I realize that I’m the last person to see GRAVITY. I also didn’t get on Facebook until a year after it was said to be “over,” that is to say “middle-aged people, like your mother, are on it.” Having heard this more than once—Facebook being a passé electronic gathering place for passé people. A social site that is the Internet equivalent of a pair of pleated Mom Jeans with a nice, flat ass reminding me of how unforgiving the tech times in which we live. Is it not enough to say that folks have moved on to the next cool, social media thing, except for, you know.
(FYI, it isn’t exactly flattering that the next new things only allow 140 characters a post, or a picture. Perhaps it’s time to admit that the Flat Ass Set just may have an attention span that doesn’t act as if its own hair is on fire.) I’m not defending Facebook, which I only joined after it was declared done, making it clear exactly where I fall on the currently cool meter.
Okay. GRAVITY. Didn’t like it. I made the mistake of watching it at home, and not in a theatre offering 3-D, something that I think actually makes me qualified to give the following opinion (see below). If the picture had only been nominated for Best Special Effects (and I could easily imagine how impressive those effects would be in a theatrical, 3-D situation), then I would give it an Oscar too. I can’t even fathom the competition for this beautifully simple elegant film.
But if it’s nominated for (and winning) an Oscar for Best Picture, then I must ask the following:
1. Was it the second-hand porn script that had Sandra Bullock saying “oh oh oh oh oh ooooohhhh, oh my god, oohhohohoh?”
2. Was it George Clooney taking his affable persona into space? I may be hovering miles above Earth, flying around with my jet pack as if nothing can go wrong, burning up fuel as there’s a Shell station on every corner, telling my throwaway anecdotes that have more depth than the film’s story, and acting for all the world like one big Cinematic Foreshadowing.
To recap: No script. No surprises.
3. Then someone said, Listen, we paid good money for George but we never see him. He’s so hidden in that spacesuit that he could be someone’s mother who doesn’t know that Facebook is over. Then someone else said, I know! We’ll have Sandra cut the oxygen in her shuttle, pass out and while she’s unconscious we’ll have George knock on the hatch, like Alice Kravitz coming to borrow a cup of sugar. This gives George a chance to take off his helmet (key), and rakishly pour himself a vodka (rakish is key). Then, oh, I don’t know, some vision-board affirmations crap about Sandra having a kid, yada yada yada, and George will hand her some line about “surviving” and “standing on her own two feet,” you know, because he’s affable and inspirational. The kid, the surviving—that’s Oscar talking, my friend.
4. I do understand that I don’t understand many scientific things, but if you’re unconscious due to a lack of oxygen, can you regain consciousness, even though there is now less oxygen than there was when you first fell into a coma?
5. Final scene: Sandra crawling from the lake, and standing on her own two feet. Wait, let me rephrase that in the way that I think it was originally pitched in the screenwriters’ room, Standing on her own two feet, people!
This post is not snark—it’s disappointment. Martin Scorcese’s After Hours was also about someone who spent an entire night trying to get back home, only to find himself outside his office the next morning, wrapped up in Plaster of Paris, which says more about the human condition than Sandra Bullock emerging from the lake like early Man. Early Man—what the fuck does that even mean?
GRAVITY isn’t a bad movie; it’s an okay movie—except for the effects and the filming, which are pretty spectacular—but, for me, effects aren’t a movie. For all I read and heard about this film, I really think that Tina Fey said it best, ”It’s the story of how George Clooney would rather float away into space and die than spend one more minute with a woman his own age.”
To that I would add, who is probably on Facebook.