astronaut who work together to survive after an accident leaves them adrift in space. Note that it’s rated PG-13 for intense perilous sequences, disturbing images and brief strong language. KIDS FIRST! Film Critics Gerry O thinks the film is “a life time experience that everyone must see!” and Keefer B finds the film to be “a suspenseful, visually enchanting and wonderfully acted film.” See both their reviews below.
by Gerry O, age 11, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic
Full video review available here. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=13IR8xjPxrw
A movie with such a title that is about the scary and dark void called “space,” you’d expect to be thrilling. Well, I have to tell you this movie is beyond thrilling. This film is a perfect combination of “Matrix” and “Inception” and will pump your adrenaline to a maximum level! “Gravity” is a life time experience that everyone must see! If you add to the mix that Sandra Bullock and George Clooney star in it as main characters, it just doesn’t get better than that!
Since this movie has so many genres, it’s hard to tell its main one. This movie has adventure, comedy, sorrow, suspense, thrilling scenes, intense scary scenes and so much more! The main one out of all these fantastic genres is definitely suspense. You walk in feeling bored and tired and you walk out feeling like Ryan Stone in the movie. (Sandra Bullock)
The thrilling adventure begins when a young medical engineer named Ryan Stone goes up in space to help with installations for the Hubble Telescope. It seems like a casual spacewalk, but when she gets stranded away from her ship, “Explorer,” she needs to get back to Earth by hitching a ride on a different station. If you want to find out how and if she and her co-worker, Matt Kowalski (George Clooney) make it back to Earth alive, you have to watch the film.
The movie has so much adventure and so many impressive and clear graphics, it’s hard not to like it! You feel like you are right there, experiencing whatever the main characters experience. The acting is amazing and there is deep meaning behind it – what would you do, if you were alone in the deepest and darkest part of this entire universe, with nobody but yourself? What would your thoughts be? Would you be able to remain hopeful or just give up and let Space take you? The camera work is the best I’ve ever seen. Alfonso Cuarón, I give you standing ovation for directing this masterpiece.
My favorite scene is when Ryan is stuck in a damaged escape pod with no fuel. She thinks she’s stranded. Before she decides to give up and loose hope of returning to Earth, she starts to see Matt. Matt gets in when she does not have her helmet on and shows her that she can get back. As soon as his statement is over, he’s gone. She hallucinated him but the plan worked! It’s a very interesting and important scene in the movie and that’s why I like it.
The movie is rated PG-13 and I honestly think it is appropriate for age 12 to 18. I give it 5 out of 5 stars and it is showing in theaters everywhere right now. I may be wrong, but I predict Oscar nominations for the cast and director of “Gravity.” Let’s see what happens in 2014!
By Keefer B, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 12
Video review available here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=13IR8xjPxrw
“Gravity” is a suspenseful, visually enchanting and wonderfully acted film. The plot focuses on Dr. Ryan Stone (Sandra Bullock) after a disaster happens in space and leaves her stranded. Her goal is to get to a Chinese space station to fly back to Earth before she runs out of time, oxygen and hope.
I love the visual and 3D effects. Space is infinite and “Gravity” shows that beautifully. When you see Dr. Stone drifting off into space you feel the vastness. Many 3D artists like to over use this technology by throwing floating stuff at us or making you think you can reach out and touch them. This is an excepted gimmick but if that’s all it accomplishes, it can get old. This movie has objects floating into the audience, but the items bring you into the actors environment making you feel like you’re with them.
Visual effects drive the structure of the film, but the heart of the film is Sandra Bullock. This movie is pretty much a one women show. The camera is never off her. Having just one character on screen for most of the film is risky. Through this film Ryan becomes a 3 dimensional character. She captures the audience’s attention and heart. Bullock’s abilities allow this to be a cohesive narrative. Her performance is superb. How Bullock gets herself into this series of emotional states are beyond me. To carry an entire film, put yourself in the physical positions, while pulling off these scenes is revolutionary. That’s why she’s my favorite character in this film.
My favorite scene is the ending. Not to give it away, but this scene is stunning. The pacing, the camera angles are just exquisite. Tension builds and you never know what’s going to happen. I love it when a film keeps you in the shadows until the very end. “Gravity” knows when to be suspenseful and to take breaks for the character to breath, literally.
The moral is, “Never lose hope.” Ryan gets close to reaching home, but her only way to get there is destroyed. Ryan thinks the only way out is to be with her deceased daughter, but learns that “when you come this far you can’t just throw it all away.”
I recommend this for ages 13 to 18. There are intense scenes and fowl language that are inappropriate for younger kids. Teens and adults can enjoy the visual effects and the intense space action.
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